Seguin finds a home at the top

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Seguin finds a home at the top

BOSTON -- Its only been two games, but its looking like Tyler Seguin has found a home on the Bruins top line with Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand.

The trio hasn't enjoyed the explosive scoring stretch that Marchand and Bergeron had last season when they were finally paired with Mark Recchi in the month of January, but it would take an act of the hockey gods to break up a group of forwards that seem made for each other.

Clearly Seguin is a phenomenon to himself as a 19-year-old mega-prospect finally coming into his own after getting tapped as the No .2 overall pick in the draft last summer, but he also knows that he needs skilled players like Bergeron and Marchand to compliment his offensive game. Both Bergeron and Marchand can help finish off Seguins creative play on the ice, and all three skate with the kind of speed, force and suffocating tenacity that far outweigh any downside.

I like playing with Bergeron and Seguin. I thought we played well together and really clicked out on the ice in the offensive zone, said Marchand. If we play like that consistently then hopefully were going to be a dangerous line, and that will allow us to stay together.

Seguin was good in a combination with Milan Lucic because he really forced the power forward to get his feet moving more quickly, and a pairing with Chris Kelly allowed the Bs two-way center to cover for some of his defensive inefficiencies along the way.

But the newly reconfigured gold line can effectively fore-check with speed and force, gives Seguin a pair of consistent finishers in Bergeron and Marchand and provides Seguin with the perfect lead-by-example player like Bergeron.

Everybody saw what happened in the second period against the Sens earlier this week when Seguin found Bergeron with a good-looking drop-back pass and the longtime Bs center showed the ability to pounce all over plays created by the second-year Seguin. Its no coincidence that Bergeron and Seguin are shooting the puck with more frequency than anybody else in the Black and Gold uniform, and that could be a dynamite playmaking combo moving forward.

Ive bounced around lines, and I never know what sticks and what doesnt, said Seguin. But Im going to just play my role and try to create chemistry with my linemates. Bergeron and Marchand both have great speed and were 1-1 as a team when were together. So we feel good as a line, and Im just stepping in trying to create speed and playmaking skills.

Theres plenty of long range wondering about Seguin as well with any number of trades potentially opening up a top-six roster spot for somebody hungering for a regular NHL job. Hypothetically any deals could open Seguin up for a chance to be one of the top two centers on the Bruins as early as this season, but it appears the Bruins are happy to have Seguin skating up and down the wall on the right wing. The daily responsibilities of a center are something Seguin will slowly or rapidly become accustomed to along with every other part of his game.

The long-range plans for Seguin are legion in Boston, and they include a great many things from the center position. But dont expect that move to the middle to come down this season permanently, and instead count on the youngster to form one of the most exciting lines in hockey alongside Marchand and Bergeron.

Bruins don't extend qualifying offer to Joe Morrow

Bruins don't extend qualifying offer to Joe Morrow

With free agency just around the corner, the Bruins have officially cut ties with former first-round pick and last bastion of the Tyler Seguin trade, Joe Morrow.

The 24-year-old Edmonton native arrived in Boston along with Loui Eriksson, Reilly Smith and Matt Fraser in exchange for Seguin when he was shipped to Dallas, and now all of those players have moved on from Boston as well. Boston does still carry Jimmy Hayes on their roster, a player traded from Florida in exchange for Smith, as a last remnant of the Seguin deal, but it isn't expected to be too long before Hayes moves on from Boston as well.  

The B’s announced on Monday afternoon that they hadn’t extended a qualifying offer to Morrow, as well as P-Bruins power forward Colton Hargrove, as a restricted free agent, and that both B’s youngsters were now free to sign with any of the 30 NHL teams as free agents.

The Bruins extended qualifying offers to restricted free agents in Noel Acciari, Linus Arnesson, Austin Czarnik, Zane McIntyre, David Pastrnak, Tim Schaller, Ryan Spooner and Malcolm Subban, and will retain the associated team rights with all of those players. Negotiations are ongoing between the Bruins and Pastrnak continue over a long term deal that would put him in the same $6 million plus per season level as teammate Brad Marchand, but one source with knowledge of the negotiations indicated it’s “not close” to being a done deal.

Some RFA’s like Spooner and Subban might not necessarily fit into the long term plan for the Black and Gold, but they need to maintain their rights if they hope to trade them as valued assets down the line.

Morrow never put together the talent that made him a former first-round pick while he was in Boston, and totaled just one assist in 17 games for the B’s before playing well in five playoff games after getting pushed into duty due to injuries. In all Morrow finished with two goals and nine points along with a minus-8 rating in 65 games over three seasons in Boston, but could never string together an extended run of consistent play at the NHL level.

With the Bruins in the market to bring on another left-shot defenseman into the Boston fold this summer, it was pretty clear that the time had come to move on from Morrow while allowing him to potentially develop as an NHL D-man elsewhere.