BOSTON (CBS) – The Boston Bruins have opened training camp, and are ready to defend their Stanley Cup Championship.
Players reported Friday for physicals and fitness testing. Practices will get underway on Saturday, with sessions open to the public over the weekend.
For the Bruins, after a summer of parades and celebrations, it is time to focus on the 2011-12 NHL season.
“At some point you have to turn the page. Honestly I feel like the day with the Cup helped me do that,” Patrice Bergeron said on Friday. “It was nice to get a chance to do that, share it with family and friends and see their reaction… But it really helped me put an end to that.”
“Our players seem to be in the like frame of mind in regards to that, and that’s what we like to see,” head coach Claude Julien said of his team putting last year in the past. “We just got to go out there and prove that we’re ready to go and understanding that there’s going to be challenges along the way. I mean Stanley Cup champions means teams playing at their best against you every night, so we understand that part of it and hopefully we’re going to get ourselves ready and respond properly.”
Bruins Report To Training Camp
“All 29 teams are going to want to beat us. We need to make sure we’re ready for that, and ready for a big year,” said Bergeron.
The Bruins needed three Game 7s to win the Stanley Cup last year, overcoming mental hurdles along the way. Now they need to make sure there is no championship hangover, or sense of entitlement, after being the last team left standing.
“The biggest challenge as a team is probably mentally as opposed to physically. I think that we did a lot of work with our mental strength through last year,” said defenseman Andrew Ference. “If we can keep those lessons pretty fresh, we should be in good shape.”
The Bear Essentials: Who Deserves The “A” On Their Jersey?
The Bruins have brought most of their Stanley Cup squad back for the coming season. Gone are Mark Recchi (retirement), Michael Ryder (now in Dallas) and Tomas Kaberle (now in Carolina). They have added a few pieces in defenseman Joe Corvo and forward Benoit Pouloit, and are hoping a few of their rookies will put up a fight for a roster spot.
Then there is the improvement of Tyler Seguin, who says he has put on 10 pounds over the offseason and has gotten stronger.
“For me, the main thing I worked on was my core,” said Seguin, who also feels more confident and mature heading into his second NHL season. “I thought as the season progressed I got better in the corners battling, but I still think it starts with your core. That’s what I really wanted to strengthen, being stronger with my stick and winning battles, especially in key times, will help.”
“I think right now more of it will be in his court as far as what he learned last year and what he’s willing to really come out here this year with a lot of confidence and with that experience combined,” said Julien of Seguin. “We know his skill level. If he’s able to showcase that, and on a more consistent basis, he’s going to have a bigger impact on our hockey club. We expect him to.
The DA Show: Brad Marchand On New Deal
Forward Brad Marchand just signed a two-year, $5 million deal to remain a Bruin. He joked he would like to invest his new paycheck, and on a more serious note, there will be no lack of motivation with this team heading into a new season.
“I think even more after you win the Stanley Cup, you want it that much more,” said Marchand. “That feeling is one that not many people get to feel or understand.”
98.5 The Sports Hub is the only place to hear every game of the Stanley Cup Champion Boston Bruins 2011-12 NHL season with Dave Goucher and Bob Beers.