Since the calendar flipped to January, the Boston Bruins have looked like a different team.
Entering the season, Steen was in Providence, but he has shown as of late why he belongs in the NHL. In five games this season, the 23-year-old has four points. Steen has sparked the offense in his limited action this year when he’s in the lineup.
Steen needs to be apart of the Bruins’ lineup night in and night out
Through 52 minutes of ice time this year, Steen has been aggressive with the puck and attempted 14 shots. He also hasn’t been afraid of contact, as the Swedish native has landed six hits. After failing to record a point in his first NHL stint during the 2020-2021 campaign, he has only gone scoreless in one game with the Bruins this season.
While Steen has been a pleasant surprise, he has built on success in Providence. At the AHL level this season, he had 20 points in 16 games. For Steen, that is a career-high, and his success has translated to the next level. Due to his performance, the Swedish native has started to carve out a role with the Bruins and thrived with the increased pressure.
Although the regular season is far from over, Steen’s play has already been a highlight. His impact has also caught the attention of head coach Bruce Cassidy who had this to say to the media.
"“Eventually you push your way through where you won’t get taken out and then you adjust your roster, right? So that happens to a lot of different teams. [Sunday] happened to be a situation [where] Kuhly goes on COVID [list], and Lazar finished the game Saturday, but was a little banged up [and] he could have played if we really needed him to, but we got a fresh guy that’s playing well in Providence [with] young legs, back-to-back, and he takes advantage of it.”"
When Steen is on the ice, the Bruins have the edge in scoring chances and shots. While the 2016 draftee has a small sample size, he has one of the Bruins best scoring chance-for percentage. The former sixth-round pick ranks among the team’s best in almost every metric.
As the Bruins make their playoff push, Steen will be a player to watch. They will have a few difficult decisions to make as they get healthier, and the Bruins forward is one of the few players who does not require waivers.
Regardless of how the rest of the season unfolds, Steen has been vital to the Bruins’ improved play and three-game winning streak.