The week started out pretty shitty for Danton Heinen. After being one of the Bruins best players on a disappointing 3 game road trip he was sent down to Providence. It has always been a numbers thing with Heinen. Even in the preseason he out played Frank Vatrano, but Vatrano needs to clear waivers to be sent to Providence and that is not going to happen.
We wrote in this spot last week that we hoped, and felt, Heinen would have a good attitude about the demotion. Well, I guess the answer was he had a good one. After recording 3 assists on the B’s three game roadie Heinen put up a whopping 7 points in 3 games this past weekend. Two weeks ago it was Kenny Agostino putting up video game numbers. This week it was Heinens’ turn.
Of the 7 points Heinen had 1 goal and 6 assists. He had 4 points (1 goal, 3 assists) on Friday night against Springfield. That lone goal came on the penalty kill. He then followed up the big game on Friday with an assist on Saturday (OT win over Toronto) and 2 assists in a win against Laval (new Canadiens AHL affiliate). Heinen now has 8 points in 4 AHL games this season.
Heinen has started where he left off last season by having a monster AHL PLAYOFF run where he led the P-Bruins in points with 18 points (9 goals and 9 assists) in 17 playoff games.
There is no doubt that Heinen is going to be a full time Bruin at some point this season. He just has to be patient and flexible, and keep a travel bag packed and ready like a pregnant woman approaching her due date. Hopefully he has EasyPass set up as well so he can blast through the tolls between Boston and Providence.
During my recent travels I made a point to go see the North Dakota-Minnesota game at the Ralph in Grand Forks, ND on Friday night. Bruins prospect Ryan Lindgren is a defenseman for the Minnesota Golden Gophers and a player I’ve been tracking the progression of for awhile now. The Bruins selected Lindgren in the second round, 49th overall, in last years 2016 draft.
Lindgren, who is a sophomore, is more of a stay at home defenseman. He does not get any power play time but he is out on the penalty kill and for most of the kill at that. The college game is so structured, less flashy than the CHL at times, that it is sometime hard to get a read on a player. That can be doubly true for defenseman.
Lindgren is not the biggest kid out there. He is listed at 6’0″ so he might be a little undersized at the NHL level. But he is a bull dog out there. He is tough on opposing players in front of his own goal and he is not afraid to lay down to block shots. I bet he had at least five legit blocked shots in Friday nights game.
Overall I thought he was pretty good. It is still early in the season, but I could see him sticking around Minnesota for one more season after this one. He was beat wide at one point when he loaded up on a the hip check along the boards but also a similar situation he took advantage of even when he took a bad angle to pursue the forward from North Dakota. He also drew a holding penalty while in a foot race to the puck in the corner in the first period. It’s all about learning on the fly and development at this point for Lindgren.
He did make one fantastic play at the end of the game with North Dakota’s goalie pulled and his Gophers up by a goal. He was covering the front of the net, intercepted a pass, and with good quick judgment was able to chip it off the glass to get it out of the zone. Lindgren played a lot in those key moments and you can tell he isn’t all that fun to play against with his style of play.
Bruins fans will most likely be able to get a look at him on the NHL network in December when the World Junior Championships start.
- The University of Maine goalie Jeremy Swayman earned his first NCAA career win on Saturday against Miami (Ohio). Swayman came off the bench in Friday nights’ blowout then he got the start on Saturday. He gave up 3 goals on 30 shots and it’s starting to look like Swayman might start getting the majority of starts.
- Staying in the NCAA, Trent Frederic and the Wisconsin Badgers played a weekend series on the road against Northern Michigan. Frederic scored 2 goals in Friday night’s loss and then recorded an assist in Saturday’s win. Frederic now has 8 points (4 goals and 4 assists) in 7 games.
- Trent Frederic’s teammate Cameron Hughes recorded a goal and 2 assists in Saturday’s win. Hughes now has 5 points (2 goals and 3 assists) in 7 games.
- It was only an exhibition game but Ryan Donato recorded a hat trick against the USA National Development Team. Harvard gets it going for real on Sunday when they host fellow Ivy League team Dartmouth.
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