DeBrusk Puts Struggles in the Past
By Marisa Ingemi
With seven goals in his past nine games, Jake DeBrusk is a bit surprised at how much his scoring has snowballed.
That’s not to say he didn’t partially see it coming. While the 22-year-old was in the midst of a 13-game run without a goal, he continued to reiterate he just needed one to go his way.
He didn’t know how right he was.
“It’s interesting because I think it’s confidence, weirdly,” he said. “I never believed I was never going to score again, but it was just actually scoring. I knew I needed one to go in and everything would fall into place. I didn’t think I would get that hot, but I knew my game would come back.”
DeBrusk finally snapped the curse against the Blackhawks, the B’s first game without David Pastrnak. From there, he netted a goal in the next four contests.
He brought that offensive prowess back home with tallies in two straight against the Sharks and Lightning. The confidence surge in his own game has helped the B’s secondary scoring when they need it most, but the second-year winger also is focused on how to avoid another drought.
“I have to find different ways to make sure it’s not just a goal that resets everything,” DeBrusk said. “That’s what kind of builds for me, the puck going in the net or when I’m part of the offense.”
DeBrusk knows his game, which makes the droughts even more frustrating. His longest goal rut of the season before his 13-gamer was six, and last season he was held off the scoreboard for 11 straight.
It might be too early in his career to label him as a streaky player, but evidence certainly exists. DeBrusk knows that once he gets going, it takes a lot to send him spiraling back into the abyss of being held scoreless.
“I knew as soon as I got a bounce, I was going to come in pretty hot,” he said. “I didn’t know if I was going to go on a streak or not, but I knew everything was going to be relaxed and back to normal.”
For most of this season, the sophomore slump label was in play for DeBrusk. Instead, he’s surged to 21 goals, cruising past his rookie total of 16.
There’s a lot of ways the young winger can improve. His assists (11) are down from his 27 last season, but ultimately he’s on the roster to score, and he has when the Bruins needed him the most.
Streaky or not, he couldn’t have picked a better time to find his game, as predicted.
“It let me breathe for a bit, and the 20-goal mark is nice, but there’s still 18 games left to win.” DeBrusk said. “That’s what I’m focused on right now.”