Bruins News & Rumors: Garland, Rask, Bergeron & More

In this edition of Boston Bruins News & Rumors, management is reportedly considering making a move for Conor Garland of the Vancouver Canucks. In other news, goaltender Tuukka Rask has been shut down for the remainder of the week due to a lower-body issue. Meanwhile, Patrice Bergeron was a big fan of this year’s All-Star skills competition. Last but not least, Brad Marchand recently spoke about how he is looking to add to his arsenal by developing a better one-timer.

Bruins Interested in Garland

While it has been reported the Bruins are interested in Canucks forward J.T. Miller, they may also be considering Garland. Elliotte Friedman recently suggested Vancouver management may be considering trading Garland to re-sign Miller. Interestingly enough, the Bruins were interested in Garland this summer when he was still a member of the Arizona Coyotes.

Conor Garland Vancouver Canucks
Conor Garland, Vancouver Canucks (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

In an article written by Jimmy Murphy of Boston Hockey Now, he spoke with an NHL scout who mentioned that the Canucks are very high on Bruins prospect Fabian Lysell, who currently plays for the Vancouver Giants in the Western Hockey League. Given their interest, there is a possibility the two sides will be able to work out a deal ahead of the trade deadline. The 25-year-old Garland has 24 points in 41 games this season and is in the first year of a five-year contract with a cap hit of $4.95 million.

Rask Shut Down for the Week

It hasn’t been the return he was hoping for early on, as Rask is sporting a 4.28 goals-against average (GAA) along with a .844 save percentage (SV%) through his first four games of the season. The struggles don’t come as a major surprise, given that he is coming off of hip surgery. By the sounds of it, his hip may still be bothering him, and as a result, the team has chosen to shut him down for the entire week.

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“He’s not on the ice today,” Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy told reporters on Monday. “He won’t be practicing this week, so we’ll update at the end of the week or early next week. That’s where he’s at right now. We’ll see where it goes from there. He’s kind of fighting through some medical issues, I guess, or body issues for his age with the comeback. So we’ll see how it turns out.”

This isn’t a great situation, given that hip surgery can often take its toll on goaltenders. Given his resume, it is fair to believe Rask can get back on track, but there is certainly some cause for concern here. It will be interesting to keep an eye on him and see how he progresses in the coming weeks.

Bergeron a Fan of All-Star Skills Competition

Each year, the NHL’s All-Star game skills competition is mixed in terms of reviews from fans. That was the case again this year, though one person who certainly was a fan of the festivities was Bergeron. The 36-year-old was able to have his family at the event, which meant a great deal to him.

Patrice Bergeron, Boston Bruins
Patrice Bergeron, Boston Bruins (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

“I came here to enjoy myself,” Bergeron said. “My kids were on the bench. It was an amazing night. I had a lot of fun. The kids loved it and enjoyed it.

“I think it’s gonna be something that they’re gonna remember, especially my oldest [Zack]. He’s at an age where he’s gonna be able to remember and hopefully have some good memories out of it. I know I will. That was a blast.”

Though he has been a premier player in the league for a long time, he marveled at the skill he saw on the weekend. Two players who happened to catch his attention during the shootout rounds were Trevor Zegras of the Anaheim Ducks and Jack Hughes of the New Jersey Devils.

“Zegras, the move was pretty amazing,” Bergeron told reporters. “I thought Jack Hughes was well thought out. He put a lot of work into it. Everyone did… those two stood out to me.”

Given his age, it is fair to question whether this may have been Bergeron’s last time suiting up at an All-Star game. His comments clearly showed that he tried to soak it all in, so perhaps he realizes that as well. At this point, however, he is still playing like one of the games best, as he has 34 points through 42 games thus far.

Marchand Working on a One-Timer

For Bruins fans, there isn’t much, if anything, to critique when it comes to Marchand’s game. The 33-year-old has been one of the league’s top-scoring forwards for the past six seasons and is still performing at an elite level in 2021-22 with 49 points through 38 games. Despite his success, however, he isn’t satisfied and is looking to work on his game, particularly his one-timer. (from ‘Fluto Shinzawa: Bruins’ Brad Marchand working to turn a one-time weakness into a strength, become ‘more of a threat’ on power play,’ The Athletic 02/07/22).

“I never worked on it growing up,” Marchand told The Athletic recently. “I was always practicing walking off the wall and taking a snap shot or a wrist shot. That’s just what my tendency’s been in the league.”

Though he has scored several goals over his career, very few, have come on one-timers. After watching a teammate of his in David Pastrnak find the net plenty of times over the years with his rocket of a one-timer, Marchand realizes he could be even more dangerous if he can add it to his repertoire.

“Now I’m seeing the advantage of having a good one-timer,” Marchand explained. “From the tops of the circles and in close, I’m fine. But it’s further out that I think it can be beneficial to our power play. Open up Bergy, Pasta, and Chucky a little more if I’m more of a threat. It’s just another one of those things where, at this level, you have to continually find ways to improve and add different things to your game that can keep you relevant in the game.”

It says a lot about Marchand’s greatness that he is still looking to improve despite all he has achieved to this point. It proves that the game’s top players are at that level for a reason, as they are constantly searching and are always hungry for ways to get even better.

Up Next for the Bruins

The Bruins will be back in action for the first time Tuesday since the All-Star break, as they will take on the Pittsburgh Penguins. They will then prepare for a game on Thursday night versus the Carolina Hurricanes before going on the road and facing off against the Ottawa Senators Saturday afternoon in their final game of the week.

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