The stock of Bruins center Patrice Bergeron has never been higher

Patrice Bergeron Bruins center
Patrice Bergeron leads the NHL in plus/minus. Credit: Getty Images

It may not be entirely fair to Patrice Bergeron that he’s been consistently excellent for so long that it feels like Boston fans sometimes take him for granted.

Along with the likes of Red Wings center Pavel Datsyuk and Blackhawks center Jonathan Toews, Bergeron is on a very short list of the top two-way forwards in the NHL as his Selke Trophy (top defensive forward) from 2011-12 proves. A second-round pick of the B’s in 2003, Bergeron was the rare rookie that made the team right out of the gate as an 18-year-old despite not being a top 30 draft choice.

Always accountable and well-spoken, Bergeron is the pro’s pro on a team full of similar personalities. When he described Boston’s mentality after their 2-1 shootout loss to Montreal on Monday, he could have been talking about himself as well.

“Our mentality all year has been ‘don’t get too high or too low,’” Bergeron said. “This last stretch of the [regular] season is busy with travel and games so you get used to it, it feels like the playoffs.”

Against Montreal, Boston trailed, 1-0, virtually the entire way until Bergeron tied it late with a perfectly executed tip-in.

His Selke year (22 goals, 42 assists, plus-36) was the best of his career but he’s not far off this season with 23 goals (second on the team), 28 assists and plus-36 (which leads the NHL). Bergeron is also a force on the faceoff dot where his 58.8 percentage is third in the league. Along with fellow centers David Krejci and Chris Kelly, Bergeron is an assistant captain of what is, right now, the top team in hockey.


The legend of Bergeron grew exponentially during last season’s Stanley Cup Final vs. Chicago as he left Game 5 in an ambulance with what turned out to be a broken rib and torn cartilage. Hockey players are renowned for their toughness and lack of ego but Bergeron took it to another level as he suited up for Game 6 and even continued to play after he sustained another serious blow – a separated shoulder. While his stock has risen on the Bruins and in the NHL, Bergeron’s value has also skyrocketed internationally as he represented Team Canada last month for the second straight Olympics. This time around in Sochi, he was one of the team’s top players and was shifted to Sidney Crosby’s line as Canada captured another gold medal.

Like any good player or coach, Bergeron is always focused on the next practice and game. Thursday has some added significance as Chicago returns to the Garden (7 p.m., NESN) for the first time since that fateful Game 6 when they won the Stanley Cup.

“[The Blackhawks] are a tough matchup, we expect the same type of atmosphere that we saw for Montreal,” Bergeron said.

Follow Metro Boston Bruins beat writer Richard Slate on Twitter: @RichSlate



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

MTA announces service changes for Sunday

The MTA has announced service changes ahead of Sunday's People's Climate March, which will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday. Riders using…

Local

NYPD launches Twitter account for L train

The NYPD recently launched a Twitter handle dedicated to the L train and its riders. According to @NYPDLtrain, officers went underground Thursday morning to hand…

Local

Bushwick community space offers activists a place to…

A new Bushwick community space offers community activists to meet, create, learn and throw back a few cold ones. MayDay, located 214 Starr Street in Bushwick,…

Local

Activists gearing up for Sunday's "historic" People's Climate…

If all goes according to plan, more than 100,000 people will gather near Central Park West on Sunday morning and march through midtown to raise…

Movies

Kevin Smith makes peace with the Internet

I was thinking about Ain't It Cool News and Harry Knowles last night, wondering if anyone from Ain't It Cool had reviewed my new movie…

Movies

Art imitates life in 'Swim Little Fish Swim'

There's a certain comfort to be taken in finding that young artists are still moving to New York and trying to make it — and…

Movies

Review: Terry Gilliam's 'The Zero Theorem' is better…

Terry Gilliam's latest, "The Zero Theorem," concerns a reclusive malcontent (Christoph Waltz) struggling with the search for the meaning of life.

Music

Esperanza Spalding and a being called Emily get…

Esperanza Spalding is about to spiral off in a brand new direction that may or may include an alter ego named Emily.

NFL

Oday Aboushi ready for increased role, and to…

Oday Aboushi might feel comfortable enough to engage in some trash talk the next time he is on the field.

NFL

Giants vs. Texans: 3 things to watch

The Giants host the surprising Texans (2-0) in what may already be a must-win game for Big Blue.

NFL

Eric Decker misses practice again, could miss Monday

Jets wide receiver Eric Decker missed practice Thursday as he continues to rehab a hamstring injury suffered last Sunday.

MLB

Derek Jeter still focused on baseball as final…

Derek Jeter has effectively hid his emotions for 20 years in the Bronx.

Parenting

A sneaky way to serve kids fruits and…

"My First Juices and Smoothies" gives smoothie recipes for kids.

Style

3 things we love from Day 1 of…

The highlights from Day 1 of Milan Fashion Week.

Sex

Why don't more couples use condoms?

  Call it the “condom moment.” That’s the name the authors of a new study have given to the pivotal conversation every couple should be…

Sex

Need an idea for a first date? Here's…

Picture your idea of a nice first date. Is it dinner and a movie? A visit to an interesting museum exhibit? Instead, an expert on…