BOSTON (CBS) – The Boston Bruins open training camp on Wednesday, looking to make another run at Lord Stanley’s Cup in 2013-14.
There’s been plenty of change-over on the roster this off-season, with the departures of Tyler Seguin, Rich Peverley and Nathan Horton on the offensive end. Newcomers Jarome Iginla and Loui Eriksson will help fill the void on the top two lines, but the Bruins will likely turn to their prospects to help on the third and fourth lines.
Kirk Luedeke of The New England Hockey Journal joined 98.5 The Sports Hub’s The Adam Jones Show on Monday night, and said two players to keep an eye on this camp are Ryan Spooner and Jared Knight — who both looked impressive during Boston’s rookie camp this off-season.
“If you look at the brass-tax and the facts, Spooner is a center-man who is up against Krejci, Bergeron and Kelly, and now it looks like Campbell is on track to star the season. It’s not realistic to expect him to play wing, though he could do it,” said Luedeke. “Knight is a little more interesting; he has less experience at the pro level because last year was a lost season with his injuries. But he’s quicker, leaner, hungry as ever and a gritty guy. He can play that bottom six winger position a little more effectively, and one of the few natural right-handed shot right wingers in the organization. It’ll be interesting to see if that plays a factor or if they say, due to the lack of experience, for him to go down and play a top six forward in Providence.”
“I think you could see both players play in Boston at some point, but I don’t know if fans can realistically expect them to start the season. But you never know what happens with injuries and so on,” he said.
If the Bruins don’t go with younger players, who could make up the third line, centered by Chris Kelly?
“They could move (Carl) Soderberg to the right wing or the fourth line, potentially, and give Daniel Paille a shot. Paille played well with Kelly in the Stanley Cup Final, and you have to be thinking maybe he deserves more time on the left wing.”
“It comes down to the right wing, so you could have a Reilly Smith or a Matt Fraser (step in). I like Jared Knight competing for that. He’s a little more of a better fit, but certainly Jordan Caron is in the mix,” said Luedeke. “When you’re looking at rookies or younger guys making an impact, Knight has lack of experience working against him but he plays that bottom six role well. The key for him is production, and if he can get of that in the exhibition season and in camp, he has a shot.”