|09.13.10 at 1:34 pm ET|
BOLTON — David Krejci took a few minutes to talk about his wrist, the Bruins’ much-anticipated Prague trip, and, of course, the links on Monday at the team’s annual golf tournament at The International in Bolton.
“I can skate, so I can golf,” Krejci said with a grin. The center suffered an ugly injury in the Eastern Conference semifinals when he separated his right wrist but now has every necessary procedure, including getting screws removed, in the rear view mirror.
The 24-year-old said throughout the summer that he would be fine for training camp, and he confirmed as much on Monday.
“It’s really close. Really close,” Krejci said. “We’re talking about days [until] it’s going to be 100 percent. I don’t think it’s 100 percent right now, but it’s really close.”
Krejci participated in captain’s practice last week at Ristuccia Arena in Wilmington. Though he was still getting a feel then, he said Monday that by the time camp officially opens he’ll be able to say he’s totally healed.
“It still [hurts a little]. I can feel it sometimes when I shoot, [but] I can shoot almost 100 percent,” Krejci said. “By the camp, I think I’ll be [better].”
It’s been four weeks by Krejci’s estimation since he started putting the wrist through the usual trials. Though he’s piecing everything together in the days leading up to Friday, he’s seen enough encouraging signs to know he’ll be good to train with his teammates and use the preseason to ready himself for his third year in the league.
“I can stickhandle fine. My motion’s there. I have no problem with that. It’s a little weaker, but I’ve been working on it the last four weeks,” Krejci said. “I’m getting the muscle back, so I should be fine by the [time the] season comes.”
Here are a couple unusual notes from Krejci’s chat:
– He’s excited to walk through metal detectors at the airport with confidence. Because of the screws in his wrist that were removed about a month ago, he constantly set off the machines in his travels.
“They checked me completely,” Krejci said of security. “It wasn’t fun, but it is what it is.”
– Maybe reading too much into a city before travelling there can be a bad thing. Asked if cab drivers in Prague were as difficult to deal with as this would suggest, Krejci said they were fine in Prague, but not necessarily in the neighboring towns. He did note that taxis aren’t as frequently utilized over there and that “you can’t just go in the street and stop one.”
|09.13.10 at 12:50 pm ET|
BOLTON — The Bruins and friends teed off for their golf tournament at The International, meaning practically all of the players were available to chat Monday morning in Bolton. Though David Krejci gave WEEI.com some good tips on dealing with cab drivers in Prague, the most interesting player to speak may have been his winger in Michael Ryder.
“I’m anxious to get started this year. Last year was disappointing, especially the way it ended,” Ryder said. “I think especially regular season too I think will be a lot better. There are things we have to improve on this year and hopefully we can do that.”
It’s no secret that Ryder was among the players who took the brunt of criticism when the Bruins offense stalled for the entire season. As a result, and with him entering the final year of a three-year deal, many wondered whether Ryder and his $4 million cap hit would be back this season.
“It happens everywhere you go,” Ryder, who seemed genuinely unfazed by the offseason speculation said. “After the season there’s always going to people talking and saying things [regarding] who should go where, and whatever, but you’ve got to forget about it and concentrate on starting off the season.”
Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli rained on the parade of angry fans who wanted Ryder gone when he said early in the offseason that the team would not be buying the final year of Ryder’s deal out. He pointed to an off-year for the winger, who said he “expected to be back” with the team. Ryder admits that coming off a 27-goal season in 2008-09, his 18-goal showing last season was a letdown and he accepts whatever negative chatter comes with it.
“The whole team didn’t score goals last year. We had a hard time putting the puck in the net in the regular season,” Ryder said. “When you’re looked at to score goals and the team’s not scoring, you’re one of the guys that’s under the gun. I kind of accept that and I’ve just got to try to find ways to make that happen.”
Ryder remains a possible victim of the salary cap. The team will be approximately $3.5 million over the $59.4 million mark once Marco Sturm returns from long-term injury status. Asked if he felt he considers each practice and game from here on out an “audition,” Ryder expressed confidence in his role with the Bruins.
“I know I’m still part of this team,” he said. “I’ve just got to go out and prove that I belong here.”
|09.12.10 at 2:46 pm ET|
WILMINGTON — Bruins top prospect Tyler Seguin took part in his first official practice of this year’s training camp on Sunday. After voluntarily skating with Bob Essensa‘s goalie camp last week, he skated alongside Jamie Arniel and Jared Knight as Peter Chiarelli, Cam Neely, and Claude Julien looked on.
“I’m very excited,” Seguin, the second overall pick in June’s NHL draft, said. “I just know that everything is finally here and this is where all the big impression are made. It’s nice to be out there to be able to show my stuff.”
The session was closed to the public, but Seguin has gotten plenty of attention in Boston since his selection. In addition to throwing out the first pitch at a Red Sox game on his first day in Boston, he saw the Ristuccia Arena stands packed for this summer’s rookie development camp. Seguin, who racked up 106 points in 63 OHL games last year, doesn’t mind the attention.
“I’m just going out there, having fun with everything, and working my hardest,” Seguin said. “Whatever comes with it is just a bonus.”
“Yeah I have. I’m pretty comfortable and confident in either position. I’ve played both over my OHL career, so coming in here, any position — whether it’s goalie — those two positions I’ll play to make the team.”
Seguin did catch himself after the last comment, clarifying that he is “brutal” in net.
Here are a few notes from what Seguin’s session with reporters:
– He’ll play in both rookie games at the Garden this week against Islanders rookies. Last week fellow center prospect Joe Colborne, when asked, said that he had Seguin to thank for the games being played on such a big stage.
“He’s all over my case lately,” Seguin said when told of the discussion with Colborne.
– Seguin hasn’t figured out where he’ll live if he makes the team. Could see a situation similar to the Patrice Bergeron/Martin Lapointe situation of a few years back.
“He’s like, ‘Yeah, I’ve been playing for the last three weeks online trying to get good for the tournament.’ I completely 100 percent forgot about the thing and the day we came in I was like, ‘I didn’t even know we had to play,'” Seguin said. “‘I thought we were just taking some pictures and interviews.'”
|09.12.10 at 2:24 pm ET|
WILMINGTON — Any concerns over how happy Marc Savard is after hearing his name in trade rumors all season were met with some positive news Sunday, where Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli said the center was in town last week. Though he won’t be back in Boston for Monday’s golf tournament, Savard did hit the links recently by playing a round with Chiarelli himself.
“He was in good spirits and [is in a] good frame of mind right now,” Chiarelli said of their day together.
Savard had said in August that he was “hurt” by the idea of the team considering him in a potential trade. He signed a seven-year, $28.5 million extension in December.
|09.12.10 at 12:36 pm ET|
WILMINGTON — With the likes of Peter Chiarelli, Cam Neely, and Claude Julien looking on from the stands, the Bruins began rookie camp Sunday morning. After skating with Bob Essensa‘s goalie camp last week, second overall pick Tyler Seguin took to the ice wearing his No. 19 (he wore 57 at rookie development camp this summer and many of the other prospects in attendance were sporting high numbers).
Seguin, believed to be able to help the Bruins as a center or wing this season, skated between Jamie Arniel and 32nd overall pick Jared Knight. Joe Colborne centered Lane MacDermid and Jordan Caron. The other two lines featured some guys rotating in. One consisted of Joe Pleckaitis, Tyler Randell, Max Sauve, and Ryan Spooner, with the Craig Cunningham, Yannick Riendeau, Antoine Roussel, and Walker Wintoneak skating on the other.
Defensemen Yury Alexandrov, Matt Bartkowski, Ryan Button, Matt Delahey, Ryan Donald, Alain Goulet, and Steve Kampfer skated as well. Goaltenders Adam Courchaine, Matt Dalton, and Michael Hutchinson were also in the house.
The first of two session is in the books. We’ll have more once the second is over with and the players have spoken.
|09.09.10 at 5:32 pm ET|
According to Larry Brooks of the New York Post, the NHLPA executive board is in the process of voting former MLB head Donald Fehr in as its executive director. A tweet from Brooks says that player reps have until 5 p.m. on Saturday to submit their votes.
Fehr had reportedly been chosen for the position last month according to Liz Mullen of the Sports Business Journal, but earlier this week Bruins defenseman and player representative Mark Stuart said that a vote to put Fehr in charge had yet to take place.
Fehr, 62, served the NHLPA as an advisor last year after leaving the MLBPA following 13 years as its director. He made his name as baseball’s union head by getting players $280 million due to owners’ collusion and for leading the players association during the baseball strike of 1994-95.
|09.09.10 at 12:58 pm ET|
WILMINGTON — With age and experience, hockey players often say that the offseasons shorten up. The time devoted to family and training flies by as training camp fast approaches. Tell that to 20-year-old prospect Joe Colborne.
“You have no idea. It’s finally here,” Colborne said after taking the ice with the veterans for the third day of captain’s practice at Ristuccia Arena. “Everyone kept telling me how short the summer was. I was like, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me.’ I’ve been waiting — it feels like this last month has taken a year.”
This will be Colborne’s first camp with the big boys. After starting the last two seasons playing for the University of Denver and finishing the 2009-10 campaign with six games in Providence, the center is preparing for his first foray in making an NHL squad.
Going the college-to-AHL-to-NHL-hopeful route has been beneficial for Colborne. The 16th overall pick in the 2008 draft, Colborne has the talent and size that make many believe he has a productive professional career ahead of him. It’s at each stop, however, that Colborne has been able to develop the most important tool — vision and timely decision-making.
“The biggest difference that I’ve noticed is that everyone knows how to play the game at a higher level and you think the game at a higher level,” Colborne said. “When you get to college and you get to the pros, everyone’s a good player and everyone has good skills, but it’s the guys who can think the game and think the game about a step faster than everyone else. You have to be thinking where the puck’s going to be a lot sooner than, say in college, where you’d have an extra second with the puck or so. I’ve noticed that the D-men close the gap better, forwards are on the forecheck quicker, and it’s just making the decisions a little bit quicker.”
In 39 games for the Pioneers in his sophomore season, Colborne had 41 points in 39 games. Over his short stint with the Baby B’s to end the season, he had two assists. Points aside, nothing was more valuable than getting to once again learn to adjust, just as he had when he first arrived in Denver in 2008.
“Playing in the AHL at the end of the year was a big jump,” Colborne said. “I felt like as the games went on, I felt better and better. This summer’s been huge for me, just working on my quickness. I’m looking forward to camp to see how I compare up against some of the best players in the world.”
The odds are that Colborne’s season will begin in Providence, but after an offseason in which he said he took “two or three days off,” his future is bright. He’ll be on display at the Garden for rookie games on September 15 and 16. He jokingly thanked Tyler Seguin for the opportunity to play at the Garden.
“I’m sure if he wasn’t here, we’d probably be playing in some rink in the middle of nowhere,” he said with a laugh.