By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.com Bruins Insider Follow @hackswithhaggs
BOSTON -- Tyler Seguin is on pace to score 123 points and post a plus-82 rating after the first two games of his second NHL season.
The 19-year-old rolled his eyes and laughed when apprised of the blistering pace hes on after notching three assists in his first pair of NHL games, and that reaction comes with the knowledge hes not likely to see those numbers in even his best seasons.
Hes had a pair of very good games while showing off the kind of confidence, poise, skill and strength thats part of Seguin 2.0 in his second NHL season, and hes also continuously placing new challenges in front of himself. Now its about getting that first goal after hitting a couple of posts in the first two games, and racking up three assists while setting up teammates all over the ice.
I definitely did a good job in the preseason and training camp, and now its about staying consistent. Thats my goal during the season, said Seguin. I know I have a few assists, but I dont have any goals.
I guess the word for it is maybe slowing down. Its finding my game in this league and Im still sort of working on it. Its only been two games, so we have a long way to go this year.
Coach Claude Julien has sounded like something of a broken record on his teenaged offensive catalyst, but actions are speaking just as loudly as the words from Seguins teammates and the coaching staff. The vision all over the ice has greatly improved, hes anticipating things before they happen on the ice and hes willing to do the dirty work required to help create scoring chances in the offensive end.
In other words Seguin is turning into exactly what the Bruins thought they were getting after they selected him with the No. 2 overall pick two summers ago and its happening in only his second season.
Its not complicated. Its confidence, number one," Julien said. "Its the experience of having a year in the league. Over the course of the summer, hes had an opportunity to get a little bit stronger. I can see all that stuff in practice, never mind in games. He goes in the corner now. He battles against Zdeno Chara, and hell battle like he really wants the puck.
Last year he kind of looked over his shoulder, going from juniors to going against the biggest guy in the league. Thats a pretty big step, so all that stuff just feels more comfortable. Now that hes more comfortable, his talent is just starting to show more and more. We just want him to continue playing that way, and were going to encourage him to.
At this point thats exactly what it comes down to for Seguin: Doing it consistently over the course of an 82-game gauntlet and seeing where the numbers stack up at the end of the year while skating with a third line cast of characters like Chris Kelly and Benoit Pouliot.