|TYLER SEGUIN Marchand’s helper|
Seguin is seeing strong signals
He is encouraged by 60-minute efforts
BEDFORD - Tyler Seguin was concerned with the Bruins’ quality rather than quantity as the team prepared for a two-game road trip yesterday.
“We’re not going into too much detail about actual wins and losses,’’ Seguin said before boarding a flight from Hanscom Field for tonight’s game against Phoenix. “We look at the way we played. We lost games we thought we played well in.
“The major part of the last two months, we played strong games, and that’s what we’re reflecting on, playing strong games and playing solid, 60-minute games. We’re happy we finished off the break with a solid, 60-minute game.’’
Seguin’s line finished off that game - an 8-0 victory over Florida Friday - with two Brad Marchand goals in the final period. And Seguin was keeping score at the end, providing an assist as Marchand completed a hat trick.
“Obviously, there wasn’t too much meaning to the goal during the game,’’ Seguin said. “But I knew it meant a lot to him, his first hat trick. We were waiting for the shift. We actually talked about it the shift before. It’s just kind of funny it happened the next shift. I’m glad for him.
“He’s improved a lot, obviously. I thought he had a great year last year, but he didn’t dwell on it too much and he’s come back even stronger.’’
The Bruins had an afternoon practice, their first workout since Friday.
“We’ll be a little tired at first, especially stepping off the plane after a long flight,’’ Seguin said. “But I thought it was a good idea to take an extra day to reflect - we’re not even halfway through the season - the first month, how we came out and how we reacted the last 25 games, or however it’s been.’’
After a 3-7-0 start, the Bruins have a 20-2-1 record since Nov. 1.
Shawn Thornton, a wing on Marchand’s line last season, said Marchand’s increased production is a result of “probably who he’s playing it with, I would say. It’s the not the same as me and Soup [Gregory Campbell]. He never lacked confidence, you can’t say that about him,’’ said Thornton. “He always had the potential, and right now, pucks are going in for him. He plays hard and does all the things right. He broke out with a 5-point game and, in the last month, he’s pretty much done everything.’’
Thornton said the Bruins were looking forward to the trip to Phoenix and Dallas.
“It’s sunny, it’s warm,’’ he said. “We’re a team that plays pretty well on the road, historically, and we like being on the road. We were home pretty much all of October. Now, we’re getting in the thick of it the next few months - eat, sleep, play hockey, that’s about it.
“This was a good break for me. I was on the couch for few days, not talking to anybody, away from hockey. You come back refreshed. The next months are going to be tedious if you don’t have time to yourself. A lot of guys went home to their families - that’s a good thing. I think guys come back refreshed.’’
The Bruins have a 10-3-0 road record this season.
“It will be nice,’’ said Marchand. “Road trips, you bond with the team. Especially after Christmas, you want to be with family and friends. Hopefully, we’ll have some fun.
“We have a tough schedule coming up. They kind of gave us some time early in the year to recover. Now, we have to get as much rest as we can and prepare for what’s coming up.
“We feel we have confidence out there now. On the ice, we seem to be connecting a little better. We have a deep team and I think that’s why we won last year and we’re doing well now. Any night, one line steps up.’’
Frank Dell’Apa can be reached at email@example.com.