Seguin/By S. Bradley

The use and performance of Bruins rookie Tyler Seguin has been much debated on this blog over the course of the 2010-11 season.

As last June’s No. 2 overall pick gets set to skate in the Bruins’ regular season finale, and possibly his last game of his initial pro season (depending on how things unfold in the postseason), I think we can all agree that he showed improvement but for the most part wasn’t ready to contribute at the NHL level in all areas of the game.

Whether he would’ve been better served to play one more year of junior hockey can be debated. Nonetheless, the path the Bruins chose for Seguin can’t be changed. In today’s Boston Herald, Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli told Stephen Harris about Seguin’s season:

“Better stats would have been better. I came in thinking he’d get better stats — not much better, but better.”

Seguin loyalists will reflexively read that quote and come up with a laundry list of reasons Seguin wasn’t able to put up better numbers this year. Some are warranted, but as Chiarelli also pointed out to the Herald:

“In fairness to Tyler, he didn’t get the significant ice time. Of course, a lot of that is based on merit; there’s a chicken-and-egg thing. But he didn’t get it. He’s comfortable with that and we’re comfortable with that.”

As long as everyone is comfortable with the somewhat incomplete rookie season Seguin endured, then it was worth it for him to stick around Boston as a 19-year-old and learn the ways of a pro before he’s thrust into a greaert on-ice role. It sounds like Chiarelli is content with Seguin’s signs improvement and the rookie has mostly said all the right things about his lack of opportunity.

There’s no telling how the playoffs will go and whether Seguin will get a chance to be a part of them. As long as he learns from all the new experiences he lived through this season, the 2010-11 wasn’t a waste for Seguin or the Bruins’ development of him.