B's Krug bouncing back from rookie mistakes in Finals

B's Krug bouncing back from rookie mistakes in Finals
June 19, 2013, 12:15 am
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(AP Images)

BOSTON –- While the Bruins are no longer receiving the kind of instant offense from Torey Krug that they benefitted from in the second round against the New York Rangers, the team is more satisfied that the 22-year-old rookie has bounced back from his Game 1 stumble.

The puck-moving defenseman finished Game 1 at a minus-2 and opened the door for the Blackhawks with a crushing turnover in the third period that turned into a Dave Bolland goal for Chicago. That followed some early shaky shifts from the rookie, and it was openly wondered whether the Bruins coaching staff might opt for Matt Bartkowski or Wade Redden rather than the 5-foot-9, 180-pound rookie defenseman.

Krug had been benched for the rest of the third period and much of the first overtime in Game 1, but it probably helped that things extended into triple OT where he got back into the game. Because the young defenseman has been able to stabilize his game, and work through the kinks in his game that were still there in the opening minutes of Game 2 at United Center.

“I’ve been able to stick with my game, and do what I do. What’s been nice is that the coaching staff has shown the confidence in me to do that,” said Krug. “Even in Game 2 when I had that turnover, but I was out for the next shift. That can be important that mentally you’re still in it rather than getting cold on the bench.

“When you’re down a little bit and things aren’t going your way, you can kind of wonder. But then your coach comes along and gives you a pat on the back. That confidence can go a long way on the mental side of the game.”

Krug agrees with the notion that it wouldn’t have been possible if the Bruins coaching staff hadn’t shown faith and trust in him, allowing him some energy to boost his spirits when he got a little too frenetic to start the game. Now it’s about adding the offensive component back into his game with just a single assist in his last seven playoff games along with a plus-1 rating.

“It was a matter of time that things were going to slow, and hopefully the fans aren’t too upset,” said Krug. “I’m still getting my opportunities, but at this time of year it can be really hard to score some goals. But I still feel confident getting in the play and joining the rushes, but it’s just a shame that it’s not going in right now.”

A Game 4 setting at TD Garden could be as good any for a Krug explosion, as the Bruins defensemen corps doesn’t have a single goal in the Stanley Cup Finals after leading the NHL through the first three rounds of the postseason.