Many fans don’t remember this, but Jordan Caron once scored a hat trick on the Garden Ice. In fact, prior to this week, most fans knew Jordan Caron as Tyler Seguin’s roommate who didn’t wake Seguin up when he missed a team meeting in Winnipeg. But now Caron has shown why he was a 1st round draft pick and has the potential to fit in perfectly with the Bruins style of play.
Prior to the start of the 2010-2011 season, the Boston Bruins and New York Islanders put together a team of rookies that faced off in two games on September 15 and 16, 2010. In front of an impressive TD Garden crowd of over 10,000 each night, the Bruins beat the Islanders 5-2 and 2-1 (OT). The games were a success almost solely due to the appeal of spotting recent #2 overall draft pick Tyler Seguin in action for the first time. In game 1, however, another impressive prospect drew fan attention by netting a hat trick – Jordan Caron.
Caron, a 25th overall 1st round draft pick by the Bruins in the 2009 entry draft, continued to impress the Bruins organization by making the NHL roster out of training camp in 2010-2011. Although he would play on 23 games with the Bruins that year, he had 3 goals, 4 assists, for 7 points and 6 penalty minutes for Boston. He scored his first career goal against legendary goaltender Martin Brodeur of the New Jersey Devils on October 16, 2010, not long after his fellow rookie Tyler Seguin also netted his first career goal.
The Sayabec, Quebec native, spent his time in Boston living with fellow Quebec-native Patrice Bergeron, who helped Caron learn English and adapt to life in the pros, much like Martin Lapointe did for Bergeron in his own rookie season back in 2003-2004. After a strong start with the Bruins, he was sent down to Providence to continue to develop.
Caron finished the season with Providence of the AHL with a total of 47 games played. He racked up 12 goals, 16 assists, and 28 points along with 16 penalty minutes. During the Bruins Stanley Cup playoff run, Caron was a member of the very important Black Aces squad, who joined the Bruins team in skating the Cup after Game 7 in Vancouver.
Before joining the Bruins, Caron spent four seasons in the QMJHL from 2006-2007 season until the 2009-2010 season, including 1 season after he was drafted by Boston. In 204 total regular sesaon games played in the QMJHL, Caron had 100 goals, 103 assists, for 203 total points and 173 penalty minutes. Caron also represented Team Canada in the 2010 World Junior Championships in which Canada won a silver medal on home soil.
This year, Caron has moved back and forth between the NHL and AHL. He did not show enough progress initially, but in light of recent injuries, he got another prolonged shot at the Bruins roster. Finally, he has begun to show his potential that the Bruins saw when they drafted him – a big, strong power forward who can crash the net and score goals. At 6’2, 202 lbs, he has the size; it’s been a matter of developing his skill and continuing to work hard to maintain the rest.
He saw 17 games in the AHL this season (9 assists, 14 points and 10 PIM), but has no solidified his place in the NHL – if he continues to show what he has in the past two games for the Bruins. Thus far this season, 32 games have yieled 6 goals 4 assists, 10 points, and 6 PIM. 3 of those goals have come in the past two games against the New York Rangers and Toronto Maple Leafs. More importantly, those goals have come at a critical point where the team needed it’s supporting cast to step up.
Not all 1st round draft picks make the NHL – or make a significant impact in the NHL when they do. For many, it’s a struggle to develop and takes more time than the snap of the fingers like it did for high picks like Seguin. Born on November 2, 1990, Caron is just 21 years old – still too young to have reached his full potential. Caron has had his ups and downs, but his ups have the potential to new peaks if he continues to stay confident, work hard, and show the true Bruin inside.