Andrej Meszaros hopes for fewer healthy scratches with Bruins
|03.05.14 at 7:02 pm ET|
Recently acquired Bruins defenseman Andrej Meszaros is on his way to Boston and could be available to the Bruins as early as Thursday night. Speaking to a pool reporter, he expressed his excitement to become a Bruin as he moves on from his days with the Flyers.
Meszaros was teammates with Zdeno Chara and Chris Kelly in Ottawa and was also a junior teammate of Milan Lucic. The Slovakia native has also been Olympic teammates with Chara since 2006. He said he spoke to Boston’s captain following the trade and looks forward to being a Bruin.
“I’m really excited obviously,” Meszaros said. “It’s a great opportunity, a great team and a great organization that I am happy to be a part of. Obviously I really liked it here in Philadelphia. It was great — great guys great organization. But this year it wasn’t working out for me. I wasn’t playing much, I was in and out of the lineup so I am happy now that I have the opportunity now to play hopefully more consistently and I’m better. So I’m happy it will be a new, fresh start for me and I am really excited.”
In and out of the lineup, indeed. Meszaros was a healthy scratch in 24 games for the Flyers this season and averaged 17:22 of ice time in the games he did play. Once the Flyers traded for Andrew MacDonald, Meszaros became expendable. Now that he’s in Boston, Meszaros hopes the scratches don’t come as frequently.
“It’s tough for any player who is not playing regularly,” he said. “We have eight defensemen over here and they were rotating us in and out of the lineup. It’s never fun; you always want to play every game and I didn’t have the chance to do that here. Hopefully I can do it in Boston and as much as I really like it here. Everybody was so nice to me, all of the trainers and everybody, the guys, all the guys in the room. This is a new opportunity for me and I’m really excited. I put it behind me now and I am going to focus for Boston and play the best that I can.”
A left shot who can play both sides, Meszaros could either try to challenge Matt Bartkowski for a spot on the left side or Kevan Miller and (eventually) Adam McQuaid for a spot on the right side. At the very least, he provides the Bruins with depth.
There may be some on-ice growing pains with Meszaros as he leaves Philadelphia, however. Peter Chiarelli told him that it might take time for him to get acclimated to the Bruins’ system, as Philadelphia plays more man-to-man and the B’s play more of a zone. The 28-year-old defenseman doesn’t think adjusting will be too big an issue.
“I think every system is different and I don’t think it’s going to be hard for me to adjust to that,” he said. “I think I’m pretty easy; anything the coach will tell me to do I think I can pick it up really quickly. So I don’t think I should have any problem with that.”