The Boston Bruins have 16 different goal scorers going into their Thursday night game against the New York Rangers.
Tomas Nosek is not one of them.
It’s not for lack of effort, though. In fact, Nosek nearly potted the game-winner in the Bruins’ eventual 6-5 overtime win over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday night, but Nosek rang the post and remained scoreless through Boston’s first 10 games.
Even though Nosek has yet to appear on the score sheet, head coach Jim Montgomery knows his selflessness has helped him contribute to the Bruins’ success thus far.
“He’s a guy that I trust in every situation. You can see when we tied the game up (against the Penguins) and I put him and Charlie Coyle and (Nick) Foligno out there because you trust those players,” Montgomery told reporters after Thursday’s practice at Madison Square Garden. “They’re going to manage the game well, they’re going to continue to put your team in good situations, and he does that. (Jakub) Lauko’s goal doesn’t happen if he’s not selfless, driving the middle, occupying both defensemen, which it’s a great play by Nicky and it’s a great finish by Lauko. But it doesn’t happen if he’s not selfless. And those are things that a lot of times don’t end up on the stat sheet, but as a team structure, you love it.”
Lauko noticed two Pittsburgh defenders playing Nosek and was able to open up a passing lane that Foligno saw the whole way and perfectly fed the puck to Lauko for his first career goal.
Nosek’s first goal of the season will come, there’s no doubt about it. Eventually he’ll get some puck luck, but until then, he’s helping create scoring chances for his Bruins teammates and contributing in ways that don’t get noticed on the score sheet.
We’ll see if Nosek can amass goal No. 1 on Thursday when the Bruins look to make it seven straight wins when they take on the Rangers. Puck drop is set for 7:30 p.m. ET and you can catch the game on ESPN+.