Ever since the likes of Bobby Orr and Ray Bourque stopped wearing the Black and Gold, the Boston Bruins have been looking for that puck moving defenseman. Many thought it would be Dougie Hamilton, and he may well be that guy, but he still has things to learn. Instead, a relatively unknown defenseman named Torey Krug has become that offensive defenseman and a cult hero in Boston.
Krug was pressed into action with Dennis Seidenberg, Andrew Ference, and Wade Redden sidelined with injuries. And did Krug ever deliver. In the five games against the New York Rangers, Krug scored four goals and an assist. He became the first rookie defenseman to score four goals in his first five playoff games. All from a kid who had played just three NHL games before now.
His ability to produce offensively really shouldn't come as too much of a surprise. Krug had 13 goals and 32 assists with the Providence Bruins this season and scored 26 goals and 57 assists in three years at Michigan State. This is reason that Peter Chiarelli signed him a year ago. He's been an offensive force wherever he has played.
What has really endeared Krug to the fans is that he's scored big goals and was beating one of the league's best goalies, Henrik Lundqvist. But the most important thing he has done is make the Bruins power play a legitimate threat. He's scored three times on the man advantage, the most out of the Bruins players.
It's not just the offense that has impressed many. Krug has not looked overmatch at all when in his own zone. He plays a sound defensive game and doesn't make many mistakes. Being paired with a stay-at-home partner in Adam McQuaid certainly helps. Despite being undersized, Krug is not afraid to play against anyone. And he showed that he can the few times he was matched up against Rick Nash.
Every time Krug stepped on the ice, he seemed to make something happen. Whether it was a dazzling individual rush up the ice or a solid defensive play to keep the puck out of the Bruins, he always seemed to be in the right place at the right time. It's clear that Krug is ready for the NHL. Don't expect to see Ference or Redden back in the lineup anytime soon.
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