The Boston Bruins and the Toronto Maple Leafs have developed quite the rivalry over the past several seasons and on Saturday night the two teams will face off again in what is one of the more highly anticipated matchups on the schedule this evening. Although the rivalry has been intense I think you would be hard pressed to find even a single person that would argue against the fact that the Bruins have been coming out on the winning end of that rivalry more often than not as of late, and that appeared to be the narrative on Saturday morning.
Being a head coach in the National Hockey League is a very tough job, you have a ton of pressure on your shoulders, you have to deal with superstar egos, but one of the most overlooked parts of the job is having to deal with the media. Although relationships between teams and the reporters that cover them are generally pretty good, NHL head coaches often have to field questions that are on the ridiculous end of the spectrum and perhaps even more importantly have to come up with answers to those question. This morning Toronto Maple Leafs head coach Mike Babcock was asked if there was anything that he would like take from the Bruins system, a system that has been giving his team fits in the postseason in recent years, and adopt it into the Maple Leafs' own way of doing things.
To his credit Babcock not only found a way to answer the relatively silly question, but managed to compliment some of the most well respected players in the entire league in the process. Instead of giving credit to Boston's "system" or way of doing things, Babcock instead pointed to the fact that the Bruins currently field two superstars, star center Patrice Bergeron and star defenseman Zdeno Chara, each and every night that most teams in the NHL would love to have on their roster.
"They've been building their program for a long time. Chara has been there. Bergeron has been around there. We'd like to steal those guys," said Babcock in a tongue and cheek response to the reporter.
I sincerely doubt Babcock would be alone in his desire to add a player like Bergeron or Chara to his roster, but for tonight he will merely have to deal with the fact that he and his staff will have to gameplan around them in the hopes of picking up a win over their rivals.