Boston Bruin who need to step up: Charlie Coyle
Year 1 of Charlie Coyle’s six-year extension didn’t go to plan. He struggled through a rotation of linemates and his own inconsistent play to a measly 16 points in 51 games. I’m sure that’s not exactly what the Boston Bruins were hoping for when they made the Weymouth native their fifth highest paid player.
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Coming into 2021, Coyle seems primed to take over the second line center spot vacated by Krejci’s move back home to the Czech Republic. The B’s just don’t have many options other than Coyle, unless someone like Jack Studnicka has improved tremendously over the offseason.
Hopefully, playing with two gifted scorers in Taylor Hall and Craig Smith will help Coyle out some, but in the end, he just needs to play better individually. Obviously, a lot more goes into hockey than scoring goals, but last season Coyle scored six goals and had a cap hit of $5.25 million. That’s not going to cut it.
This season, Coyle is going to have a lot more responsibility on his plate. More power play minutes, tougher matchups across from him, and the pressure of expectations that come with his contract and playing with Taylor Hall.
For the Boston Bruins to get where they want to go, their second line is going to have to do some heavy lifting, and that will start with Charlie Coyle stepping up.