The Top Five Bruins Teams Of All Time: #5 1989-90
Kicking off our list of the top five Boston Bruins teams of all time is the 1989-90 Bruins. Led by a strong front office group with the likes of Hall of Fame builder Harry Sinden as general manager and fiery young head coach in Mike Milbury the B’s exceeded all expectations that year. They also had a wealth of excellent players both complimentary and elite and were among the leagues very best. They captured the franchise’s one and only Presidents Cup in its entire eighty eight year history. This team boasted a league best 46-25-9 record that year and won the Adams Division over a high powered Montreal Canadiens team and a talented Quebec Nordiques team.
Bruins current president and Hall of Famer Cam Neely led the Bruins in scoring that year with 55 goals, 37 assists, 117 penalty minutes, and a plus 10 in 76 games. This was the first of three 50 goal campaigns for Neely. Of these 55 goals, 25 were powerplay markers and 12 were game winners which to me is impressive as he was as dominate a scorer even strength as he was on the man advantage. This was a big season for Neely and the Bruins as it was this season when “Wam Bam Cam” emerged as an elite power-forward in the NHL and re-defined that style of play.
Also having one of his many excellent seasons was captain Ray Bourque with 19 goals, 65 assists, and a plus 31 in 77 games. This was not unusual for the now Bruins Hall of Famer as he was the definition of consistency here in Boston throughout his long decorated and tenured captaincy with the team. He would capture the third of his five Norris Trophies as league’s best defenseman that year. Forward Craig Janney came in third in scoring on the team that season 24 goals, 38 assists, and a plus 3 in 55 games. Also on that team was Glen Wesley, Ken Linseman, Don Sweeney and current Bruins analysts Andy Brickley, Gord Kluzak, and Lyndon Byers.
Also contributing to the success of the 1989-90 Boston Bruins was the goaltending tandem of Andy Moog and Reggie Lemelin. Moog put up a 24-10-7 record with three shutouts, a .893 save percentage, and a 2.89 goals against average in 46 games. Lemelin put up a similar record of 22-15-2 with two shutouts, a .892 save percentage, and a 2.81 goals against average in 43 games. The duo worked very well for the Bruins and helped them maintain fresh starting goaltenders through the long stretches of the season. The two also captured the William M. Jennings Trophy for fewest goals against all season.
This Bruins team would also enjoy some playoff success as well. After dispatching the Hartford Whalers in a hard fought seven game series, they would face their hated rivals in Montreal. This would not be like old times though as the Bruins dispatched the hated habs in five games. They would make quick work of the Washington Capitals to win the Prince of Wales Conference Championship which was only their second in their than sixty sixth NHL season. Unfortunately that was as far as they would get that year as they ran into an Edmonton Oilers team in the middle of creating a dynasty and lost in 5 games.
Though this Bruins team failed to win the Stanley Cup, it is still one of the best Bruins teams ever assembled for various reasons. It had two hall of fame players in their prime leading the charge and they are both involved heavily with the current Bruins organization in some form or another. It boasted a collection of heart and soul type players who defined what it meant to be a Bruin as well as players who are still prominent within the hockey community here in Massachusetts and the rest of New England. Capturing the franchise’s first Presidents Trophy is an amazing feat too given the accomplishments of the next few Bruins teams on our list.
The next team on our list debuts Friday at number four. Until then you can follow me on twitter here for all Bruins related news as it comes: Mattjacob64