BOSTON (CBS) — The Bruins have officially kicked off training camp practices for the 2017-18 season. They begin with a few key roster spots up for grabs, and one of them is the right wing spot alongside Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron.
It appears that rookie Anders Bjork is getting the first chance to seize that role.
The Bruins tweeted out the lines from Group A of the team’s practice at the Warrior Ice Arena on Friday. Bjork skated on the first line with Marchand and Bergeron.
The second and third lines were also of note, as Ryan Spooner centered the second forward group with Matt Beleskey on the left wing and newcomer Teddy Purcell on the right. The Bruins recently invited the 32-year-old Purcell to camp on a professional tryout (PTO). Rookie Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson, who played one game at the NHL level last season, centered the third line with Frank Vatrano to his left and David Backes to his right.
Although Bjork, a fifth-round pick in 2014, is entering his first season in the NHL, the 21-year-old arrives on the roster as a more fully-formed prospect than others in the organization. Bjork played three seasons at Notre Dame and was a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award before signing a three-year entry-level contract with the Bruins in May.
Bjork told CBS Boston’s Matt Kalman soon after he signed his contract that he’s “impressed” with how the Bruins have handled their young prospects and “extremely excited” to make the jump to the NHL. CSNNE’s Joe Haggerty believes Bjork could seize a top-six role on the team from day one.
It appears that head coach Bruce Cassidy feels the same about the dynamic young winger.