Boston Bruins

It would appear that the 2022-23 Bruins are indeed on a warpath.

The best team in the NHL — and by a staggering 14-point edge over the Hurricanes, Devils, and Maple Leafs after Tuesday’s win over the Canadiens —the Bruins’ latest triumph came with another jump into the NHL record books.

With Tuesday’s victory pushing Jim Montgomery’s squad up to 80 points on the year by way of a 38-5-4 record, the Bruins became the fastest team to reach the 80-point mark in NHL history.

The Bruins even burned their rivals in the process, as Boston’s 47-game march to 80 points beat the previous record of hitting 80-point mark in 49 games, which was set by the 1943-44 Canadiens.

  • And in case you’re a baby who worries about regular-season accolades spelling doom for the postseason (they do not), you’ll be pleased to know that many of the other teams that the Bruins beat out to set this new record all had their fun during the regular season and postseason.

    In the case of the 1943-44 Canadiens, the hot start was the appetizer to a season that ended with the franchise’s fifth Stanley Cup championship. Same for the 1975-76 Canadiens, as well as the 1983-84 Oilers. And though the 1979-80 Flyers did not win the Stanley Cup, they did get to the Stanley Cup Final.

    In fact, among those teams mentioned in the same breath as this year’s Bruins and their race to 80 points, only the 1944-45 Canadiens failed to make it to the Stanley Cup Final.

    And, again, none of that matters. Not the history, or the act itself. They’re mere footnotes along the way.

  • MONTREAL, CANADA - JANUARY 24: Taylor Hall #71 of the Boston Bruins celebrates his goal with teammates David Pastrnak #88 and Hampus Lindholm #27 during the second period of the game against the Montreal Canadiens at Centre Bell on January 24, 2023 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

    MONTREAL, CANADA – JANUARY 24: Taylor Hall #71 of the Boston Bruins celebrates his goal with teammates David Pastrnak #88 and Hampus Lindholm #27 during the second period of the game against the Montreal Canadiens at Centre Bell on January 24, 2023 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. (Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

  • But when it comes to the 2022-23 Bruins, what more can be said at this point?

    With the band back together, the Bruins have fully embraced the challenge of going balls to the wall for Montgomery in his first year behind the Boston bench, and Montgomery’s moves to make the Bruins a deeper, more complete team have paid off in a major way.

    There’s no one way to beat this Bruins team, and that’s by design, as the Bruins have no longer fully committed themselves to putting all their eggs in one basket (or line or pairing, in this case).

  • This isn’t the first ‘record watch’ you’ll find yourself on when it comes to these Bruins either.

    As a team, the Bruins appear set to at the very least challenge the single-season wins record of 62, which was set by the 1995-96 Red Wings and matched by the 2018-19 Lightning. 25 wins over the final 37 games of the regular season would allow the Bruin to match the record, while 26 would break the record.

    The Bruins could even make a push for the most points in a single season, too, which is held by the 1976-77 Canadiens, who had 132 points. The Bruins would need to amass 52 points over their final 37 games to get there. With the way this team has placed, it’s somehow not out of the realm of possibility.

    Leading the NHL with a plus-83 goal differential, the Bruins could also be set up to challenge the 2005-06 Sens’ plus-107 goal differential, which is the best goal differential of the post-lockout NHL. (There’s just no way the Bruins are going to even come close to challenging the 1976-77 Canadiens’ plus-216 goal differential, or even the Black and Gold’s franchise record, which was set in 1970-71 with a plus-192 goal differential.)

    Individually, Linus Ullmark could challenge for the single-season save percentage record, which is held by Bruins netminder Tim Thomas and set during his unforgettable 2010-11 season, at .937. Ullmark enters Thursday’s meeting with Tampa with a .938 save percentage on the year.