The Boston Bruins officially start their 2013-14 season today. Bruins training camp is underway. The next few days will be getting the players through off ice testing. Essentially, checking up on the fitness level of the players fighting for a spot on the roster this year. (The off ice testing will be closed to the public, although the practices on Saturday and Sunday at the TD Garden starting at 10am, will be open to the public.) While no player’s job is totally safe, it’s pretty clear at this point who the team and the organization will have as their top six forwards and their number one goaltender.
The rest of the spots are up for grabs though. “The spots for competition have grown this year, and that third line, there’s a lot of different ways to look at it.” offered Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli at last night’s ‘State of the Bruins’ at the TD Garden. “[Matt]Fraser, [Reilly]Smith, [Jordan]Caron, [Ryan]Spooner, [Jared]Knight. These are young players who are an upward trajectory.” Chiarelli spelled out how fluid the starting line up could be. That Chiarelli did it in front of 1.)over two thousand season ticket holders and 2.) in front of Bruins third line center Chris Kelly spells out how anything could happen during this training session.
I still like Chris Kelly, he’s a good leader for the team. I really hope that was just a semi-gentle push for him, and not the beginning of Chiarelli shopping Kelly around. On another note, I thought it was appropriate and deserving for the season ticket holders to give Patrice Bergeron a standing ovation at his introduction.
The blueline situation is just as fluid, if not more so. It’s a safe bet that Zdeno Chara, Johnny Boychuk, Dennis Seidenberg, and Adam McQuaid will stay as defensemen. That leaves only three available spots, and a lot of young players scrapping hard to get one. While the early money is on Dougie Hamilton, Matt Bartkowski, and Torey Krug, most of the Providence squad’s d-men will be part of the training camp. If those young players aren’t careful, they could find themselves wearing a ‘P’ or being put on waivers.
As for goaltending, the number two position is essentially a coin toss. The Bruins brought in Chad Johnson from Phoenix to fill the hole left by Anton Khudobin‘s departure. However, the Bruins had the best AHL goalie in the league playing for them in Providence, and perhaps its time for Niklas Svedberg to be the new number two member of Boston’s crease police.
Here’s my breakdown of what I’d like to see the final roster look like for Boston.
Zdeno Chara-Dougie Hamilton
Johnny Boychuk-Dennis Seidenberg
Adam McQuaid-Torey Krug
That’s the team I would like to see. Anyway, I’d love to hear from ya to get your opinion, hear your ideas, or even be told in coarse language that I must be inhaling illegal substances to come up with this list. Throw us a line at @Causeway_Crowd on Twitter or Causeway Crowd on Facebook.