BOSTON — The Bruins have been one of the league’s best teams through the first quarter of the shortened NHL season, and they’ve been able to do so without getting much of anything from one of their best players.
Tyler Seguin‘s production is down, by his standards at least, through the first 11 games. After Tuesday night’s shootout loss to the Rangers, Seguin has just two goals (one an empty-netter) and four assists.
That would likely be a pretty strong point of contention, but the Bruins’ 8-1-2 start has made Seguin’s struggles a little easier to swallow. Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli is also waiting for Seguin to come around.
“Yeah, he’s been missing the net a lot, too,” Chiarelli said prior to Boston’s game with the Rangers. “[Seguin has] got to bear down. But he’s like the rest of us, like the other night in Buffalo, we had a huge territorial advantage and a lot of shots and a lot of missed nets. And I’ve seen this before with this team and we just got to get our minds in the right places and the pucks will start to come in — and that applies to [Seguin] too.”
Some of Seguin’s early-season struggles may also be attributed to playing in Europe during the lockout. While Seguin was able to stay in game shape by playing overseas, there are also some who feel the wide-open game there can lead to bad habits.
“I think with him it was a little bit of the habits of the European ice for him, he’s gotten used to, he has more space,” Chiarelli said. “I saw him score some goals on tape and they were from an angle that he’d never shoot at here, just because the angle was there, there’s no coverage and there’s wider space.
“That stuff has to come out of his game and it will. The last four games for [Seguin], I was looking at his grades I gave him earlier today, and he’s been coming.”
Seguin was held pointless on Tuesday night and was a plus-1 with three shots in 17:40 of ice time.