Kalman: Krug Benefits From Having Short Memory
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BOSTON (CBS) — Everyone loves Torey Krug’s ability to get his shot on net.
The way he changes the angle when he walks the puck off the wall along the blue line or up toward the circles, and his vicious one-timer are unmatched in terms of potency.
But what might be the biggest factor in Krug’s early-career NHL success isn’t something you can see. He benefits most from having a short memory.
Krug snapped an 11-game goal drought Saturday by scoring twice in the Bruins’ 4-1 win against the Winnipeg Jets at TD Garden. He also assisted on a third goal to run his season totals to 10-13-23 in 42 games.
The matinée easily could’ve gone the other way for Krug, who started the festivities with a neutral-zone giveaway that led to Dustin Byfuglien giving the Jets a 1-0 lead in the first period. However, Krug never lets a miscue get in the way of his attempts to make a positive impact.
“Yeah, it’s frustrating when it seems to be that there’s a tendency that when you’re on the ice and the puck goes in your own net,” he said after the win. “So that’s frustrating. And then it’s all about putting it in the past and forgetting about it and making plays moving forward. And that’s what we did tonight.”
The 22-year-old Krug picked up this season where he left off in last season’s playoffs in terms of points from the blue line. Krug, who finished with six points in 15 games during the Bruins’ run to the Stanley Cup finals, scored eight goals in the Bruins’ first 30 games. Then the drought, during which he contributed just three goals, arrived. He also had some struggles defensively, with a couple of minus-3 performances mixed in.
At 5-foot-9, 180 pounds, Krug has had to overcome a lot of snubs and a lot of mismatches to rise through the college ranks to the American Hockey League and then the NHL. He learned early on that he can’t also compete against history. So he’s become a master at moving on from his errors and continuing to make the plays the way he has to in order to be successful. He’s not going to change a game with a huge hit or a fight. He’s not going to be asked to shadow an opposing sniper. Krug’s value is in his ability to make the opponent have to play defense.
If Krug keeps his memory short and his production high, his career with the Bruins will be unforgettable.
Matt Kalman covers the Bruins for CBSBoston.com and also contributes to NHL.com and several other media outlets. Follow him on Twitter @TheBruinsBlog.