Archive for July, 2012

Report: NHL teams interested in P.J. Axelsson

Tuesday, July 17th, 2012

According to Finnish sportswriter Matias Strozyk last week (and a myriad of other reports since), old friend P.J. Axelsson has a couple of NHL teams interested in his services. Axelsson, who is currently playing for Frölunda HC of the Elitserien league in Sweden, played 11 seasons in the NHL, all with the Bruins.

Axelsson has one year remaining on his contract with Frölunda, but Strozyk tweeted last week that two NHL teams are interested in the 37-year-old. Former Bruin and current TSN analyst Aaron Ward tweeted Axelsson’s deal does not have an out clause that would allow him return to the NHL before the end of the deal.

The Bruins selected Axelsson in the seventh round (177th overall) of the 1995 draft. In 797 NHL games, the Swedish forward had 103 goals and 184 assists for 287 points and 276 penalty minutes.

Bruins sign Garnet Exelby, Lane MacDermid to one-year deals

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

The Bruins announced a couple of minor signings Wednesday, inking defenseman Garnet Exelby and forward Lane MacDermid to one-year, two-way deals.

Both players spent last season in the AHL. Exelby, 30, put up seven goals and 14 assists for 21 points and 177 penalty minutes in 75 games for Grand Rapids, the Red Wings’ AHL affiliate. He’s played 408 NHL games between the Thrashers and Maple Leafs.

MacDermid played five games for the B’s last season and spent the rest of the season in Providence. He had four goals and 12 assists with 121 penalty minutes in 69 AHL contests.

Lowell Spinners to host speed dating promotion with Tyler Seguin

Tuesday, July 10th, 2012

The Lowell Spinners announced on Tuesday that they will host a speed dating promotion featuring Bruins right wing Tyler Seguin on Aug. 15.

Here is the press release:

LOWELL, MASS. – The Lowell Spinners, Class-A Affiliate of the Boston Red Sox, will once again unroll the black and gold carpet and welcome Boston Bruins star and Stanley Cup Champion Tyler Seguin to LeLacheur Park for a special “Speed Dating” promotion during the Spinners August 15 game against the Aberdeen Ironbirds.

Fans will have the opportunity throughout the evening to win a chance to spend time with the hockey superstar during the game. Each winner and their family will have the opportunity to spend five minutes with Seguin in a private suite, giving them the chance to ask the Stanley Cup Champion and NHL All Star questions, take photos, enjoy the game and who knows even score a phone number.

“When we asked the question “Who would be the one person in the Boston area that a Speed Dating Event Planner would want more than anyone?” The answer to us was Tyler Seguin,” said Spinners Vice President of Corporate Communications Jon Goode. “He is one of Boston’s most sought after Bachelors.”

Winners will be picked throughout the evening, through the Spinners Game Day program, Social Media sites, online auction and gameday contests.

“We want to offer a unique experience to our fans,” said Goode. “We are in the business of making memories and this is certain to be a memory that will last a lifetime.”

Seguin joins a long line of Bruins teammates to visit LeLacheur Park, as the Spinners play host to the annual Milan Lucic “Rock & Jock” Softball Classic each summer, during which many of Milan’s Bruins teammates participate.

Tickets to the game itself, in which the Spinners host the Aberdeen IronBirds, are available now at www.LowellSpinners.com or by phone at (978) 459-1702. Our “Speed Dating” contestants will be selected at the before and at the game itself.

Bruins sign former Maple Leafs center Christian Hanson

Monday, July 9th, 2012

The Bruins announced Monday that they have signed former Maple Leafs center Christian Hanson to a one-year, two-way deal. Hanson, 26, last played in the NHL in the 2010-11 season and spent last season playing for the Hershey Bears, the Capitals’ AHL affiliate.

Hanson will make $600,000 in the NHL or $105,000 in the AHL next season for the B’s. The 6-foot-4, 228-pounder had 10 goals and 11 assists for 21 points and 42 penalty minutes in 52 games for the Bears last season.

The Notre Dame product has played 42 career NHL games, all of which were with the Maple Leafs, and has three goals and nine assists for 12 points and 22 penalty minutes at the NHL level.

Hanson’s father is Dave Hanson, a former player who totaled 33 NHL games between the Red Wings and North Stars between 1978-1980, but is better known for playing Jack Hanson in the film “Slap Shot.”

Ryan Spooner shines as Bruins prospects wrap up development camp

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

WILMINGTON — The Bruins’ sixth annual development camp is in the books, as the B’s prospects finished the six-day camp with a power skating session and a scrimmage Monday at Ristuccia Arena.

Forward Ryan Spooner was the star of the day, scoring two goals for the white team in the black and white scrimmage. Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli called Spooner “one of the usual suspects” when it comes to players pushing for an NHL job this season along with fellow 2010 second-round pick Jared Knight and defenseman Dougie Hamilton. Both Knight and Spooner will head to the AHL if they don’t make the team out of camp, as they finished their junior careers last season in the OHL.

More to come from camp.

Zane Gothberg ready for school

Sunday, July 1st, 2012

WILMINGTON – Zane Gothberg came into his first development camp a quirky 17-year-old who had recently finished high school. Two years later, he’s the most seasoned veteran of the camp among six goaltending prospects.

In town for his third camp, Gothberg has more experience on the Ristuccia ice than the likes of first-round pick Malcolm Subban or the older Parker Milner. When he first arrived in 2010 (his draft year — Gothberg was a sixth-round choice of the B’s), he was ready to embark on his USHL career. After two successful seasons with the Fargo Force, he’ll head to the University of North Dakota in the fall.

Gothberg had to be patient after committing to North Dakota. Both Brad Eidsness and Aaron Dell were upperclassmen last season, so the coaches decided it would be best for Gothberg to spend another season in the USHL.

With Eidsness graduated, Gothberg, who had a 2.22 goals-against average and .921 last season for Fargo, will finally begin his college career with the hope of competing with Dell for playing time in the WCHA.

“There’s a good opportunity presenting itself,” Gothberg said. “Going in, I’ll be competing for the starting job. Competition only brings out the best in you, so I’m looking forward to it and it will be a good year. I’m really ready to step up to the next level and see what I can do there too.”

It’s a good thing Gothberg likes the competition, because with as many netminders in town for development camp as there are, he has to do even more to get the attention of coaches and the fans packing the stands. Providence coach Bruce Cassidy said as much Sunday, pointing out that the number of goalies and the fact that not all the drills involve shooting means that the netminders aren’t being worked quite as hard this summer.

“It’s different in the sense that there’s a lot more goalies and you don’t see as many shots,” Gothberg said. “The shots that you do see, your senses are kind of heightened because you’re not so fatigued from the previous day or two. Camp’s been good, seeing shots and really focusing on tracking shots and going from there.”

Two years ago, Gothberg made quite the first impression on the Boston media by explaining that he liked to “keep the room spunky and stuff” and added that he could occasionally be found getting pumped up before games by listening to Miley Cyrus. Though his musical taste has changed a bit — he’s more of a Jason Aldean guy these days — his eccentric personality hasn’t. That’s why it isn’t a surprise that he’s getting along with Subban, whose joking nature has helped him make a similar impression on the media.

“He’s a great kid, a great guy,” Gothberg said of Subban . “He likes to joke around here and there, and that’s just like [the rest of the Bruins’ goalies], and I respect that. He’s a good goaltender. Everyone here is too. … We definitely have a good time.”

Tough guy Anthony Camara adds offense and intrigue

Sunday, July 1st, 2012

WILMINGTON — Entering last summer’s development camp, Bruins’ 2011 third-round pick Anthony Camara had fought fellow B’s prospect Tyler Randell during the OHL season, making for some interesting stories. This year, the tough youngster says he has no such stories with current B’s prospects, but he has hit Malcolm Subban where it hurts — even if Subban won’t admit it.

“I scored a couple of times on Subban this year,” the reserved Camara said. “I don’t think there are too many guys in here who I fought this year, but I definitely got Subban for a couple of goals.”

Subban begs to differ.

“I’ve seen him make a few nice passes, but I don’t know about him scoring on me,” last week’s first-round pick said with a smirk. “I know he does everything else pretty well though.”

Turns out Subban — a hit with the media and teammates — is already lying to them one week into his Bruins career. Camara, who didn’t do much scoring at all prior to being drafted by the B’s, has indeed scored a rather nifty goal on the Belleville Bulls netminder, albeit off a broken play. Still, a goal’s a goal, and Camara put quite a few in this past season.

Based on where he was drafted and what he might be becoming, there are few Bruins prospects more intriguing than Camara. The B’s turned heads last June when they drafted Camara, a fighter first and foremost, in the third round. The 6-foot-1 left wing had only scored eight goals in the OHL in his draft year, and just six in the previous season, but Boston saw enough in Camara to take him 81st overall.

The Toronto native used last summer’s development camp to show that he was more than just a grinder, but this past season saw Camara really add the element of offense to his game. He scored seven goals in 35 games for Saginaw before being traded to the Barrie Colts. There, he added nine more goals in 31 games with the help of a Hall-of-Famer.

“I just felt like I had more opportunity when I got traded,” Camara explained Sunday. “Definitely I put up some good numbers in [Saginaw], but when I got traded my coach was Dale Hawerchuk and he definitely knows how to play hockey. He put a couple numbers up in his day [1409 to be exact], so he taught me a few things in different situations. That definitely helped me out.”

Claude Julien took in a bit of last year’s development camp and came away particularly impressed with Camara, calling him a “pretty tough individual that can play the game.” At this year’s camp, the Bruins have observed Camara — who got in 15 fights this past season — as being every bit as tough as he was when they drafted him, but more offensively potent.

“He’s better,” Providence coach Bruce Cassidy said after Sunday’s scrimmage. “‘€¦ He wants to get noticed, finishing checks. He also prides himself on wanting to be able to to play with the puck. He doesn’t want to be typecast, so to speak, and he wants to have an all-around game.”

While the stats made it easy for Camara to be typecast on draft day, he certainly isn’t among his future teammates.

“He’s a great player,” Subban said. “He brings great energy to the game, a great hitter with a great shot.”

A great shot that can get past Subban.