Bruins

Ryan: With offense stuck in neutral, Bruins must change their ‘mentality’ up front before playoffs truly begin

(Photo by Mark Blinch/NHLI via Getty Images)

Chris Wagner’s second-period goal on Sunday isn’t going to make many highlight reels by the time these revamped Stanley Cup Playoffs come to a conclusion in October.

It wasn’t flashy, but Boston’s lone tally against the Flyers in the round-robin opener didn’t need to be. Whereas most of the Bruins’ high-skilled forwards were stuck in neutral, Wagner kept things simple in the closing minutes of the second period, firing in a puck from within 10 feet of Philly's net.

The Walpole native's attempt didn't sail directly toward Carter Hart in net, but Robert Hagg's skates were there for the assist — as the biscuit bounced off of the defenseman in the crease and behind Hart to put Boston on the board.

It was the tried-and-true greasy goal Bruins fans have become accustomed to seeing from Boston's fourth-line corps — a crew that is often at its best when it's recovering pucks on the forecheck, operating in Grade-A ice and funneling pucks from within a few feet of the opposing netminder.

Based on their showing through their first two matchups in Toronto, the B's big guns would be wise to take a page out of Wagner's playbook going forward.

Blame the ice if you want. Blame the matchups — as Selke finalist Sean Couturier was constantly a thorn in the side of Patrice Bergeron's line up in Toronto.

But when it comes down to it, Boston's offensive ineptitude so far up in Toronto's bubble has been self-inflicted — with Bruce Cassidy's club negating their own