Bruins coach Montgomery surprised by the consistency

Jim Montgomery, the Boston Bruins coach, has every reason to be positive about the future. His team leads the NHL by an eleven point lead with 68 points (32-4-4) in 40 games. No less impressive is the home series of 22 games with at least one point win (19-0-3) this season.

Montgomery had only taken over the Bruins at the beginning of the season. The coach emphasized after training on Wednesday that he was surprised at how quickly the team implemented its guidelines.

“It’s interesting to see how consistently we play at a high level and what a strong opponent we are for our opponents,” explains Montgomery. “I think we haven’t been that dynamic offensively in the last 15 games, to be honest. But the way we play hard in the important moments, we have a lot of consistency. Our record shows that.”

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In defensive play, it is important for the coach to “fish” many pucks from opponents in order to prevent them from developing and scoring chances. Finnish and Swedish players in particular are strong because they are taught it early on, but so is his player Patrice Bergeron is an ace at it, which is why he is considered one of the best defensive forwards in the NHL. “He manages to make opponents look bad,” Montgomery is convinced.

“You have to pick up someone’s speed and make sure the club is in the right position, which forces an opponent to get into the angle you want them to be at,” Montgomery said of what constitutes “fishing.” “And the ability to wait for the right moment.”

Montgomery is a coach who likes to rotate and reshuffle his ranks. The players got used to it quickly, he says. “There have been situations where players said they wanted more opportunities [mit den gleichen Mitspielern zu spielen] and we understand that,” he clarifies. “But I think the more I do it, the better they can handle it. The main reason behind what I do is that sometimes I reward players, but I also want to see how players are doing when playing with other players. So when there are injuries and in the playoffs when changes might be necessary, I will know exactly who can play with whom and in which constellations we have been successful.”

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