During his eight-year National Hockey League career –all spent with Boston— Patrice Bergeron has gone through many up’s and down’s ranging from concussions and last place finishes all the way to a 30 goal season and a Stanley Cup Championship.
For those who don’t follow the Bruins, or don’t follow hockey closely you may not realize how important No. 37 really is to the Bruins and their success. If you look at Bergeron’s numbers –16-31-47— they are certainly not the best in the league, but are still solid.
If you need to send someone out there to kill off a big penalty, Bergeron can do it. Need someone to come in and ice the game in the shootout, Bergeron can do it, just ask Pekka Rinne. If you need a key faceoff win, Bergeron and his 57.8 faceoff win percentage can handle that for you.
“He’s so reliable”, said Bruins head coach Claude Julien after the Bruins victory in Washington on February 5. “Most of the time, he’s the first backchecker. He takes so much pride in doing his job down low. His wingers, their job is to take the slot and shots from the point.”
Bergeron has centered second-year-players Tyler Seguin and Brad Marchand since the season started, and the trio has by far been the Bruins best. Bergeron and Seguin are one and two on the team in points, Marchand is tied with David Krejci for fourth.
It’s no coincidence that Marchand and Seguin have flourished playing alongside the hardworking Bergeron
“That line as a whole has done a pretty good job. [Bergeron] has played with some more experienced players in the past” said Julien. “When you look at it, those are two guys in their second year. Tyler was not even a full-time player in his first year. Marsh is in his second year. Those young guys have done a tremendous job adapting to that.’’
Bruins fans have been pushing for Patrice Bergeron to get the league-wide recognition he deserves as year in and year out the veteran forward continuously gets snubbed from All Star Games and NHL Awards such as the Selke Trophy, but this year may different for Bergeron.
“I would have no argument with Patrice Bergeron either, as he’s an ace in the faceoff circle and anchors what may be the league’s most effective line (with Brad Marchand and Tyler Seguin) at even strength” writes Scott Cullen of TSN in regards to Bergeron possibly winning the Selke Award.
Each and every Bruin from Tim Thomas to Steven Kampfer has an important role on the Bruins, and each one is a key to the Bruins success, but in my eyes Bergeron is the most important asset the Black and Gold have.