Now, sample size is everything, and nothing is set in stone...but early results in Providence’s young season happens to be quite encouraging for one Peter Cehlarik. One that could find him on the Boston Bruins sooner than later.
He has set out in this early season by having 5 points in 3 games. He has, along with Kenny Agostino and JFK, been a vital part of the Baby Bruins’ jump-start at 2-1-0, with early strugglers the winless Springfield Thunderbirds and near-winless Belleville Senators on the way for this weekend. I can’t guarantee that there will be an explosion of goals, but I can certainly say that it won’t be pretty for either team that hosts Providence come this friday and saturday.
I am also here to suggest that Cehlarik, for at least a game or two, be called up before he can play in either of these games.
Cehlarik has shown that North American ice is a friend of his, having the highest goal scoring year of his life last year, and is currently on pace to do the same, if not lap it, this year. He’s acclimated, is what I’m saying. He also didn’t look entirely too shabby in the 11 games he played for the big club, unstable lineup placement nonewithstanding.
And in a team whose middle six once again is having consistency issues, one of the more troubling aspects of this current iteration of the Boston Bruins is that players who are in kind of need of giving us a performance that looks like they’re trying to make up for past struggles...aren’t. Austin Czarnik and Frank Vatrano are frequently flipping back and forth to returns that could best be described as “ephemeral” and at worst “Exactly the same except the jersey number is flipped and the name above it flipped”, Matt Beleskey has done effectively nothing with his time on the third and now fourth lines. If Cassidy is looking for a solid kick in the ass for either of Vatrano or Beleskey, there’s really no better way to do it than to call up a player whose got nothing but lightly positive buzz around them and sit one of the two.
It’s also a little unsettling that a few of the in-betweener players that are trying on full-time membership to the Black and Gold are coming with their own inconsistency: The current iteration of Schaller-Kuraly-Heinen has shown some strong shifts here or there, they aren’t exactly making great impressions as individuals: Kuraly had an absolutely abysmal game in Vegas, Heinen was just sent back to Providence, and Schaller could be anywhere from the 2nd line to the 4th without much in the way of honestly making much of a difference. Even rookies like Anders Bjork and Jake DeBrusk have been having off nights on a team that would prefer them playing like they did in game 1. They need a moderating, consistent influence of positive play that also happens to be on the right side of 30. Peter Cehlarik has been that presence in Providence, he has shown to at least be able to pull some of that to the NHL level.
And if you’re into a more romantic side of the game, Cehlarik is coming off of a year that should’ve honestly been much more than it was, but was cut short due to a shoulder injury. The AHL playoffs, Slovakia badly needing half-decent forwards, the preseason, training camp? All he had to sit there and stew. He’s been long considered a player whose likely to see the NHL, and it would be great for a player whose had to watch talent that were effectively “owed” spots fly past him in spite of diminishing returns get a chance to shake things up.
At this point, with a severely up-and-down Vancouver and absolutely atrocious Buffalo coming to town, the worst thing he can be is a new(ish) name, right?