– Remind Boston Bruins Head Coach Claude Julien that David Krejci
led all playoff scorers with 12 goals and 11 assists during the Cup run (not that he could forget), and he’ll say it was no surprise.
|Lucic and Krejci celebrate a goal against the Islanders. |
Krejci has been a consistent big-time player in the playoffs for the Bruins, and Julien doesn’t expect any different this year, either.
“But one thing I know about David – he’s never had a tough time getting up for playoffs," said Julien. “He led the scoring in the playoffs last year – the year before when he got hurt in Philly he was arguably our best player at the time – so [his consistency is] certainly not a concern for us.
"I think David gets excited about playoffs and he’s always been a good player for us and I don’t expect that to change.”
Despite reaching a career-high with 23 goals this season, Krejci hit an uneven stretch where he had just three points (all assists) in 15 games from Jan 24. – Feb. 28, before he broke his slump against the New Jersey Devils March 1 and had three assists.
Through that slump, which was followed by a five-game point streak, Krecji had a -8 plus/minus rating.
But that portion of the season is in the distant past for the Bruins forward, who is very excited for the puck to drop Thursday against the Washington Capitals.
“Yeah, this is a fun time,” Krejci said. “We all know that we’ve had a success in past, but this kind of a new season, a new year, so you got to start from the beginning.
"We got to start with a good game tomorrow and go from there.”
When Krejci hits the ice Thursday night to try and duplicate his past postseason potency, he’ll be doing so against Caps rookie goalie Braden Holtby.
“We are going to have put lots of pucks on him and try to make him nervous,” Krejci said. “Just don’t pass up on any shots, get some traffic in – we should get some chances.”
Krejci also said that the Bruins are going to have to be strong in their defensive zone against a dangerous Capitals team if they want to successfully create chances in their own end.
But when the Bruins set forth on that task, they’ll be doing so with forward Nathan Horton
, who will miss the 2012 playoffs as announced
by General Manager Peter Chiarelli earlier today.
“I was hoping he was going to be back for first, second round, who knows, but now we know he won’t,” Krejci said. “It kind of [stinks], but that’s how it goes sometimes.
“This is still his life and he’s got to take care of his own body. He’s been pushing it, and if it doesn’t feel well there’s nothing he can do. I had a concussion two times so I know how it is; this is not an easy situation.
"I wish him the best of luck in his recovery and hopefully he’ll be back next season.”
However, the Bruins have played 35 games without Horton since he suffered his concussion Jan. 22 and Krejci is confident that his team has enough depth to compensate for the loss.
“It’s kind of hard – you don’t want to lose one of the best players, but that’s how it is,” Krejci said. “ We’ve been playing without him for, I don’t know, about three months now. We can find a way to win the games even without him.
"We've still got a good team here and I believe in it and I believe we can make a good run."