Why Boston Bruins fans shouldn’t panic about Patrice Bergeron’s injury

TORONTO, ON - NOVEMBER 15: John Tavares #91 of the Toronto Maple Leafs battles for the puck against Patrice Bergeron #37 of the Boston Bruins during the first period at the Scotiabank Arena on November 15, 2019 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Mark Blinch/NHLI via Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - NOVEMBER 15: John Tavares #91 of the Toronto Maple Leafs battles for the puck against Patrice Bergeron #37 of the Boston Bruins during the first period at the Scotiabank Arena on November 15, 2019 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Mark Blinch/NHLI via Getty Images) /
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patrice bergeron bruins
TORONTO, ON – NOVEMBER 15: John Tavares #91 of the Toronto Maple Leafs battles for the puck against Patrice Bergeron #37 of the Boston Bruins during the first period at the Scotiabank Arena on November 15, 2019 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Mark Blinch/NHLI via Getty Images) /

Patrice Bergeron missed the last two games with an injury. Here’s why that might not be a bad thing for the Boston Bruins.

Patrice Bergeron was a surprise absence from last Saturday night’s game against the Capitals. He picked up an injury the night before in Toronto and wasn’t fit to go.

Then, although he traveled with his teammates to New Jersey and even participated in the morning skate, Bergeron did not suit up versus the Devils.

After these past two games, Bruins fans cannot help but worry about Bergeron’s health and status moving forward. However, it’s not time to panic.

First off, Bergeron plays such a well-rounded game, and he never takes shifts off. He block shots, wins puck battles, and goes to the dirty areas in front of the net. As a result, he’s bound to take a knock here and there.

In-season injuries are therefore nothing new for Bergeron and the Bruins. In fact, Bergeron played only 65 games last year and 64 the year before.

Bergeron therefore has experience and knows how to deal with injuries. He won’t let anything linger, and he and the team will make sure he’s 100% ready to go when he returns.

Look at last year as an example. Late in the season and during the playoffs, did it at all look like Bergeron missed 17 games in the regular season?

Second, we have to consider how important Bergeron is to the Bruins. Although Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak continue to light the scoring lamp, Bergeron remains Boston’s best and most important forward.

Bergeron dominates at even strength, and he mans the top power play and penalty kill units. He takes important faceoffs in the offensive and defensive zones, and he’s always out there to close out games.

With all that he does on a nightly basis, the Bruins can’t afford to lose Bergeron for any extended period of time. So, is it that bad for Bergeron to miss a few games right now? We’d much rather be without Bergeron now than later in the season.

Plus, with the shortened offseason, it might actually be a good thing for Bergeron to get some extra rest this season. Matt Kalman of WEEI compares this to “load management” that we see in the NBA.

Bergeron does average 18:58 on the ice this season, 30 seconds more than last season. If he keeps this up, he could find himself burnt out later in the season. This won’t be the case, however, if Boston limits Bergeron’s games played.

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The Bruins are a much better team with Bergeron in the lineup. But, to ensure he’s healthy enough to be in the lineup later in the season, the Bruins need to play it safe with Bergeron. That’s why Bruins fans shouldn’t yet worry about his absence from the lineup. It’s all part of the plan.