Corvo: I just need to focus on defense now

WILMINGTON, Mass -- Bruins defenseman Joe Corvo is most likely to be in the lineup for Game 1 against the Capitals filling in for the injured Adam McQuaid (upper body), who was ruled out by head coach Claude Julien on Wednesday.

It has been a nightmare season for Corvo, who had just 25 points in 75 games after being acquired by the Bruins last summer for his offensive and power-play capabilities. Julien showed patience with Corvo for most of the season, but once the Bruins went out and acquired defensemen Greg Zanon and Mike Mottau at the trade deadline, Corvo was a healthy scratch for six games between March 15 and March 29. Injuries to McQuaid and Dennis Seidenberg have given Corvo another shot, and now ironically he believes he must play a stay-at-home game to remain in the lineup.

“I do feel like I’ve shut off any offensive part of my game,” Corvo admitted when asked if he’s done something different after sitting out those six games. “Like trying to jump into plays and stepping up to create offense, I think I’ve shut that down. Now I’m focused on staying back and playing a little more safe. I just have to do whatever keeps me in the lineup. We finished second overall and we have enough scoring, so I feel like I just don’t need to do that anymore in order to help the team. I just need to focus on defense now if I want to stay in and help the team.”

Returning to the lineup has also made Corvo feel a part of the team again, he said, and he is doing his best to stay in there.

“It’s made me feel like I’m a part of it again,” Corvo said. “Obviously you feel more important and like you have a role on the team when you’re playing, so I just need to take that and run with it.”

His teammates’ positive feedback has also boosted his confidence, he said.

“There’s been guys on the team that have said that they noticed me putting in more of a concentrated effort throughout each game, so that’s good,” Corvo said. “So just by listening to those guys, I feel I’m playing better.”

Corvo, an unrestricted free agent July 1, would love to be playing with the same teammates next season, but right now he’s focused on helping them win another Stanley Cup -- and his first.

“That’s for the offseason really,” Corvo said. “At this point in my career I just want to win that trophy. I love it here and these guys have been amazing. I’ve never been in a dressing room where guys are so open, positive or negative -- we get it out there and deal as a team. That’s helped me a lot and I’d love to win with this team.”