In the aftermath of the poorly timed firing of former head coach, Claude Julien, the Boston Bruins have seemingly woken up and have played some really stellar hockey. In these past 4 games under interim head coach, Bruce Cassidy, the Bruins have beaten San Jose twice, Vancouver, and Montreal. In those 4 games, the Bruins are outscoring their opposition 16-7 and even got a win for backup goalie, Anton Khudobin (now 2-5-1 in 8 appearances). But among this recent run of success, the Bruins called up a 21 year old right winger from Slovakia. His name is Peter Cehlarik, and he's been wearing number 83 in the black and gold.
I'm going to be honest, I didn't really know who Cehlarik was when he was called up, mainly because I only really focused on the young defensemen in the organization due to the poor performance in the NHL on the blue line. Any who, Cehlarik was a monster down in the AHL, racking up 18 goals and 15 assists in 40 games with Providence. So far in the NHL, he has 2 assists in 3 games, and has really looked poised in the middle of a playoff surge.
Obviously Cehlarik's poise and skill hasn't led to himself scoring, but he's making some really gorgeous feeds to his teammates and setting them up with some pretty beautiful scoring opportunities, whether they're cashed in or not.
Let's take a look at his first assist, which resulted in the Bruins' first goal against the Canadiens on February 12.
(Dafoomie - YouTube)
Now isn't that just pretty? Cehlarik delivered a beautiful pass on the tape to Adam McQuaid of all people, who snuck backdoor and had an uncharacteristically gorgeous goal. That was also Cehlarik's first NHL point. I'm sure he can't wait to tell his grandkids about how his first assist was to Adam Mcquaid.
That wasn't his only assist of the night either. As he did his best Patrice Bergeron impression as the bunter on a Bruins Power Play goal by David Krejci, which made it 3-0 B's at the time.
(Hockey World - YouTube)
That's definitely the better of the two. The point here with Cehlarik is that he is an absolutely gifted playmaker. Even when the plays he sets up aren't turning into goals, #83 and his line-mates, David Krejci and David Pastrnak, are absolutely controlling the tempo when they're out there. Whether that be by zone time or scoring chances, the second line has really been special for the Bruins over this recent run of success. This kid is something special and I think he's found a home for himself on the right side of David Krejci for the Black and Gold.