As Mark Recchi enters his 22nd season in the NHL, and third as member of the Boston Bruins, his role once again will be to mentor new and younger players while leading by example.
One new face will be 25-year-old Nathan Horton, who was acquired from Florida last Wednesday.
“I see a young gentleman that’s potential has been untapped.” said Recchi during a press conference earlier this afternoon.
Horton has seen five different coaches (Mike Keenan, Rick Dudley, John Torchetti, Jacques Martin and Pete DeBoer) as well as five different general managers (Dudley, Keenan, Martin, Randy Sexton, and Dale Tallon) in his six-year tenure in Florida. An organization with a bit more stability in a new city may be exactly what Horton needs.
“I think part of it is, I don’t think he’s been in the greatest place for development [Florida]” said Recchi. “I think they’ve always been kind of floundering around and I think the Boston sports market is going to be tremendous for him.”
The 6’2″ 220 lbs. Horton has put up some impressive numbers throughout the early stages of his career, 142-153-295 scoring totals in 422 NHL games—all in Florida. Although in each of his last three seasons his goals have tailed-off (31, 27, 22, 20), Recchi sees, along with tremendous potential, a superb talent.
“Number one I think he really wants to be a good player. And I think he’s really excited to get this opportunity to come here.” said Recchi. “I think it sounds like he’s willing and able to come in here and get better and learn and continue to grow as a player.
“He’s a tough kid, he can score, he can pass, this kid is just pure talent. We’ve just got to get it out on a more consistent basis” continued Recchi. “I believe if you surround him with the right people, you surround him and he’s willing to learn and be effective, then it’s going to be a great fit and he’s going to be a huge factor for our hockey club.”