BOSTON — Even before the Bruins drafted Tyler Seguin second overall last June, general manager Peter Chiarelli and people around the Bruins drew the comparison between Seguin and Tampa Bay sniper Steven Stamkos.
Those comparisons have even made their way to the Sunshine State.
“I hear the comparisons, and he’s a great skater, he’s got a great shot, great vision,” said Stamkos, the league’s leading goal-scorer, after his team’s morning skate in preparation to face the Bruins tonight. “It’s nice for me to get compared to him. He’s a great player. It’s obviously a compliment.”
Seguin has started his NHL career similarly to Stamkos, with limited ice time and a limited role. But the Bruins forward has shown flashes of his potential brilliance in putting up 5-4-9 totals in 23 games. He has heard the Stamkos comparisons as well.
“I try to be [like him]. He’s definitely doing really good right now,” said Seguin. “He’s adapted to the league. I think it probably took him half a season his rookie year. And I’ll probably be around there and hopefully keep on going.”
Stamkos confirmed the notion that it took about 41 games to get settled in as an NHLer. He expects that once Seguin finds his stride in around that amount of time, he’ll be able to reach his rookie-year potential.
“[After 41 games or so] that’s when you start feeling comfortable, you start to realize you have that extra second, you’re comfortable with your surroundings, your teammates, your coaching staff,” said Stamkos. “You know what to expect. It took me that long. It took Vinny [Lecavalier] that long, from talking to him. There’s an adjustment period for sure. You’re coming from juniors straight to the NHL. So it’s to be expected and there’s nothing really to worry about. Once you get that confidence in, you start making the plays.”
The next step in Seguin’s growth and Stamkos’ march to 50 goals in 50 games (he has 21 in 25 so far) takes place head to head tonight at TD Garden (7 p.m.).