Brian Rolston has found some kind of fountain of youth.
Perhaps its because he was able to conserve energy while resting and rehabbing from injuries during stretches where he wasnt playing for the New York Islanders, or maybe its simply a veteran player that can taste the playoffs coming straight ahead.
But Rolston has looked far from a 39-year-old hockey player over the last few weeks while acting as a two-way catalyst for a Bs third line thats been carrying the Bruins offense during their winning stretch of games.
Rolston has 11 points (3 goals and 8 assists) in his last six games, and some of his teammates think hes just found the fountain of youth. Or as Rolston joked he has a forged birth certificate, though anybody thats seen him over the last 20 years know exactly how long hes been excelling in the NHL.
Hes playing like hes 29 years old, said Kelly. He brings a lot to the table. Not only with the goals going in and points coming, but he plays the game on a consistent basis regardless of points or no points. He shows up to play every game and he plays in all three zones. Guys like him know what it takes to play a long time and have success in this league.
Rolston, Kelly and fellow linemate Benoit Pouliot have all stepped up their games together with the playoffs right around the corner, and thats no coincidence. Rolston has won a Stanley Cup before and he knows that this run with the Bruins might be his best, last chance to win one again.
I wanted to play as hard as I could and get back to the way that I can produce, said Rolston. I feel great right now. I sat out a little bit with the Islanders and it took me a little while to get into my game shape. But I feel great right now.
Its working well with our line and we want to continue doing that. Its been a lot of fun to be a part of this team. With winning comes confidence and beating a couple of hungry teams in California certainly bring you some confidence. But youve got to be ready every night.
More than the points that is probably what Rolston brings to the table most prominently: the even-keeled professional approach to the highs and lows that the Bruins will most assuredly be bracing for in the next few weeks with the playoffs on the horizon. Rolston isnt Mark Recchi, but it never hurts to have a couple more veteran hands with the Stanley Cup gauntlet approaching.