“It was frustrating but as my game’s been going, I feel like I deserved to sit out,” Bickell said. “(Coach Joel Quenneville) wants to get me angry and mad on the ice and bring the physical game.”
Indeed, it’s been an unhappy new year for Bickell, who only has one point and a -6 rating in 11 January games. The season has been rough overall, too, as he’s struggled to score when he hasn’t been sidelined with knee problems.
The 27-year-old entered the season with high expectations thanks to his four-year, $16 million extension and a breakout postseason run, yet he hasn’t gotten on track in 2013-14. Maybe some more time on the sidelines will help him regain that form.