Krug: Playing An Outdoor Hockey Game ‘A Different World’

Gresh & Zolak

BOSTON (CBS) — As most of the world did on Sunday night, the Boston Bruins got together to watch the New England Patriots win their fourth Super Bowl championship in franchise history.

Bruins defenseman Torey Krug joined 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Gresh & Zolak on Friday for his weekly call into the show, and shared a little bit from their viewing party. Like everyone else, the B’s were on the edge of their seats at the end of the game.

“For the second year that I’ve been here we watched it as a group. We were able to celebrate the Patriots victory [as a team],” said Krug. “It was a fun game to watch, all the way down to that interception. It was a little nerve-wracking, but we had a blast.”

Those nerves disappeared as soon as Malcolm Butler made his game-saving interception at the one-yard line with just 20 seconds remaining.

“We were all excited as a group. It was pretty crazy,” he continued. “Everyone was pretty nervous; it was pretty quiet in that room. All of a sudden we see the interception and everyone erupted.”

Next season the Bruins will get to play on the same field as the Patriots,  though they’ll do so with a nice sheet of ice covering the Gillette Stadium turf. The Bruins will face off against the Montreal Canadiens on New Year’s Day in the NHL’s Winter Classic.

It’s a game Krug is already excited about, having experienced some outdoor hockey during his college days at Michigan State. Krug’s Spartans played in-state rival Michigan in front of over 100,000 fans in what was dubbed “The Big Chill” at Michigan Stadium in 2010.

A general view of the Big Chill game between the Michigan State Spartans and Michigan Wolverines with an attendance of 113,441, the largest crowd to ever watch a hockey game, at Michigan Stadium on December 11, 2010 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)

A general view of the Big Chill game between the Michigan State Spartans and Michigan Wolverines with an attendance of 113,441, the largest crowd to ever watch a hockey game, at Michigan Stadium on December 11, 2010 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)

“It’s a crazy feeling,” explained Krug. “I played an outdoor game when I was at Michigan State in front of a lot of people and it’s a different world. It’s a different animal when you’re playing outside with all the different elements.”

Though Krug’s Spartans lost the game 5-0, it was an experience he’ll never forget.

“It’s a lot of fun and you get to have your friends and family come into town,” he recalls. “The overall performance is great, so everybody is looking forward to [the Winter Classic].”

As for the current state of the Bruins, they’re on a bit of a roll despite a hiccup in New York on Wednesday night.

“It’s a combination of a few things. It started off getting a healthy and consistent group,” Krug said of Boston’s recent turnaround. “From there it has evolved into us playing Bruins hockey again; really simple hockey, a north-south game and skating really fast. We’re playing with a little bit more of an edge, and I think all those things combined has helped us win more hockey games. We’re excited moving forward.”

The Bruins have a big test this weekend with a tough back-to-back, hosting the New York Islanders on Saturday and Montreal Canadiens on Sunday.

“It’s a good challenge for us,” said Krug. “It’s definitely a measuring stick with two teams we could be facing off against in the first round of the playoffs.”

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