Playoff Breakouts & Breakdowns through Round 2

Jared Wickerham

With two rounds of the playoffs in the books, let's take a look at who has been stepping up and laying down during the post-season

Breakouts

Torey Krug - This is purely a round 2 breakout only as, hell, he didn't even appear in round 1 but was the B's offensive star against the Rangers with 4+1=5 & 16 shots in five games while averaging just 15:48/gm of ice-time. He would seem to have some nice future fantasy potential but his situation is a little murky depending on what the Bruins decide to do with UFA Andrew Ference this summer.

Bryan Bickell - He has seen some time in the playoffs on the top line with Toews & Hossa but for the most part he's been in his regular L3 role with Shaw & Stalberg averaging his usual 12 mpg of ice-time. I've had my eye on him as a sleeper pick for next year after a season where he showed 50 point & 200 hit potential (with more ice-time). But with five goals already in the playoffs, he's really blowing his cover and may begin to be over-hyped. He may also be pricing himself out of Chicago as he'll be a UFA this summer and the Hawks may not be able to afford him given their cap situation.

Derick Brassard - All the talk about the Rangers during the playoffs was about how bad Brad Richards was and that seemed to overshadow the performance of Brassy. He stepped into the #1C role and led the team with 2+10=12 in 12 games while averaging 18:49/gm of ice-time. He was quoted as saying that he lost his passion while with the CBJs and the trade provided a real boost... it showed as he had 7+16=23 in 25 regular season & playoff games for the Rangers.

Damien Brunner - He started nicely during his rookie season but then seemed to hit the wall with just two goals in his last 25 regular season games. He kicked it into another gear in the playoffs though by leading the Wings in goals with 5+4=9 in 14 games. He's a UFA this summer but I'd expect the Wings to re-up him and he should be a fixture in the top 6 next year now that he's settled in.

Jean-Gabriel Pageau - I'm not sure he really broke out during the playoffs but he certainly elevated his value with a hat-trick vs Montreal and 4+2=6 & 21 shots in 10 playoff games. He only appeared in nine regular season games for the Sens, so I don't think he's even a lock to make the team out of training camp next season, it may come down to whether Alfredsson decides to return.

Here's a few honourable mentions that showed us something during the 1st round only:

James Reimer - .923 sv% in the 1st round while facing 35+ shots in six of seven games. May have done enough to prove to the Leafs brass that they don't need an upgrade in net.

Jake Gardiner - Was a healthy scratch to start the playoffs but finished with 1+4=5 in six games while logging 23 mpg of ice-time after he gained the coaching staff's confidence.

Nick Bonino - Had 3+1=4, with two GWG, while playing 16:37/gm on L2 with Selanne. I like him as a sleeper pick for next season.

Emerson Etem - All of his damage (3+2=5) came at evens during the final five games of the Ducks-Wings series.

Breakdowns

Jaromir Jagr - Do we give him a pass cause he's an old man? Just 4A during the playoffs and no points in the Rangers series despite averaging 17:15/gm so far.

Brandon Saad - Finished the regular season so well with 24 points in his last 28 games but has been invisible during the post-season with just 2A in 12 games.

Craig Anderson - He came apart against the Penguins with a 4.33 gaa & .884 sv% during the series and was downright awful in four of the five games. This takes a little of the shine of his sterling regular season numbers.

Torts - I'd call it a breakdown when the coach can only get a combined two goals out of Brad Richards & Rick Nash over 12 playoff games.

Brenden Morrow - Has 2+2=4 & eight shots in 10 games and played just 12:48/gm in the series against Ottawa.

Tyler Seguin - This is more unlucky as he has just one goal in 12 playoff games despite 45 shots. Of note though is that he did see his ice-time drop significantly, getting just 12:33/gm vs the Rangers.

Mental breakdown for anyone who was hoping for some offensive hockey involving the LA Kings... the Kings and their opponents have averaged just 3.54 goals/gm combined(!) so far with an amazing 10 of 13 games featuring three goals or less. I'm having a hard time watching their games any more.

Here's a few honourable mentions during the 1st round only:

Marc-Andre Fleury - Had a shutout in game #1 of the playoffs but gave up 14 goals in the next three games and hasn't seen the net since.

Carey Price - Looked kinda out of it in the 1st round and left with an injury in game four, finishing with a .894 sv%.

Zach Parise & Ryan Suter - For a combined $24 million of salary this year, the Wild received one goal, no assists and a minus-12 from these two... ouch.

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