3 Boston Bruins stars key to the team's Stanley Cup ambitions

Vegas Golden Knights v Boston Bruins
3 Boston Bruins stars key to the team's Stanley Cup ambitions

The Boston Bruins have won one Stanley Cup since 1972, claiming the game's top prize in 2011. The only player remaining from that title win is captain Brad Marchand.

Boston, however, has been back to the Stanley Cup Finals since 2011. In 2013, it lost to the Chicago Blackhawks in six games. The Bruins made another appearance in 2019, losing to the St. Louis Blues in seven games.

Even though their last shot at a championship was five seasons ago, several players from that team are still in the lineup, including Marchand, David Pastrnak, Jake DeBrusk, Trent Frederic, Matt Grzelcyk, Danton Heinen, Brandon Carlo, Charlie Coyle,and Charlie McAvoy.

After setting the NHL records for wins (65) and points (135) in 2022-23, the Bruins didn't advance past the first round. This year, the pressure of being the league's top team is no longer an issue, which means the 2023-24 Bruins can focus on winning.

3 Boston Bruins stars key to the team's Stanley Cup ambitions

#3 Jeremy Swayman

Head coach Jim Montgomery mentioned before the playoffs that he intended to continue the goalie rotation between Jeremy Swayman and Linus Ullmark, just like he did during the regular season.

Jeremy Swayman, Boston Bruins
Jeremy Swayman, Boston Bruins

In Game 1, Swayman was a brick wall, stopping 35 shots en route to a decisive 5-1 victory. Thus far this season, he has yet to lose to the Toronto Maple Leafs with a 4-0-0 record.

However, Ullmark lost Game 2, giving up three goals and finishing with 31 saves. He was the first Bruins netminder to lose a contest to Toronto since Nov. 5, 2022.

Although Montgomery doesn't want to let either of his netminders get cold, he's opted to platoon them to start the first-round series.

Even though Ullmark is the reigning Vezina Trophy winner, Swayman had better numbers this season and has earned the chance to be the number one in the Stanley Cup playoffs.

#2 Brad Marchand

Marchand is in his 15th season with the Bruins, his first as team captain, having assumed the duties when Patrice Bergeron retired last summer.

Marchand has skated with Zdeno Chara and Bergeron, so he's come to understand what it means to wear the Spoked B sweater.

Whether winning the Stanley Cup or failing to win another one, Marchand has experienced all the highs and lows with the organization since his debut in 2009-10.

Although he's known as a pest and will never shake off that part of his reputation, he's morphed into one of the game's best forwards and earned his captaincy.

Now, it's his team and his opportunity to alter his legacy by lifting the Stanley Cup in June.

#1 David Pastrnak

Pastrnak is one of the game's most lethal goal-scorers. Whether scoring highlight reel goals or sniping one home from the faceoff circle on the powerplay, he's a former 60-goal scorer.

David Pastrnak, Boston Bruins
David Pastrnak, Boston Bruins

As the highest-paid player in franchise history, Pastrnak is responsible for carrying the offense for four rounds and helping the Bruins secure 16 victories.

After two games, Pastrnak has a goal and assist, which equals a point-per-game pace, but if Boston is seriously going to contend for the Stanley Cup, it will need him to produce at a higher pace.

During the Cup run in 2019, he had 19 points in 24 games while earning 20 points in just 12 games the year before.

Pastrnak has more to give, and Boston will need that and more if it wants to celebrate the franchise's seventh Stanley Cup in June.

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