It’s true that when people talk about Tyler Seguin, they’ll often discuss fellow top draft pick Taylor Hall too. But in the immediate future, Seguin’s name will also be echoed as people discuss his talented teammate Marc Savard.
Both Boston Bruins centers were the center of discussion yesterday as CSN North East’s Joe Haggerty provided an update on both players. First, let’s take a look at his thoughts on Savard’s “hurt feelings” and short-term future with the B’s.
The market for Savard never fully developed into what the B’s might have hoped for a perennial 85-point scorer with a palatable $4 million salary cap hit, and that isn’t expected to change between now and the Sept. 17 opening of training camps.
The tepid Savard market combined, with the ongoing NHL investigation into the center’s seven-year, contract have pretty much cinched that No. 91 will be with the B’s to start the season despite any hard feelings and rumors to the contrary.
When you consider that “palatable $4 million salary cap hit,” I think it’s a blessing in disguise that the Bruins failed to trade their brilliant passing center. Obviously, his concussion issues are a cause for concern, but 85-point forwards don’t come along very often. Especially at such a cheap price.
Moving on to Seguin, Haggerty points out that the Bruins are being careful not to put too much pressure on the Calder Trophy candidate in the making.
The B’s, however, have also been very careful not to center too much of their marketing campaign around the 18-year-old Seguin, and don’t want the hype machine to get too out of control with their newest puck phenom.
It’s a smart move to temper expectations, and starting Seguin off with true, two-way professionals like Bergeron and Recchi will give the teenager a pair of sterling examples of how to play NHL hockey with class, dignity and honor. It’s probably the perfect situation to drop a talented, impressionable hockey talent like Seguin into as an 18-year-old kid playing against cold-hearted men without much in the way of mercy.
Few top-end draft picks have gotten the opportunity to ease into the NHL with a quality team around them like Seguin could in 2009-10. In fact, it’s rare that such a high-end prospect might not even make his team right away. In some ways, it reminds me of Tim Duncan coming into a near-playoff team in the San Antonio Spurs and immediately acclimating to the NBA game.
(Although it might be hasty to assume that Seguin will be an instant star like Duncan.)
While the Bruins haven’t always been experts at signing wise contracts or managing their salary cap, I like a lot of the moves they’ve been making. If they handle things well with both Savard and Seguin, they could become a dominant team in the Eastern Conference.