Peverley looking to prove value in playoffs

Peverley looking to prove value in playoffs
May 3, 2013, 5:00 pm
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WILMINGTON, MA -– After sitting for Game 1 in a move that was perhaps designed to motivate him, Rich Peverley appears to be destined to play in Game 2 against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday night.

Peverley was back skating in a gray jersey with Chris Kelly and Jaromir Jagr for Friday’s practice at Ristuccia Arena, and that pushed Kaspars Daugavins back to what appears to be “healthy scratch” status for this weekend. It’s a logical move to get Peverley back into the mix given his offensive upside, speed and versatility playing on a forward line with the highly skilled Jagr.

For his part, Peverley sounded extremely motivated after being forced to sit and watch the start of the playoffs.

“We won the game, so I guess it was a good decision,” said Peverley of getting the playoff scratch. “I’ve always prided myself on my play during the playoffs, so I hope if I’m in there that I can prove to be a valuable part of the team. [I support] whatever it takes to win the game.

“If I do play, then hopefully I can add something to a lineup that’s playing pretty good."

Peverley had only six goals and 18 points in 42 games along with a team-worst minus-9 in a season the Bruins forward certainly would like to forget. But the shifty, versatile forward is also a valuable player that can help on all special teams, and can step in for face-offs if his center is booted out of the face-off circle.

It made sense for Peverley to ultimately be back in the lineup over a player in Daugavins that was waived by the Senators just a month ago. Now he gets a chance to trump his poor regular season with a stellar Stanley Cup Playoff performance.

Claude Julien said that Peverley “absolutely” will get into the Black and Gold mix during this playoff series against the Maple Leafs, but wasn’t going to give anything away that wasn’t already revealed among the practice lines.

“I don’t think we’ve intended on sitting him the whole time,” said Julien. “We started off with a lineup that we felt deserved to start the last game, and now we have an opportunity to decide what we want to do.”

If Peverley can be the guy that had three goals and five points in the seven-game series against the Capitals last season, then he’ll be able to give the Bruins a big boost.

“It hasn’t really been a good year for me, so this is something I was looking forward to, playing well toward the end of the regular season and then into the playoffs,” said Peverley, who finished with a goal and assist in his final two games of the regular season. 

“I take a lot of pride in that, so hopefully that happens. Watching up in the press box you saw that we played one of our best games of the season [in Game 1], so you just want to be a part of that.”

It looks like Peverley will be a part of it on Saturday night for the B’s third line, and that’s a positive development for the player and his hockey club.

Boston may finally get their first chance this season to see what it looks like to have three legitimate scoring lines ready to overwhelm opponents with their depth as they did two years ago.