With the 2021-22 hockey season well underway, the assessments are in for the state of the Boston Bruins system, and it is time to rank the organization’s top prospects.
“In general, the group as a whole has had a pretty solid first half,” Jamie Langenbrunner, Boston’s player development director, told New England Hockey Journal. “I don’t know if anyone has hit it out-of-the-park-type situations, but we’re seeing growth pretty much across the board, and that’s what we want. We pretty much have this philosophy with Providence and our whole development group, and that it’s a marathon not a sprint with these guys. We’re going to be patient and work with them. Sure, you want them ready for the NHL right now, but that’s not the reality, and it’s not been the reality in the last for to five years when we’ve been drafting later in every round. So, we’re taking on more projects, and I think we’ve done a good job of developing NHL players from where we’re picking, and that’s what we’re going to continue to do.”
Although the race for No. 1 was close between the team’s two top draft selections in 2020 and 2021, Ohio State Buckeyes freshman Mason Lohrei got the nod based on his tremendous development curve since the B’s took him late in the second round two years ago. Given how critical the development of accomplished two-way defensemen is to NHL teams, Lohrei’s near point-per-game line in his first 22 collegiate games is worth noting.