Boston Bruins

Boston Bruins

Boston Bruins

Mar 21, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Bruins left wing Jake DeBrusk (74) reacts with center Patrice Bergeron (37) and left wing Brad Marchand (63) after scoring a goal during the first period against the Ottawa Senators at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

The confident version of Jake DeBrusk is here for the Bruins.

DeBrusk has always tended to score in bunches, and his most recent performance is no different. He came back from his broken leg to score a goal in three straight games, then scored once in 10 games, and has now gone another three games in a row with a goal.

Most recently, DeBrusk netted an impressive first-period goal on Tuesday night against the Ottawa Senators, which went on to be the game-winner in a 2-1 victory at TD Garden. Finishing a dazzling feed from Brad Marchand, DeBrusk stayed patient and deked to his backhand, which gave him the opening to flip the puck past Senators goalie Mads Sogaard. It wasn’t an easy play to make in any situation, but especially on a night that both goaltenders played at a high level.

  • DeBrusk was quick to credit his teammates’ outrageous playmaking of late when he spoke after the game. But he also admitted that his self-confidence took a dip during his recent cold streak, and he’s jump-started it in recent games by simply being aggressive around the net.

    It’s clear when DeBrusk is feeling it in that high-danger area. You saw it on the goal Tuesday night.

    “I think it was just great passes by my linemates, honestly, just trying to get to the net,” DeBrusk said. “There was a little stretch there where I think it was just kind of reality, me coming back from an injury, being too hard on myself, and also at the same time limiting what I do well. I’m just trying to get my feet moving and go to the hard areas. Like I said, there have been some all-world passes of late.”

  • BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS - MARCH 21: Jake DeBrusk #74 of the Boston Bruins scores a goal on a backhand shot against goaltender Mads Sogaard #40 of the Ottawa Senators during the first period at the TD Garden on March 21, 2023 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Brian Fluharty/Getty Images)

    BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – MARCH 21: Jake DeBrusk #74 of the Boston Bruins scores a goal on a backhand shot against goaltender Mads Sogaard #40 of the Ottawa Senators during the first period at the TD Garden on March 21, 2023 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Brian Fluharty/Getty Images)

  • Marchand agreed with DeBrusk on the footwork. The deke was nice. It’s good that he has a nose for the net. But it’s the pure speed that makes the difference for him when it’s going well.

    “When he scores a goal, he really elevates to another level. He’s always been like that. He’s a little bit streaky,” Marchand said. “He gets really hot when he scores, and he’s feeling good about himself, and he is right now. He’s making a lot of good plays, doing a great job at moving his feet. He’s such a fast skater that when he’s moving, he’s got his legs going, he creates a lot.

    “I think that’s really the only thing that kind of holds him back is when he’s skating versus when he’s not. He’s doing a great job at getting his feet moving. He’s going to expose a lot of players in this league when he’s moving his feet.”

  • Of course, the hope is that the Bruins get Tuesday night’s version of DeBrusk in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. There’s plenty of time for a streaky player like DeBrusk to dip then rise back up again, but the B’s are going to need the best edition of DeBrusk in an all-in year. Something approaching the hero-ball (hero-puck?) DeBrusk played in the 2018 first round against the Toronto Maple Leafs, when he scored five goals in seven games, including a clutch game-winner in Game 7.

    Fittingly, that goal also came off a hard, fast rush to the net. Getting the feet moving. Finishing.

    More of that in 2023, please.

  • Click here for complete Boston Bruins coverage at 985TheSportsHub.com.

    Matt Dolloff is a writer and podcaster for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Yell at him on Twitter @mattdolloff and follow him on Instagram @realmattdolloff. Check out all of Matt’s content here.

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