BOSTON (CBS) – Boston Bruins defenseman Johnny Boychuk joined 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Toucher & Rich on Thursday morning, as the Bruins get ready for their season-opener against the New York Rangers on Saturday night.
With no preseason games, the Bruins held a scrimmage against the Providence Bruins on Tuesday night at the Garden. The Baby B’s got the better of the Boston squad in their only game-action warmup before the season starts, and Boychuk thinks that could be a good thing.
“It didn’t mean a lot, but it’s probably a big wake up call for some guys and our team,” said the B’s defenseman. “Really, for us to not be making plays and trying to do too much; there were a lot of mistakes out there. It’s good that it happened to us because we wouldn’t want that happening in the regular season, so we may as well let it happen now and learn from it.”
In addition to having the most players play overseas during the NHL lockout, the Bruins also have the benefit of having most of their 2011 Stanley Cup winning team back. Boychuk believes this will give them an advantage when it comes to team chemistry over teams that have added new pieces this off-season.
“It’s going to help us, it’s going to bring the chemistry back quicker than any other team,” he said. “We’ll be ready to go no matter what, because we don’t have that much time to get ready. We have to be ready.”
One new piece to the puzzle for Boston will be rookie defenseman Dougie Hamilton. He’s expected to start the season and Boston, and will likely play alongside Dennis Seidenberg. Should he experience some growing pains, the 19-year-old will have plenty of help from his veteran teammates as he breaks the ice in the NHL.
“I think everybody has [helped him along the way],” said Boychuk. “If they see something they’ll tell him to try this, or try to do that. I think it’s everybody, but he really looks up to Zdeno (Chara).”
While he’s only been on the ice with Hamilton for a few days, Boychuck said he hasn’t seen many rookie mistakes out of him.
“It’s just getting the speed of the game under your belt. It’s a lot faster than in juniors and in Providence,” noted Boychuck. “It’s just getting the speed up, and then you’ll see what he can do.”
Also, find out what Boychuck had to drink in the locker room while overseas. And is he looking forward to a very busy month of March for the Bruins? Find out all that and more as Johnny Boychuk joins Toucher & Rich!