Now, Claude Julien  can simply get back to coaching his team and getting them ready for a regular season Saturday night game in October.
He – and every Bruins player – admitted following Thursday night’s 2-1 loss to the Flyers that the season-opener was anything but regular or ordinary.
Now, with Steven Stamkos and the Lightning coming to town for a battle Saturday at TD Garden, it’s time to treat the game like 1-of-82.
“We’re basically all looking forward to it,” Julien said. “As you know, if you go to a party and you stay until four or for two, three days, after a while, you get tired of it, right? The bottles of champagne are empty, so it’s time to go home. I think that’s how we feel right now. We’ve had a great time with it this summer, we’ve had some great experiences, but right now, we basically would like to re-do this, and we know there’s a lot of work and a lot of things that have to come into play before that happens. We need to turn the page.”
Even the stoic Julien was caught up in the emotions of Thursday.
“Well, I was doing my best to keep my mind at doing my job and the game,” the coach said. “It was emotional, I think, to say the least, and when you see the highlights and when you see your players going around the ice with the Cup, I felt proud for them. Emotionally, it was tough for me ‘ I kind of walked away for a while and came back and, you know, it just goes to show you the emotions that go into those kinds of things. Even seeing Mark Recchi  and [Shane Hnidy] that were here ‘ you know, guys that really played big parts in different ways in helping us succeed ‘ to see them with the group, and it was their last opportunity to be with the team, on the ice with them, those kind of things kind of hit home.”
The Bruins actually had jump Thursday for the first 10 minutes, capped off by Brad Marchand ‘s power play goal. But then the natural fatigue of the ceremony and the last six months, for that matter, caught up to them.
“We wanted to move forward right after the ceremony, and I thought we did,” Julien said. “I guess the 10 minutes went up ‘ or, was up ‘ and then we just kind of, like I said, we just seemed to be out of sync. Our players at times, our Ds were going up the ice, our forwards were coming back, and vice versa. We didn’t seem in sync. We didn’t seem to go up the ice as a unit, and I think there’s a lot of things in our game tonight that just wasn’t characteristic of our team. I think the guys realize it. I think we understand we got to be a lot better at that next game. It’s game 1 of 82. As I often say, we’ll learn from this, but we need to get better, and we understand, and we will get better.”