2nd quarter started for the Bruins with their 11/26 game against the Carolina Hurricanes and ran through game 41 1/10 against the Penguins. The team sits at first in the division, having served themselves nuked Penguins twice in the past month.
Patrice Bergeron A. Handsdown the Bruins best skater, and probably the best player across this span. Has 14 points in his last twelve games, has only been a minus in 3 of the 21 games. Ends the quarter atop the Bruins scoring stack with powerplay, shorthanded, and even strength goals. Has brought his Fo% to over 54% on the season, enough to not only make him the only guy on the team over 50% on the season, but among the faceoff leaders for the NHL.
David Krejci C. In five games since the calender turned has yet to record a single point. Has been a minus player in 5 games this quarter. Had a mostly solid December, with 13 points in 14 games, and a +8. He also had a spirited fight with Michael Cammalleri of the Montreal Canadiens, and was involved in the post buzzer scrum in Buffalo. If if weren’t for his engagement away from the puck his grade would be lower.
Marc Savard (Note this grade adjusted for post concussion return) C. Savard offensively is probably slightly ahead of where Bergeron was at the same point in his return. His other areas are still notably behind the curve, but then offense has always been Savards meat and potatoes, the rest of his arsenal are more recent acquisitions and will probably take the most time to get back to par. Last year for example, Savard played about 1:03 per game shorthanded, this year it’s about seven seconds a game.
Greg Campbell: B I could almost copy his first quarter report card and paste it here. Biggest difference is he has taken far fewer penalties. He has scored less, but part of that is less ice time. In October and early November there are plenty of games of 16+ minutes of TOI, in the 2nd Quarter he has only 3 games over 15 minutes at all.
Tyler Seguin (Rookie): C+ has gotten better at using his linemates, and is also more aware of all the players on the ice in all three zones. Has spent time on multiple lines, good effort most lines, but needs to uses his speed better. He’s got high end speed even for the NHL, but is often skating at the same speed as opponents. When he explodes at an opponent he’s quite likely to come up with the puck.
Milan Lucic: B-, before looking at the stats I was prepared to write a rip job, and while all the things I noted are true a look at the numbers say there’s little to not difference between the guy who is currently second on the team in points, and the guy who was first in the team in points half a month ago. No, he hasn’t looked good since the start of the year, but he’s also been skating with the still recovering Savard, and the clearly nursing an upper body injury Nathan Horton. Needs to be more intimidating, needs to decide to pick the team up and carry them once or twice a month.
Shawn Thornton: B, he should probably have beaten Matt Cooke down again if given the opportunity, is doing everything you can ask of your enforcer and more, has been very consistent in both taking other teams goons off the ice, and not taking stupid penalties of his own.
Daniel Paille C, has finally earned his way back into the lineup, sorta. Hasn’t shown himself to be as effective as last year, but not really a liability.
Nathan Horton: C, hasn’t scored a powerplay goal since November. But has dished the puck relatively well, and has at least kept passing well during his recent nagging injury. With luck he can jump back into the fray when he returns, He hasn’t quite made it to the level of scapegoat, but his star is not so well polished as it once was.
Mark Recchi: C+ despite a December that was a downturn over November, he’s on pace for more points (but two fewer goals) than last season. Like Bergeron was only a minus player three times in 2nd Quarter, none more than a -1. Is taking more penalties right now than earlier in the year.
Blake Wheeler: C+ Consistently strong effort, but his timing on shots is just slightly off. He’s on pace for a nearly identical points total to last year, with a better plus minus. If the Bruin’s were to lose another defenseman I would actually be in favor of trying him on the blueline for a while. He’s developed enough of an edge to be sixth in hits for Bruins forwards, and has the ability to pass and skate the puck out of the zone. Had one more goal in 2nd Quarter than first, has been reunited (to mixed success) with Ryder and Krejci once or twice this season.
Michael Ryder: B- Needs to both hit and shoot more. He’s currently third in goals, and sixth in points and assists. Has two of the teams game winners in 2nd quarter, has been most productive on the powerplay, and has recently been cycled through Savard’s wing at even strength.
Brad Marchand: B+ After Bergeron has been the most consistent forward. Just for comparison, last season in 20 games he had 1 point, and was a -3, in 2nd quarter in 8 points and +7. Has been earned his way off a very effective fourth line. The Bruins could do worse than to have him keeping the pressure on other, higher salaried players. Could probably stand to be a touch more obnoxious and draw some more penalties.