Monday, May 23, 2011
No points for Seguin in Games 3 and 4
By Joe McDonald
BOSTON -- Boston Bruins’ rookie Tyler Seguin took full advantage of an opportunity that was presented to him at the start of the Eastern Conference finals against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Teammate Patrice Bergeron was sidelined due to a concussion and missed Games 1 and 2, so Bruins coach Claude Julien decided to lean on the 19-year-old rookie until Bergeron was ready to come back.
Seguin’s performance forced Julien to keep him in the lineup once Bergeron was cleared to return. Seguin provided a major offensive spark, recording a total of three goals and three assists for six points in the first two games. When Bergeron returned for Game 3 in Tampa, Julien made it clear that Seguin would remain and veteran forward Shawn Thornton was the odd-man out.
Seguin did not register a point in Game 3 or Game 4 and Julien believes the Lightning haven’t made adjustments on the rookie.
“I don’t think their game has changed, they are just aware when he’s on the ice,” explained Julien. “I think that’s what you do when a player does a lot of good things, you say listen we have to be aware when he’s out there and it’s as simple as that. Tyler [Seguin] really played well here the first two games, he certainly didn’t play bad in Tampa, but he didn’t have the same impact. And that’s what happens when you’re on the road and you don’t have the last change and you have situations, it’s a lot tougher for everybody.”
After the Bruins’ game-day skate this morning at TD Garden in preparation for Game 5, Seguin said he’s preparing for the long haul.
“I felt comfortable after Game 1,” Seguin said. “Obviously I’m still learning some playoff stuff, but I feel good. I feel like I’m competing and I still want to raise that compete level and battle level and get things rolling more.”
The Lightning has played a more physical game against Seguin in order to slow him down. Tampa’s aware of his game-changing speed, but according to coach Guy Boucher, he’s not about to change his system because of only one player.
“Well, I'll be honest with you, we felt he's played really well,” Boucher said. “But if you're going to focus on him, then you're not going to focus on the other guys, and they're the ones that are going to get you.
“So the reality is there's too many good players on that team. They've got a terrific team with a lot of guys who can make the difference. So if you start focusing on one guy in particular, you're going to focus on the wrong thing. So whether we play against Seguin that's playing really well or other guys, it's a team defense that we've played all year long. So we're not going to change that.”