BOSTON -- Jordan Caron has shown his potential in flashes this season for the Bruins, and that potential flashed again on Monday night.
Caron, 22, dominated Carolina center Jordan Staal along the boards to retain possession in the offensive zone, and then used his 6-foot-2, 210-pound frame at the front of the net to pounce on a rebound in Boston’s 6-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes on Monday night.
It was a nice piece of dogged work for Caron, who battled alongside Shawn Thornton in front of the Carolina net and eventually backhanded a rebound chance from the slot off a Rich Peverley shot from the left circle.
It was also Caron’s work along the boards that kept the puck in the offensive zone after Thornton eschewed a pass to a speeding Caron when breaking into the offensive zone, and carried the puck in himself. Later in the shift, Thornton made up for that by working to free the puck in front after Peverley’s shot, which directly led to Caron’s “Johnny on the spot” goal.
The bottom line is that Caron was doing plenty of the dirty work Boston’s going to need in order to produce offense these days.
“[His work ethic] is pretty good, because I liked his game tonight,” said coach Claude Julien. “I thought he was a pretty good player, strong along the walls and he was moving pretty good. For a guy who has been in and out [of the lineup], comes in there and gives you that kind of a game . . . I was pretty happy with that.”
Sure, the game was an indictment of a hapless Carolina team that seems more concerned with May tee times than fighting battles during the last month of the regular season. But the new forward lines helped produce a season-high six goals, and the combination of Caron, Rich Peverley and Shawn Thornton combined for a pair of hard-working goals in the victory.
Caron finished with his first goal of the season and a plus-2 rating in 11:24 of ice time.
“Yeah, that’s always been my play and keep being strong on the puck and stuff like that,” said Caron. “It’s fun to create some 'O'-zone time and holding it down low and I think I did a good job on that shift."
“I think I’d been playing good lately. This year obviously the points are not always there, but I think I’m doing a good job on the forecheck and stuff like that. I was pretty happy when they told me [Monday] morning I was going to play.”
Caron had been a healthy scratch for the previous two games, but that won’t be happening again anytime soon if he can build on a positive first step against Carolina on Monday night. It would certainly help the Bruins and Caron if he can find his game like he did during the final six weeks of last year’s regular season, when he carved out a spot for himself on the B's before the lockout and injuries pulled a 1-2 combination on his chances to make an immediate impact this year.