Since the calendar flipped to January, the Boston Bruins have been a different team. That has partly been due to changes in the lineup that sparked a struggling offense. One player who has been in vintage form during that span is David Pastrnak.
While his slow start wasn’t expected to last all season, he has been a scoring machine the last few weeks.
In 15 games this month, the former first-round pick has 12 goals and seven assists. Due to the right-wingers’ recent play, he is second on the team in points has already matched his goal total from the 2020-2021 campaign. While Pastrnak has regained his scoring touch, the Bruins second line has been a difficult matchup for opponents and played their best hockey of the season.
Additionally, Pastrnak has come through in the clutch this month with three game-winning goals. As Boston has dealt with injuries the 2014 draftee has been a constant on the score sheet. With the Bruins in need of a boost offensively, he is stepping up regardless of the situation and recorded his first hat trick of the season on Jan. 14 against Philadelphia.
Furthermore, Pastrnak has thrived on the power play. The Czech native has seven points on the man advantage this month after entering January with six. As he has been more aggressive with the puck, Pastrnak is creating scoring chances every time he steps on the ice. That has resulted in six multi-point games so far in 2022.
While the season is far from over, Pastrnak is seemingly just getting started. During the 2021-2022 campaign, the former 25th overall pick is averaging a career-high 19:07 of ice time per game. With the increased usage, he has carried the Bruins offense with points at a premium. Over the last few weeks, Pastrnak has made his slow start a distant memory.
As the Bruins look to secure a playoff spot, they will need Pastrnak at his best. His recent play has sparked the secondary scoring, even though Boston is expected to be a busy team at the trade deadline.
Regardless of what moves the Bruins make, Pastrnak has provided a reminder of why he is one of the most talented forwards in hockey.