Let’s turn the clock back to the first week of October — when hockey was finally back in full swing and the 5-0 New England Patriots appeared ready to bulldoze the rest of the NFL.
During that week, I dropped a casual 6,000-word deluge of stats, facts and predictions that I believed would help tell the story of the 2019-20 Bruins.
Now, with the Bruins set to come off their bye week and plunge into the unofficial “second half” of the 2019-20 campaign, we figured now would be a good time to check in on a couple numbers to see if Boston is well on its way to reaching these respective benchmarks and goals.
Let’s take a look:
106.1: The average point total for teams the year after losing the Stanley Cup Final (over the last 10 seasons)
One of the top questions going into the 2019-20 season was going to be how much of a Stanley Cup “hangover” was going to loom over the Bruins — given both the short summer and the emotional/physical drain that comes from an extended postseason run.
But, as we noted before, the teams that have come up just short of hoisting Lord Stanley’s Cup often do pretty well the following year. While we omitted the New Jersey Devils in 2012-13 because that lockout-shortened year would skew the rest of the results from full 82-game seasons, just about every team that fell in the Stanley Cup Final rebounded in short order, averaging about 48.5 wins the following year.
Even if the Bruins perhaps haven’t played up to their potential since their torrid start in October/November, Bruce Cassidy’s club is doing just fine as far as the standings are concerned.
The first-place Bruins are currently projected to finish with about 105 points, based on Micah Blake McCurdy’s current projections. According to his model, the Bruins are slated to finish second overall in the NHL in total points, with the Presidents’ Trophy going to Washington Capitals (110.2 projected points).
You could make the case that the Bruins would be running away with the Presidents’ Trophy race if they weren't struggling so much beyond regulation (12 OT & SO losses), but all things considered, Boston is doing just fine months after such a crushing defeat against St. Louis.
Who wants the Presidents’ Trophy, anyway?
1.48: Brandon Carlo’s 5v5 goals against per 60 minutes rate in 2018-19