An easy choice for the team’s top rookie amidst another lost campaign, Max Sauve returns to the Providence Bruins to build upon those hints of promise he flaunted during the brighter moments of the 2010-11 season. On the heels of a 21-goal, 38-point run, Sauve’s ongoing development can and should hold substantial sway on the P-Bruins’ vow to readopt consistency and ascend the AHL leaderboard.
• Placed second on the team with 21 goals and tied Kirk MacDonald for third with 38 points, despite missing 19 games.
• Tied Zach Hamill for first among all P-Bruins forwards with a plus-six rating.
• Charged up his first professional hat trick in a 6-5 win at Springfield Oct. 9.
• Returned to action Dec. 10 after being sidelined by an injury for eight weeks and charged up 18 goals and 34 points in his remaining 57 appearances.
• Scored his fifth and sixth goals—including his third game-winner, and all at the expense of the Falcons—in a 3-1 home win Dec. 19.
• Had two multi-goal games and two game-winners 10 days apart and each against the Connecticut Whale (Jan. 15 and 25).
• Kindled a month-long hot streak between Feb. 19 and March 19, scoring points in 11 out of 13 games-played for a cumulative 6-8-14 transcript within that span.
• Scored two goals, including his seventh game-winner, and finished the night with a plus-3 rating in a 4-0 win at Abbotsford Feb. 25.
• Landed at least one shot on goal in each of his last 25 appearances.
• Endured a seven-game pointless skid between Dec. 31 and Jan. 14.
• Was on the ice for three opposing goals, including the eventual decider plus a power-play goal and 6-on-4 empty netter as the Charlotte Checkers throttled Providence, 6-2, on Dec. 17.
• Accumulated 14 penalty minutes within three minutes and 20 seconds for tripping, goaltender interference and misconduct during a 5-1 home loss to Bridgeport March 13.
• Recorded no goals and only three assists over nine games between March 13 and April 1.
Sauve’s key to a celestial kind of season is spreading his touch over more of his game log. That is, he ought to be a little less choosey in terms of whom he victimizes (six of his 21 rookie goals were scored on Springfield, five on Connecticut). And he should shoot to tune the mesh more regularly than in just 15 out of every 61 games-played.
If he does that, Sauve will not only pilot a more consistent, formidable Providence strike force in the coming year. He should also receive more priority for the occasional call-up to The Show.