It was a strong debut for Tyler Bertuzzi in a Boston Bruins uniform as he stepped right in for injured wingers Taylor Hall and Nick Foligno.
With Hall seeking more medical opinions on his lower body injury and Foligno expected to be out for the rest of the regular season, the B’s needed Bertuzzi to step right in as he did in the Boston Bruins 4-2 win over the New York Rangers on Saturday afternoon. In fact it was Bertuzzi that jumped right in and assisted on the first B’s goal wheeling behind the New York net and feeding Charlie Coyle in front to get the Boston Bruins a one-goal lead late in the first period.
Bertuzzi finished with an assist and a plus-1 rating along with two shot attempts and a takeaway in 16:31 of ice time and generally seemed to fit in seamlessly with the Black and Gold.
Boston Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery went so far as to say that Bertuzzi, Coyle and Trent Frederic were Boston’s “best offensive line” of the game.
“Just like we had anticipated. He’s a hockey player and he made a lot of plays. He set [David Krejci] up for an open net in the second and it popped or rolled on his stick or else that’s in the back of the net,” said Montgomery. “He’s really smart with his game management too, like he didn’t force plays at all. You put him in knowing that he likes to forecheck and his linemates like to forecheck.”
Bertuzzi certainly has his interesting quirks like the lack of hockey tape on the handle of his stick, but his game attitude feels like a good fit for the B’s dressing room.
Bertuzzi’s weaponry. Truly have never seen no-plug. pic.twitter.com/zyIcwPLIuu
— Matt Porter (@mattyports) March 4, 2023
After struggling with injuries and scoring just four goals for the Detroit Red Wings during an injury-filled season, Bertuzzi seemed energized to be put in a different situation than the perpetually struggling Wings team that he’s known through his entire NHL career.
“Not quite like my first NHL game [as far as nerves], but once that anthem came and it was done and the puck was dropped it was just full go from there…it was good just to kind of get my feet wet and do it, hear the crowd and just kind of celebrate with the guys and be in the mix a little bit.
“I thought we played simple and pretty good. I’ll do whatever. I’m here to just try and win hockey games. Wherever I play, that’s where I play.”
The Boston Bruins will hope it continues as it feels like they simply add another piece to the machine and they just keep on winning after notching their 10th in a row against a hyped Rangers team that didn’t live up to it on Saturday afternoon.