Bruins’ center Patrice Bergeron will be the second player to be featured on NHL 36 a half hour long show that chronicles 36 hours in a player’s life. The 26 year old center is often labeled as one of not only the Bruins, but the NHL’s most underrated players. Having just entered the Triple Gold Club, winning a World Championship in 2004, World Junior Championship in 2006 and the Stanley Cup last year, he is one of just 25 players and it is starting to become more obvious to those outside Boston how valuable of a player Bergeron is.
Selected 45th overall in the 2003 draft, Bergeron began playing for the Bruins right away, ending his first season with 39 points in 71 games. When the Bruins traded Joe Thornton in 2005, Bergeron became the player the Bruins organization decided to grow their team around. The organization believed he was the right player for the job because of what he brought to the team both on and off the ice, and Bergeron is yet to disappoint.
While he has had his fair share of setbacks due to injuries with his concussion in the 2007-2008 season and another head injury the next season, he has always bounced back. In 2010 Bergeron finished his season with 19 goals and 33 assists. It was in that same year that he first played with future hall of famer Mark Recchi, where the two no doubt left lasting impressions on the each other. Recchi learned the importance of Bergeron to the Bruins, agreeing with many Bergeron supporters that he is one of the best defensive centers in the league, singing his praises openly in his time with the team and now retired. In their time playing together Bergeron was also able to learn a lot from Recchi, like the role of mentor to younger players, even though he is still young himself.
That same role of mentor and growing in his leadership role, may be what has allowed Bergeron to notch 21 assists this season already almost as many as his 35 from last year. Playing center to Seguin and Marchand embodies what the Bruins most likely envisioned for him when they began to build their team around him and eventually gave him the “A”. He may never be a league leader in goals or be the most obvious choice for all-star games, but more importantly he’s an all around contributor to the team. He works hard at both ends of the ice every game, playing a well-rounded, consistent game. NHL 36 will be a great opportunity for Bruins fans and hockey fans alike to not only get to know Bergeron better, but to come to appreciate him more.