Boston is better than every other city in history at running superstars out of town. At the very least, we try to wish it into existence. For reasons we will never understand or explore because we are a collective of lunatics.
So it’s fitting that David Pastrnak, who became the subject of trade talk after Felger and Mazz discussed the possibility of trading him for Sidney Crosby, ended up taking home the NHL’s First Star of the Month for February. Pastrnak scored nine goals and eight assists, for 17 points in 11 games. He’s been an offensive anchor for a Bruins team that continues to struggle to find consistent scoring outside of the No. 1 line.
To be fair, Felger and Mazz brought up the Pastrnak-for-Crosby talk after the winger had gone four entire games without a goal. This was the same segment where Mazz suggested that he’d trade Pastrnak over Brandon Carlo, and took quite the lashing for it. This led to the first take retraction in Felger and Mazz history.
This is not another referendum on Mazz’s take, either. Ty Anderson and I have already taken him out back and flogged him with a splintered paddle for it. Sometimes we say things we regret and that’s fine.
After that whole thing, Pastrnak promptly scored a hat trick against the Flyers at Lake Tahoe. He also showed why he’s one of the league’s most endearing personalities with the whole “Barbie Girl” thing. Felger, of course, hated it because he hates fun. How dare fans find a player likable? If you don’t win MINIMUM three Cups by age 24 you are an ABSOLUTE tool, I’m soorey.
It’s just a perfect illustration of how crazy the Pastrnak trade talk got. The kid may not be a complete player at this stage of his career, but he’s also one of the rarest commodities in hockey which is a consistent 50-60 goal scorer. It remains to be seen whether he can rise up consistently in the playoffs, but that’s no reason to trade him now.
Does he need to play better in the playoffs at some point? Of course. Does he still have issues with puck management? Yes, and that’s common for young snipers like him. Does Star of the Month even matter? Definitely not – only the Stanley Cup matters, and the Bruins are going to need Pastrnak to play his best hockey to win it again. The trade talk doesn’t make these things untrue.
But the rhetoric over trading Pastrnak, as it usually does in this age of sports media, simply spiraled out of control. For the record, if you ask me who I’d trade Pastrnak for, I’d listen on Connor McDavid or Nathan MacKinnon. Otherwise, how would it be anything more than a lateral move?
Oh well. The fiasco is pretty much over now. And it was perfect for the NHL to recognize Pastrnak for the elite star that he is, while the city he calls home couldn’t get rid of him fast enough.
PHOTOS: David Pastrnak
Matt Dolloff is a writer and podcaster for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Yell at him on Twitter @mattdolloff and follow him on Instagram @mattydsays. You can also email him at email@example.com.