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The Misguided Myth of the Modern Big Bad Bruins

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Old
01-27-2013, 05:27 PM
  #51
DKH
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deliciouspie View Post
is there an established correlation between size and winning

one of the nice things about the last thread was that we learned that when shawn thornton fights, there's a statistically significant, although small, correlation with increased wins

i haven't seen any assertion that size is the dimension that maximizes wins
the problem is with sports you can't quantify determination, discipline, focus, and passion

Marty St Louis may be shorter than most but his soul is boundless

size is great in sports and is a major piece of the pie (thats for you) but to often it is the excuse by teams to pass up better overall talent

I'm still waiting for Isbister to be the next Cam Neely, or was it Landon Wilson

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01-27-2013, 05:29 PM
  #52
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Originally Posted by Lshap View Post
Terrific thread idea and very well-written.

I'm a Habs fan who's been watching the game since the late 60s and from what I've seen, toughness as a team identity is about 85% perception and 15% reality. In other words, toughness is most effective when it's used as a deterrent that remains holstered, used pretty rarely during the actual game.

The Flyers used it plenty in the 70s. In fact, they went nuclear and managed to bomb the hell out of everyone, but once the league and the rules adapted, so did Philly.

Boston is one of the teams that still identify with the 'big & tough' label, but from my POV your recent Cup was won with less-intimidating guys like Recchi, Thomas and Bergeron leading the way. Even Chara, while obviously a huge presence, wasn't at all dirty throughout the playoffs. Effective? Hell yeah. Intimidating? Not really. As others in this thread have said -- if intimidation was such a big factor, why was Boston's toughest series against less-physical Montreal and Tampa? Boston won thanks to scoring depth, a strong defensive system and great goaltending. Fighting and intimidation? Not so much, IMO.

And I don't think you guys lost last year because you were out-muscled. Washington played a great defensive system and gummed up the middle, keeping you from setting up. Holtby was hot, too. Playoffs are about matchups, and Boston didn't match up well against last year's hybrid version of the Caps.

And now most teams have some intimidation in their roster. The league's overall toughness has achieved a kind of parity where everyone has their tough guy as a deterrent to everyone else's tough guy. I don't think any team will lose games because they were intimidated or out-fought. That's not to say you should dump the 'Big-Bad Bruin' thing. It is your team's thing. But I question how much that identity is responsible for winning games. As a Habs fan, I get hives every time some Quebec farmer proclaims he wants to stock the roster with french players. Is that Montreal's identity? A few people still think so. Does it help us win games? Please...

Besides, I like the idea of Boston keeping its bad-ass rep whether or not it quantifies in the win column, because it keeps the rivalry between our two teams alive and well. Please don't allow likeable players like Bergeron, Seguin and Rask to become your identity, because it would become much harder to hate the Bruins, which would fly against fundamental physics. We can't have that.

Thanks for contributing. I found this objective and real.
I grew up on the Big Bad Bruins and Broadstreet Bullies. Today's Bruins and league itself doesn't come close.
Accusations of Bruins 'gooning it up ' are pretty far fetched too. What the Bruins do have is something else I believe. They refuse to be intimidated. They also stick up for each other. No Bruin is ever 'left alone'. Which in my opinion was the Canucks greatest weakness.
So I guess size to me matters. Not the size of the individuals but what the group (size) is willing to do in the name of one.

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Old
01-27-2013, 05:32 PM
  #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DKH View Post
the problem is with sports you can't quantify determination, discipline, focus, and passion

Marty St Louis may be shorter than most but his soul is boundless

size is great in sports and is a major piece of the pie (thats for you) but to often it is the excuse by teams to pass up better overall talent

I'm still waiting for Isbister to be the next Cam Neely, or was it Landon Wilson
Hell, Stan johnathan couldn't have been more than 5'10".

But I get colts sentiment- it would be great to have another thumper on up front. That third long wing spot is really the only opening.

Paille has been playing very large of late. I knew he could lay the body, but this year he's taken a couple big hits like he's got another 30 lbs on him.

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01-27-2013, 05:52 PM
  #54
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Originally Posted by Colt.45Orr View Post
Lshap,

Didn't quote you, but thanks for the fantastic contribution to the thread --even if you are a Habs fan you should feel free to post on the B's board any time.
I like it too.....imagine, a civil discourse with a Canadien fan.....who'd a thunk it?

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01-27-2013, 05:56 PM
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It's not actual size that leads to Big Bad Bruins moniker. It's the way that pretty much the entire team plays. Here are some interesting tidbits that show being big, and playing big are not even close to the same.

-For over 2 and half years Blake Wheeler was the Bruins biggest forward.

-Adam McQuaid is listed at 197 lbs.

-Tomas Kaberle is listed at 214 lbs.

-Zac Rinaldo had 232 pims last year. He's listed at 169.

- Cal Clutterbuck is 5'11. He has 947 hits the past 3 years.

-All 5'8 of Chris Bourque is 4th on the Bruins in hits with 10(I'm as confused as everyone else)

Stats are subjective yes, and you can pretty much manipulate them to bolster any argument you want to make. However, The Bruins Big and Bad reputation does not come from their size. It's comes from their style of play, and their take no **** attitude.

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01-27-2013, 06:29 PM
  #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JMiller View Post
Hell, Stan johnathan couldn't have been more than 5'10".

But I get colts sentiment- it would be great to have another thumper on up front. That third long wing spot is really the only opening.

Paille has been playing very large of late. I knew he could lay the body, but this year he's taken a couple big hits like he's got another 30 lbs on him.
I'll take a 5'10" guy who can play over someone who is 6'3"

is this a secret we miss Benoit Pouliot thread

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01-27-2013, 07:03 PM
  #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hopkinsj31 View Post
It's not actual size that leads to Big Bad Bruins moniker. It's the way that pretty much the entire team plays. Here are some interesting tidbits that show being big, and playing big are not even close to the same.

-For over 2 and half years Blake Wheeler was the Bruins biggest forward.

-Adam McQuaid is listed at 197 lbs.

-Tomas Kaberle is listed at 214 lbs.

-Zac Rinaldo had 232 pims last year. He's listed at 169.

- Cal Clutterbuck is 5'11. He has 947 hits the past 3 years.

-All 5'8 of Chris Bourque is 4th on the Bruins in hits with 10(I'm as confused as everyone else)

Stats are subjective yes, and you can pretty much manipulate them to bolster any argument you want to make. However, The Bruins Big and Bad reputation does not come from their size. It's comes from their style of play, and their take no **** attitude.
Yup. You can't teach size, but you can't teach heart either. And I'll take heart every time.

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01-27-2013, 07:33 PM
  #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lshap View Post
Terrific thread idea and very well-written.

I'm a Habs fan who's been watching the game since the late 60s and from what I've seen, toughness as a team identity is about 85% perception and 15% reality. In other words, toughness is most effective when it's used as a deterrent that remains holstered, used pretty rarely during the actual game.

The Flyers used it plenty in the 70s. In fact, they went nuclear and managed to bomb the hell out of everyone, but once the league and the rules adapted, so did Philly.

Boston is one of the teams that still identify with the 'big & tough' label, but from my POV your recent Cup was won with less-intimidating guys like Recchi, Thomas and Bergeron leading the way. Even Chara, while obviously a huge presence, wasn't at all dirty throughout the playoffs. Effective? Hell yeah. Intimidating? Not really. As others in this thread have said -- if intimidation was such a big factor, why was Boston's toughest series against less-physical Montreal and Tampa? Boston won thanks to scoring depth, a strong defensive system and great goaltending. Fighting and intimidation? Not so much, IMO.

And I don't think you guys lost last year because you were out-muscled. Washington played a great defensive system and gummed up the middle, keeping you from setting up. Holtby was hot, too. Playoffs are about matchups, and Boston didn't match up well against last year's hybrid version of the Caps.

And now most teams have some intimidation in their roster. The league's overall toughness has achieved a kind of parity where everyone has their tough guy as a deterrent to everyone else's tough guy. I don't think any team will lose games because they were intimidated or out-fought. That's not to say you should dump the 'Big-Bad Bruin' thing. It is your team's thing. But I question how much that identity is responsible for winning games. As a Habs fan, I get hives every time some Quebec farmer proclaims he wants to stock the roster with french players. Is that Montreal's identity? A few people still think so. Does it help us win games? Please...

Besides, I like the idea of Boston keeping its bad-ass rep whether or not it quantifies in the win column, because it keeps the rivalry between our two teams alive and well. Please don't allow likeable players like Bergeron, Seguin and Rask to become your identity, because it would become much harder to hate the Bruins, which would fly against fundamental physics. We can't have that.
I disagree.

I think teams lose games because they get intimidated. I think Milan Lucic intimidated the Sabres and that derailed their entire season. I've seen defensemen bail on retrieving pucks -in the playoffs- because they hear footsteps. That leads to wins.

The Bruins intimidated the Canucks. I don't think the Bruins win the Cup without that element to their game.

That's not to say intimidation is an easy-button to winning, but I do think it can be another tool in your toolbox.

That said...

I think there's some confusion in the thread. I think some folks are seeing the thread title challenging the "Big, Bad Bruins" moniker and disagreeing because they see the B's as being plenty intimidating. I agree, the B's are plenty intimidating, but I don't think that was necessarily the point of the OP. To me, this thread is really about whether or not the Bruins would benefit from getting bigger and/or better along the walls, specifically at the 3rd line LW position. That, I believe is a worthwhile debate.

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01-27-2013, 07:35 PM
  #59
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Good topic and I think I get what the OP is saying. The Bruins image of a bunch of thugs is blown out of proportion, mostly by the Canadian media, the Chara incident was big here and on the biggest stage Boston and Vancouver played a chippy series where Vancouver royally pissed off Boston by biting Bergy and taunting him/Horton incident and Boston amped up the physical and handed them their ass. We definately do have a physical team, but it does get exaggerated and man for man as pointed out they aren't the biggest at all.

One thing on the size front that makes the Bruins seem bigger than they are is that the monster Chara isn't a John Scott who plays a few minutes a night but he plays 25 minutes. Same with Looch, most teams have a guy with his size and fighting ability on the 4th line but Looch plays first line minutes and this translates into alot more overall physicality.

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01-27-2013, 07:52 PM
  #60
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So I guess the we are big enough crowd subscribes to the " we were just tired " theory?

May be somewhere in between but those big Caps forwards did make life pretty rough on our forwards. How bad did our 4th line get outplayed again? How many goals did guys like Chimera -Brouwer- Laich- Ovechkin allow our scorers again? Maybe they were really tired but its a good observation. A good maybe.

I do remember this board saying our defense was fine going into the 09 play-off and the Canes exposing that...and last summer that we had enough scoring depth even after losing recchi and Ryder with Horton a big question mark.

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01-27-2013, 08:00 PM
  #61
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Fwiw, I agree with Colt.

I think being able to wear a team down with strong board play is an effective strategy. I don't think that's a new or novel concept. I think the Caps gained a lot of momentum in that series by possessing the puck in our end, along the walls for long stretches. I think the B's, during their Cup run, were built to be a strong board team. I think the Kings were built to be a strong board team.

Maybe we don't have to add a guy that's 6'4 220, as people have pointed out, there are strong board players who are smaller than that, but I think the larger point stands: that adding a player who brings that element to the 3rd line would make us harder to play against in the playoffs.

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01-27-2013, 08:12 PM
  #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Ladd View Post
Fwiw, I agree with Colt.

I think being able to wear a team down with strong board play is an effective strategy. I don't think that's a new or novel concept. I think the Caps gained a lot of momentum in that series by possessing the puck in our end, along the walls for long stretches. I think the B's, during their Cup run, were built to be a strong board team. I think the Kings were built to be a strong board team.

Maybe we don't have to add a guy that's 6'4 220, as people have pointed out, there are strong board players who are smaller than that, but I think the larger point stands: that adding a player who brings that element to the 3rd line would make us harder to play against in the playoffs.
Yeah I definitely wouldn't deal a top 6 forward or any of our D. Colts post makes me reconsider my Sullivan wish from the summer. You may want a bigger hitter in that 3LW spot.

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01-27-2013, 08:24 PM
  #63
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Originally Posted by Bill Ladd View Post
I disagree.

I think teams lose games because they get intimidated. I think Milan Lucic intimidated the Sabres and that derailed their entire season. I've seen defensemen bail on retrieving pucks -in the playoffs- because they hear footsteps. That leads to wins.

The Bruins intimidated the Canucks. I don't think the Bruins win the Cup without that element to their game.

That's not to say intimidation is an easy-button to winning, but I do think it can be another tool in your toolbox.

That said...

I think there's some confusion in the thread. I think some folks are seeing the thread title challenging the "Big, Bad Bruins" moniker and disagreeing because they see the B's as being plenty intimidating. I agree, the B's are plenty intimidating, but I don't think that was necessarily the point of the OP. To me, this thread is really about whether or not the Bruins would benefit from getting bigger and/or better along the walls, specifically at the 3rd line LW position. That, I believe is a worthwhile debate.
Pretty much bang-on.

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01-27-2013, 08:53 PM
  #64
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http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/sh....php?t=1332753


I said it the other day and I'll say it again: Brendan Morrow would be an amazing fit on the third line left wing next to Kelly and Peverley.


Edit: This was a great point brought up by Colt. I was feeling the same way, regarding Bourque's size and the overall feel of the third line needing to be bigger (for board play / grind of the playoffs), but didn't quite know how to express it in full. Thank you for connecting the dots for me.


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01-27-2013, 09:03 PM
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http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/sh....php?t=1332753


I said it the other day and I'll say it again: Brendan Morrow would be an amazing fit on the third line left wing next to Kelly and Peverley.
agreed. he would be ideal and i have wanted him on the Bruins to play in that 3rd line role for a long time now. he's not a huge guy but he obviously plays much bigger then he is. guy has a ton of heart and grit, perfect replacement for Recchi. he is also in the last year of his contract so we wouldn't have to worry about his cap hit next year when the cap drops.

Morrow, Glencross, Clowe are all guys i would target. i don't see Clowe becoming available and Glencross has a full NTC so Morrow might be the easiest to acquire

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01-27-2013, 09:07 PM
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agreed. he would be ideal and i have wanted him on the Bruins to play in that 3rd line role for a long time now. he's not a huge guy but he obviously plays much bigger then he is. guy has a ton of heart and grit, perfect replacement for Recchi. he is also in the last year of his contract so we wouldn't have to worry about his cap hit next year when the cap drops.

Morrow, Glencross, Clowe are all guys i would target. i don't see Clowe becoming available and Glencross has a full NTC so Morrow might be the best addition
Those are the exact reasons why I think Morrow could do well here - both in terms of his total on ice package and his cap implications. While some see an aging vet down in Dallas, I see another Recchi (who the majority claimed couldn't hang anymore when the Bruins acquired him at the deadline). Morrow would look like a different player up in Boston.

For what it's worth, I don't see San Jose giving up on Clowe. That top 6 has looked amazing so far and Clowe's big body would be sorely missed in the playoffs (consider who he is 'protecting').

Glencross could be the replacement for Horton next season seeing as though he's on a cap friendly deal (and a deal I don't see Horton even sniffing).


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01-27-2013, 09:19 PM
  #67
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Originally Posted by DKH View Post
the problem is with sports you can't quantify determination, discipline, focus, and passion

Marty St Louis may be shorter than most but his soul is boundless

size is great in sports and is a major piece of the pie (thats for you) but to often it is the excuse by teams to pass up better overall talent

I'm still waiting for Isbister to be the next Cam Neely, or was it Landon Wilson
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01-27-2013, 09:37 PM
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Yeah I definitely wouldn't deal a top 6 forward or any of our D. Colts post makes me reconsider my Sullivan wish from the summer. You may want a bigger hitter in that 3LW spot.
Why I thought they might kick the tires on someone like Knuble. We'll see how he does w/ the flyers.

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01-27-2013, 10:25 PM
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The bruins are the toughest team in the league. Last year we ran into a nobody goalie who played so over his head it was ridiculous lol. Not every player is huge but other teams are trying to get tougher bc of the bruins. Would like us to add another big player who could play on our 3rd line that isn't an AHLer.

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01-27-2013, 10:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattAndersonBTR View Post
http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/sh....php?t=1332753


I said it the other day and I'll say it again: Brendan Morrow would be an amazing fit on the third line left wing next to Kelly and Peverley.


Edit: This was a great point brought up by Colt. I was feeling the same way, regarding Bourque's size and the overall feel of the third line needing to be bigger (for board play / grind of the playoffs), but didn't quite know how to express it in full. Thank you for connecting the dots for me.
I think Morrow would be incredible. Wonder what the Stars would want for him.

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01-27-2013, 11:02 PM
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El'Nino asked for a trade out of the Island. . Big boy with high-end pedigree but got his head messed with last year.

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01-27-2013, 11:33 PM
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...

I'm not worried about the third line... yet.

As happy as we are with certain things and as hesitant as we are about others, we ARE only four games in. I remember Peverley and Kelly taking a month or so to get going when they first came to town. I seem to recall many other instances where lines that have disappointed us in the first month of the season ended up being among the team's strengths by the middle of the schedule.

For all the talk of who NEEDS to step it up, or what NEEDS to change, the Bruins have taken 7 of 8 thus far. Tells me that none of these things NEED to happen - not yet. We're not going to have the most well-oiled machine this early. And while we don't have the luxury of being too patient either, four games is still too early to be too concerned or too elated.

As for the "myth"... Not a chance. While the team may be smaller as a whole, there's not a tougher team in the NHL. To the point where every single one of us fans WANT teams to come out and attempt to intimidate the B's. "Poking the Bear" we call it. If clubs want to play that size game with us, that only works to the Bruins' advantage. That's all I really need to know about how legit the "Big Bad Bruins" identity is in respect to this roster.
Good post! I think any team that has Chara,Lucic,Thornton even Marchand isn't lacking in the toughness department.

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01-27-2013, 11:59 PM
  #73
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Good post! I think any team that has Chara,Lucic,Thornton even Marchand isn't lacking in the toughness department.
I feel like some of you are arguing with a straw man. Colt put a lot of effort into delineating precisely what he was saying and what he wasn't saying. He took pains to distinguish size from toughness. He wrote in his OP that he wasn't 100% sure that we even need more "badness". He's not saying the B's are outright soft. His chief concern IMO is that we could use more size in a few key spots (e.g, 3rd line left wing), and that the "Big, Bad Bruins Myth", facilitated by 2011 playoff matchups, has blinded us somewhat to that need.

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01-28-2013, 12:41 AM
  #74
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I feel like some of you are arguing with a straw man. Colt put a lot of effort into delineating precisely what he was saying and what he wasn't saying. He took pains to distinguish size from toughness. He wrote in his OP that he wasn't 100% sure that we even need more "badness". He's not saying the B's are outright soft. His chief concern IMO is that we could use more size in a few key spots (e.g, 3rd line left wing), and that the "Big, Bad Bruins Myth", facilitated by 2011 playoff matchups, has blinded us somewhat to that need.
It's not a straw man if the title of the thread is "The Misguided Myth of the Modern Big Bad Bruins"... If Colt didn't want to be challenged, he could have changed his wording to "The Bruins Could Use More Size on the Wing".

As it stands, I'm not too worried about our forechecking prowess. This team isn't too-too different from the team that won the Cup with the most effective physical play in the league. We're down a Recchi and a Ryder and COULD definitely use something to replace their strength... But it's hardly something I would consider a large concern. Not yet, anyway.

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01-28-2013, 05:58 AM
  #75
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Originally Posted by Bill Ladd View Post
I disagree.

I think teams lose games because they get intimidated. I think Milan Lucic intimidated the Sabres and that derailed their entire season. I've seen defensemen bail on retrieving pucks -in the playoffs- because they hear footsteps. That leads to wins.

The Bruins intimidated the Canucks. I don't think the Bruins win the Cup without that element to their game.

That's not to say intimidation is an easy-button to winning, but I do think it can be another tool in your toolbox.

That said...

I think there's some confusion in the thread. I think some folks are seeing the thread title challenging the "Big, Bad Bruins" moniker and disagreeing because they see the B's as being plenty intimidating. I agree, the B's are plenty intimidating, but I don't think that was necessarily the point of the OP. To me, this thread is really about whether or not the Bruins would benefit from getting bigger and/or better along the walls, specifically at the 3rd line LW position. That, I believe is a worthwhile debate.
Great points, so much so that Looch was/is still in their heads that they felt the necessity for a Scott/Ott which, IMO, especially the Scott addition, was poor Management

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