Time Is Ticking For Rene Bourque In Anaheim

Who exactly is Rene Bourque? Once a 27-goal scorer for the Calgary Flames,  he’s had one relevant NHL moment since the 2011 season, coming in last year’s playoffs for the Canadiens. Besides that, he really hasn’t done a thing to warrant the faith that general managers routinely show him.

Acquired in November for the much maligned Bryan Allen, Bourque was brought on by general manager Bob Murray to shore up Anaheim’s secondary scoring.

In the wake of the trade, Murray told ESPN’s Pierre Lebrun that, “[Bourque is] a very streaky scorer. What I do like about him is his size and his skating. I think, at times, we’re not moving well enough. I don’t know why. We’re just not.”

Murray’s logic at face value was absolutely spot on. Bourque has always been a streaky scorer throughout his career, and he moves relatively well for his 6′ 2”, 217-pound frame.

Yet with two goals in 24 games as a Duck, it’s safe to say that Bourque doesn’t even classify as streaky anymore. He might just not be all that good.

Having size and speed is a positive pairing in a vacuum, but they both go largely irrelevant if they don’t lead to a positive impact on play. Murray assessed that his team wasn’t moving well enough at the time of the trade (whatever that means), and concluded that Bourque was part of the solution.

Does Bourque Make Anaheim Better?

Initially spending good chunks of time on Anaheim’s top two lines, Bourque actually made his teammates worse when it came to shot attempt percentages. Ryan Getzlaf has a 52.4 shot attempt percentage away from Bourque, and a whopping 48.7 percent with him on his line.

That’s not a negligible difference, it’s a clear indication that Getzlaf’s play was hampered by Bourque. Clearly he wasn’t the answer in that role, and with the return of Kyle Palmieri, Boudreau gradually shifted Bourque to the bottom two lines.

One would assume that the former University of Wisconsin Badger, in a more limited role and set of expectations, would contribute more effectively. In some instances, this rings true.

Nate Thompson’s shot attempt percentage jumps up two percent with Bourque. Rickard Rakell’s percentage gets absolutely torpedoed with him on the ice though, dropping 14(!!!) percent. Andrew Cogliano also enjoys a nice jump without Bourque.

The eye test has been equally uninspiring, as he’s largely been invisible on most nights, logging a measly 9:05 of playing time in Anaheim’s latest contest, only to then be a healthy scratch against Carolina.

So if Rene Bourque hinders the play of the majority of his linemates, what exactly does he bring to Bruce Boudreau’s squad? His minutes have been steadily diminishing in the last six games, and his most recent trip to the press box may indicate that Ducks fans may never find out.



4 thoughts on “Time Is Ticking For Rene Bourque In Anaheim”

  1. Unbelievable how bad a GM Murray is . Lets go of Penner BEFORE playoffs. Doesn’t re-sign Matthew Perreault or Daniel Winnik . I understand DSP had a good playoffs and Rakell is emerging , but look at how COGS just simply can’t finish a break away . The PK was better with those two .And why hang on to Beauchemin? He is a turnover machine that often gets caught standing and having pucks go in off him (as well as screening his own goalie .Fowler still making backhand suicide passes rather casually and has NO PHYSICALITY in him at all for a defenseman. SO many defensemen available last summer … And we get Stoner, another pylon that can’t skate or even clear a zone properly .When Murray got the GM award I laughed. I despise the dirty L A kings , but Lombardi puts Murray to shame. His pick ups over the past few trade deadlines have been pathetic- Dvorak, Mathew Lombardi, Robidas . Mike Ribeiro was available and is making just $1M . Think the power play could have used that help ? I can’t believe how out of touch this guy is . His teams have suffered so many injuries from getting run or just flat out cheap-shotted and yet he refuses to get an enforcer .Anthony Peluso was available at just over $665k . As long as Fowler and Beachemin are Ducks, there will be critical mistakes late in big games .

    It sucks that the owner re-signed Murray another five seasons

  2. I was thrilled to get anything for Allen. Allen was simply a redundancy that the team did not need. They also didn’t need the contract that Bourque is dragging around with him. Now he’s under contract for the remainder of the year and next year. The only hope for Murray is that someone else is as dense as he and is willing to take a flier on a similar contract swap. Between Bourque and Heatley, Murray has done some typical Murray things this year. Fortunately Bruce has been playing the better players and even making Stoner take a seat now and again.

  3. Very very very unimpressed with Bourque and I think Brian Allen would have given this team more. The young wingers in Anaheim have outplayed him with limited ice time. Time to move on…

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