Some might argue that the Boston Bruins took a half-step (or more) backward this offseason due to salary cap challenges, but the team still looks formidable on paper. They might not be able to pencil Milan Lucic in at full force to start the season, though.
The hulking forward admitted to CSNNE.com that his surgically repaired left wrist isn’t quite back to 100 percent just yet.
“I feel like I’ve turned the corner in the last week or week-and-a-half, so that’s a positive. But I’m still working to get it up to 100 percent,” Lucic said. “I’m just excited to be back with everyone, and to get things going. You don’t want to do anything to have any setbacks, so you have to be smart about it. It’s turned the corner for the better as far as rehab has gone.”
The 26-year-old wore a hard cast that extended from his elbow to his hand for most of this summer, greatly limiting his ability to work out his upper-body this summer, as he told CSNNE.com. While he has time to build back up – again, he seems positive about the last couple weeks of progress – there’s at least some concern that he’ll take awhile to rebound to his usual intimidating form.
(Don’t expect him to resemble a “string bean” anytime soon, though.)
Should Lucic shoot more often once he’s healthy?
Lucic spoke about the “mental part to get over when it comes to shooting, and everything else on the ice” as well, which brings up an interesting point: the B’s might want to ask Lucic to fire the puck more often, at least long-term.
The big winger only fired 153 shots on goal last season, meaning he averaged fewer than two shots on net per game. His career average (811 in 485 regular season contests), is well off the two-per-game mark, too.
Considering his power, ability to fight through checks and impressive accuracy (his career shooting percentage is an outstanding 14.9), Boston might want to start whispering in his ear to maybe be just a touch less selective.
That might come naturally, though. After skating alongside obvious finishers in Jarome Iginla and Nathan Horton, David Krejci seemed excited by the prospect of Loui Eriksson bumping up his goal totals, so one can only imagine what kind of impact that might have on Lucic’s approach. Again, it may be wise to push for higher shot volumes when he feels comfortable, though.
This is not to say that Lucic should just fire the puck away without any thought regarding context, but more shots from that talented forward seems like it could only be a good thing.