(Photo Credit: Matthew J.Lee/GlobeS)
By Court Lalonde (follow @courtlalonde)
Torey Krug has always been known for his offensive ability but has lacked a two-way game. Just never seemed like the defensemen the Boston Bruins could put on the ice when the game was on the line. This year started a little different for him because he was one of the veterans on the blue line and was going to have to change a couple of things, so the team didn’t have the same outcome. Krug has been one of the whipping boys for some Bruins fans along with fellow defensemen Zdeno Chara.
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This season I believe he has turned some opinions and heads of Bruins fans and around the National Hockey League. Currently, he is tied for fifth in scoring amongst NHL defensemen with Dustin Byfuglien and Duncan Keith at 51 points. He is ahead of Shea Weber and Drew Doughty just to name a few. Out of the eights goals he has scored this year, six of them along with 19 assists came on the power play to help give the Bruins the seventh best power play in the league. He has been the power play quarterback the Bruins always wanted him to be and then some. His production on the man advantage has him tied for third amongst NHL defensemen for goals. He scored one of the nicest looking goals a Bruin has scored all year against the Ottawa Senators after a small altercation with Dion Phaneuf.
— ESPN NHL coverage (@ESPN_NHL) March 22, 2017
It has been more than just his offense this year that we his fans are noticing on the ice. We have seen his strong play on the defensive side of the puck and is fourth on his team in blocked shots with 82. During this six-game winning streak, Krug along with his partner Adam McQuaid have been two of the best defensemen on the ice for the Bruins when we have needed them to be. In the last six games, he has one goal, two assists, but has been plus five and has been playing in most situations for the Bruins. Bruce Cassidy even used him on the penalty kill against the Dallas Stars during this winning streak, and he didn’t miss a beat. If the Bruins are going to win any series this year in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, they’re going to need Krug to continue his play and even ramp it up.
“This city is unbelievable to play in playoffs, the passion of the fans.” pic.twitter.com/70hlrVVxDZ
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) April 5, 2017
During the 2013-14 playoffs, he had two goals, eight assists, for ten points in 12 games. The playoffs are where I first noticed Krug during the Bruins last run to the Stanley Cup finals in the 2012-13 season. The good news is he has a history of playing well in the playoffs and will be going into with a career year and a coach that has confidence in him. With Chara not getting any younger, this will be a different playoff run with a different look. The team will rely on Krug to carry the load when it comes to offense from the point and chip in on the defensive side as well. If he can carry over his play from the season into the post season, we shouldn’t have any concerns.