Bergeron, Bruins Pack Up
Monday, 04.9.2007 / 3:31 PM ET / News
Patrice Bergeron looked like he was about to go to the dentist’s office (sorry Dr. Byrne) when he was asked about this season.
"It’s going to be very disappointing to see the playoffs on TV," said the young Bruins assistant captain. "We could have been there, but we didn’t play good (enough) all the time and we were inconsistent the whole year.
"And that is why we are where we are now."
Where the Bruins are now is in the locker room, packing.
And it does not sit well in anyone’s craw -- particularly Bergeron’s.
"I just think we have to play more as a team," said Bergeron, giving his opinion as to an antidote. "We have to stick to the game plan a little bit more, and be tougher.
"And I don’t think ’tougher’ means we have to fight.
"We have to take the body a little bit more, be more aggressive and harder to play against," he said.
The Black & Gold jersey that he wears on a game-by-game basis demands that improvement from the Bruins, especially in the grit department, but skill wise, Bergeron doesn’t think that the B’s are that far out of the playoff picture for Spring 2008.
"There is a lot of talent in this room," said Bergeron. "There are a lot of hard workers on the team. Yah, I think these guys can do it, but I think that we are all going to have to tell ourselves that we need to step up at the beginning of next year."
Easier said than done, but if his teammates follow Bergeron’s example (he played through a number of nagging ailments throughout the season) the B’s should be ok.
"Yah, I played through some stuff, but now that the year is over, I don’t want to make any excuses," said Bergy. "It’s been a year where I’ve learned a lot."
Asked if he was surprised to learn that the Bruins were not a playoff team, Bergy said, "Sure it’s a surprise, and it’s disappointing, too."
The young forward continued to elaborate.
"When I talked to (the press) at the end of last season, I said I didn’t want to go through this twice," he said. "And here we are again this year, so, it’s disappointing and frustrating.
"Hopefully we can learn (from this past season).
"I said that last year and I guess we didn’t learn enough," said Bergeron.
It wasn’t the season that he wanted or imagined, especially looking at the standings, but it wasn’t a disaster for the young Quebeccer, either.
In 77 games, Patrice had 22 goals, 48 assists (a career high) and 70 points (only three off his career high). To boot, Bergeron had career highs in power play goals (14), power play assists (24) and tied his career best in game winning goals (6).
Going forward, there is a chance that the Bruins forward might represent Canada (like he did last season with Sidney Crosby, shown above right) at the World Championships in Moscow, Russia starting on the 27th of April. But for now, nothing is definite.
"I want to talk to Steve Yzerman," said Bergeron of Canada’s General Manager. "I’ll make the decision after that. We’ll see."
Asked where the B’s would be on April 9, 2008 and Bergeron was sure of his answer.
"We’ll be in the first round of the playoffs if everything goes the way we hope," he said, with a big smile.