Maine Hockey Journal

Bouck changes course for new waters

Bouck finds himself in his usual spot (Courtesy of Southern Maine Digital Imaging)

Bouck finds himself in his usual spot (Courtesy of Southern Maine Digital Imaging)

Portland, ME – The Portland Pirates season has been over for less than 72 hours, but changes have already begun that will have an effect on the 2009-’10 season. It starts with the fact the Pirates will have a new captain next season after Tyler Bouck signed with Ingolstadt ERC of the German Elite League.

Bouck was the lone holdover from the Anaheim Ducks regime and played a vital role as captain for the last two seasons. As one of the elder statesmen on that team, he guided young players like Bobby Ryan and Ryan Carter, who are now an important part of the Anaheim organization.

The Buffalo Sabres were hoping capture some of those same mentoring skills from the 29-year old veteran for their young prospects including rookies Nathan Gerbe and Tim Kennedy.

“I guess it’s however that I’m looked upon as long as I can provide something for the team, I’m willing to do that,” said Bouck just prior to cleaning out his locker for the summer.

It was a tough season for Bouck who was out of lineup for most of January with a concussion. Because of the concussion, he played only 63 games this season for the Pirates, scoring seven goals, 16 assists for 23 points with a plus/minus -12 rating.

That was down on his production from a year ago when he set season highs for goals (11), assists (18) and points (29).

“It was unreal how many injuries we had, and how many head injuries we had was crazy for a while there too,” said Bouck. “It makes it a longer season. It’s harder to find that consistency when you’re having guys in and out all the time.”

The loss of Bouck will mean the Sabres will need to find another veteran as a replacement something Sabres’ GM Darcy Regier said has already begun. Bouck was one of four veterans on the roster this season.

We’re going to try and bulk up a little bit in numbers,” said Regier after the Pirates had been eliminated in Providence. “We’re talking about here after the game already… we’ll take some time and go through each individual player and assess positions.”

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