Since Patrice Bergeron has settled into the role of defensive shutdown center, his overall contributions often have been overlooked by the rest of the NHL.
That appears to be changing.
Bergeron, who had his best offensive month since suffering a career-threatening concussion in October 2007, was named the league's first star for the month of January on the strength of his 17 points (eight goals, nine assists) in 14 games. Meanwhile, his defensive game did not suffer, as he posted a plus-13 rating for the month.
Bergeron was appreciative of the honor and, as is his style, gave credit to linemates Mark Recchi and Brad Marchand. But he felt the only difference in his game last month was that puck luck was on his side.
"I really feel I was playing the same way before. It's just that the puck wasn't going in," Bergeron said. "I feel like this is my role now, and it's not always going to show on the scoresheet, the details and all those things. That's part of the gig, I guess. I'm fine with it. I'm doing whatever my team wants me to do. But it's nice to have those points go in and help defensively as well."
Bergeron's contributions will be especially important now that Marc Savard is out indefinitely because of his second significant concussion in less than a year. But Bergeron doesn't want to change anything.
Patrice Bergeron's month star-worthy
Boston Herald | Feb 1