Matthew Poitras will remain with the Boston Bruins.
Boston had until Tuesday to determine if the 19-year-old rookie would stay with the NHL team past nine games, which would have started the first year of his entry-level contract, or if he would go back to the Guelph Storm of the Ontario Hockey League.
Shortly after practice on Tuesday, Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery provided an update on Poitras’ condition:
“He’s sticking around. He just belongs.”
Montgomery continued by suggesting that Poitras might not play for Boston the entire season. However, Poitras’s early-season performance has impressed the Bruins enough at this point to keep him in the mix.
After being selected by Boston in the second round of the 2022 draft, Poitras has played nine games for the Bruins and has three goals and five points.
Since Boston didn’t have David Krejci or retiring veteran Patrice Bergeron when the season started, he has given the team much-needed center depth. Although Poitras usually plays in the second line, he could be pushed up or down the lineup depending on the situation.
The native of the Toronto area has quickly gained the respect of his colleagues as well. Defenseman Charlie McAvoy highlighted one particular area where Poitras has been excelling earlier this week.
“I think that’s been the biggest thing is his confidence with the puck,” McAvoy told reporters. “We’ve played a lot of teams here to start that play a man-on-man style. So tonight, you saw him tons of times just feel really confident with the puck, wherever he is in the offensive zone — whether he’s going to carry it, he’s going to hold it, protect it and wait until he sees a good play. That’s super impressive.”
Despite losing Taylor Hall, Bergeron, and Krejci from the starting lineup from the previous season, Boston is off to another winning start. With an 8-0-1 record, the Bruins are in first place in the Atlantic Division and second place overall in the league.