Bruins fans are no doubt disappointed at the way the season ended, and also in the playoff performance of some members of the team. One Bruin fans weren’t disappointed with during their short playoff run, and this season, was Selke nominee Patrice Bergeron. He has once again proven to fans and the NHL, what sets him apart from not only other athletes, but other Bruins. Fans know Bergeron as a hard worker and integral part of our team, but watching him play with a broken nose and strained oblique was further proof of that.
While he wasn’t able to take face-offs, and it ended up hurting the team, Bergeron did everything in his power to make up for it during his time on ice. Bergeron strained his oblique in game three of the series, and aggravated it in game 5, the same game where his nose was broken. Regardless of his injuries, Patrice still continued to battle for pucks, and create scoring chances, more than we can say for some non-injured members of the team, showing not just his skill, but his character as well. His drive is what sets him apart, and will continue to make him one of the best members of the team.
Aside from what he contributes on ice, it’s clear he also plays a big role in mentoring his teammates off the ice. After Seguin’s OT goal in game 6, Bergeron applauded him just as much for his defensive work before the goal as he did for the goal itself. This is a testament to the way Patrice models his game, and is likely encouraging Tyler to do the same. It’s great to see him helping others improve their game, and it appears to be working for him as he recently received the Selke Award nomination for his outstanding defensive abilities.
As a hockey fan, hearing the injuries at the end of the season is always interesting to me; it’s what sets apart hockey players from other athletes. You’ll never see a baseball player get stitched up and immediately return to the field, but in hockey it’s expected. While the Bruins didn’t have the cup run we would have liked, seeing some of our best players show up and play through injuries is a promising sign that come next year that same drive to be champions will be there. Chara, Bergeron, and their broken noses may not have gotten the ultimate hardware this year, but both have an opportunity to pick up some awards in the off-season. Bergeron will be up for the Selke, and Chara is a finalist for the Norris Trophy, an award given to the defenseman with the best all-around ability.