By now you probably know that the University of Maine came down here and completed the sweep of Boston College last night, winning the season series, the only team to do so this year in Hockey East this season. I'm not going to recap the game so much as I am going to talk about the state of this team right now. Here are my thoughts.
First of all, congrats to Tim Whitehead and his team. Maine fans have been calling for him to be fired for what seems like forever now and he might have saved his job with two wins in Chestnut Hill for the first time in 8 years. That Maine club may be struggling but I can assure you this, I do not want to see them again in the Hockey East playoffs or any time soon. I thought guys like Devin Shore and Joey Diamond were phenomenal this weekend and were clearly the two best players on the ice for either team.
I'm not going to try and smooth things over like other BC Hockey writers may. Things are not looking good around here. Everything needs to change starting today. Every practice, every team meeting, and every game must be approached with a new attitude. It can't be ok let's just show up to the rink and go through the motions. No. Guys need to show up everyday and ask themselves "what can I do to make my team better ? " I'm still trying to stay positive when it comes to this team but right now, it's hard not to be worried. I don't know if it's the leadership starting with the captains or the general attitude in that locker room but something is not right and it needs to change immediately. I'm not going to dive into specific players and all that because it's impossible to point out guys when everybody's game is down. I can't think of one guy that played well in both games this weekend. Whatever Maine's coaching staff drew up for this weekend worked. Their first, second, third, and fourth lines all outplayed BC's. Their defense was as good as I've seen all year, and Ouellette played outstanding. BC was bad but Maine's play made them look even worse. Congrats to them...they certainly deserved it.
What can I say ? Chris Kreider or Brian Dumoulin or Cam Atkinson or Brian Gibbons are not going to come walking through the door anytime soon. I honestly thought things were going to change after that win vs Northeastern but apparently not. Someone told me yesterday that we'll be fine once Mike Matheson and Colin Sullivan are back. Those two guys were here vs UMass last weekend. Did that change anything ? No. Yes, it is true that I drove home from Orono almost exactly a year ago today thinking the same things that I am now. "This team is done". "No NCAA's, no Hockey East, no Beanpot. "It's over". Thankfully, I was wrong. However, last years team was so different from this team that you can't even mention them in the same sentence. I'm not saying they were so much better than this team but they just had so many parts. Whenever BC needed a big play last year Chris Kreider came through. He ain't stepping on that ice Friday night vs Vermont.
There is however one advantage BC has over every other team in college hockey. Jerry York. He always seems to get his teams playing their best hockey around this time of year. If you asked me last season after the Maine series if I thought that team would do anything I would said no way. Unfortunately, I don't feel too differently sitting here writing tonight. Are my overreacting ? Maybe a little, but I'm trying not to sugarcoat this situation for you. I wish I could sit here and tell you that things will be ok and all but I can't. I can however tell you that we have the greatest coach in college sports and that he is known to change teams like no one has ever done.
I'm not questioning the teams effort or their work ethic. Guys don't come to play here if they don't want to give 100 % each and everyday. Who are my to question their effort ? I am however telling you that everybody on that team needs to sit down and ask themselves how they can help make this a better hockey team. If everybody can do that and start to change what they do in practice and in games, I know things will get better. After all, we still have the best coach in college sports.