(Photo Credit:  Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

By: Andrew Bluestein | Follow Me On Twitter / X @adbblue

Trent Frederic has continued to have a career season, proving why he was well worth being a first-round selection. He hasn’t accumulated much special team time this season, however, that has changed as of late. 

He recorded his first goal on the man advantage in the team’s 7-3 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning last Saturday night. His offensive production, as of late, has certainly earned him more time on the power play. 

The former University of Wisconsin Badger is only averaging 11 seconds of power play time on ice per game and has just 7:16 of total time. With Janes van Riemsdyk missing the last two games and being day-to-day, Frederic has received more time when the team is up a man. Perhaps a reward for his recent solid play and consistent offensive production. That would make total sense as the 6’3 forward has eight points in his last ten games, including two multi-goal games. 

Frederic has also moved to his natural position at center, playing in the middle on the third line. Aside from his point production, he’s been sound away from the puck and has been a noticeable physical presence. Furthermore, there have been several instances where he’s made plays away from the puck that have helped create offense and generate goals. His face-off winning percentage has been subpar at 41.2%, but that’s something he can work on and improve over time. 

The biggest thing giving Frederic more special team time can help with is preventing overusing guys. Obviously, you want your best players on the ice when you’re either up a man or down a man, but some of those players play in both situations. Putting Frederic on the power play and penalty kill could allow guys like Pavel Zacha and Charlie Coyle to take a breather on nights when the Bruins have to kill a high number of penalties. Both are one and two on the team among forwards in having the most shorthanded time on ice per game, with Coyle first at 2:51 and Zacha second at 1:58. 

Relying too heavily on your top players can wear them down throughout a long season, affecting how they play in the playoffs. Frederic is averaging 13:46 of time on ice per game, which is tenth on the team among forwards. He has also been killing penalties more frequently as of late, which he has done at times this season, but he is only averaging 32 seconds per game. Balancing out the minutes by using Frederic more is a great way to keep guys as fresh as possible, and it also makes the matchup game more complicated for opponents. 

The St. Louis, Missouri native has certainly taken a big jump in the last two seasons and is becoming a complete player. He has also earned the trust of head coach Jim Montgomery with his recent bump up in special teams ice time. That is something that should continue, and it could be very beneficial to the Bruins for the remainder of the season.