Ryan Bourque (Boxford, Mass.) has had a great January. The son of Hockey Hall of Famer and Boston Bruins legend Ray Bourque was a member of Team USA's gold medal-winning squad at the World Junior (Under-20) Championship to kick off 2010, and in five games he's played for the Quebec Remparts of the QMJHL since his return to Patrick Roy's junior club, he has seven points.
Wednesday night, he provided a season-high four assists in Quebec's 10-4 romp over the sad-sack Rimouski Oceanic, who traded B's prospect Jordan Caron to Rouyn-Noranda last month. Bourque, 18, who was the 80th overall selection of the New York Rangers in last June's NHL draft (joining fellow Boxford native Chris Kreider, who went 19th overall, on Broadway) is an undersized forward, but plays a high-energy, two-way game with his excellent speed, agility and hockey sense. In addition to winning gold in Saskatoon, Bourque also was on last spring's Under-18 world champion entry played on home soil.
Many core players from last year's winner formed the nucleus of America's second-ever gold medal Under-20. Originally committed to UNH, Bourque changed his mind last year and went the major junior route instead. In 36 Quebec League games this season, he has 13 goals and 35 points.
Bourque, who was a star forward at Cushing Academy (like older brother Chris) before joining the U.S. National Team Development Program in Ann Arbor, Mich. is moving forward with his development, and given his increased ice time and production since returning from the WJC, expect him to be one of Quebec's more effective players over the season's last half.