BostonBruins.com - Torey Krug had never donned the red, white and blue "USA" jersey until he hit the ice as a member of the U.S. Men's National Team at the end of April.
The team was playing an exhibition game in Austria to gear up for the 2015 International Ice Hockey Federation Men's World Championship, taking place in the Czech Republic through May 17.
"It's very special to me," said Krug, checking in with BostonBruins.com from Ostrava, Czech Republic on May 7 via phone. "This is the first time I've ever been able to wear these colors and I take a lot of pride."
"A lot of friends and family back home are proud of me and the situation that I've been blessed with and it's just been a great experience, and I'm looking forward to making sure it ends the right way."
BostonBruins.com - When the wide-smiled, long-haired 18-year-old David Pastrnak was selected 25th overall by the Bruins last June at the NHL Draft, it was hard to imagine what his future might hold.
Would he stay in Sweden? Would he play in the American Hockey League? Was he ready for the NHL?
In his mind, he knew his dream. He would do whatever he could to make it to the NHL.
"There’s a lot of things I have to work on and I will do that," Pastrnak said moments after being drafted. "And I hope I can get better and make the Bruins proud that they picked me first."
Much has happened since then for Pastrnak.
He ventured to Boston for the very first time that July and attended the club's development camp. He continued on to rookie camp, training camp, and eventually, the Providence Bruins.
Eriksson scored a hat trick in Sweden's 8-1 win over Latvia, while Krug notched a goal in Team USA's 4-2 win over Russia. Eriksson and Krug each received "Best Player of the Game" honors in the victories. The selection is chosen by the winning team.
Sweden and the U.S. are off to 3-0 starts in tournament play. They are in separate groups for the preliminary round of the tournament, with the U.S. competing in the city of Ostrava and Sweden playing in Prague.
BostonBruins.com - Torey Krug and Loui Eriksson are both in the Czech Republic representing their respective countries in the 2015 International Ice Hockey Federation Men's World Championship, taking place from May 1-17.
Krug kicked off action with Team USA on Friday in Ostrava, notching two assists in a 5-1 win over Finland. It marks his first time every wearing the red, white and blue and competing internationally for the United States.
The Bruins defenseman also picked up an assist on the game-winning goal in a 2-1 win over Norway on Saturday, when Brock Nelson deflected in his point shot. Krug fired three shots on goal in the win.
He has been mostly playing with with Carolina Hurricanes blueliner Justin Faulk on the top defense pairing, logging plenty of penalty kill and power play time. He logged 22:42 in ice time in the victory over Norway.
BostonBruins.com - When you're trying to break into the NHL, playing without fear isn't easy.
Worrying about going to the right spots, shying away from others, being hesitant in certain areas or certain situations leads to being lost, on the ice, and in your mind.
The latter affected Ryan Spooner in a string of recalls to Boston in the first two and a half seasons of his pro career.
It's tough to explain. He knew he was limiting himself, and wasn't playing to his potential. Up and down, up and down, from Providence to Boston, and back to Providence.
He got his first taste of NHL action in the 2012-13 lockout season, after being called up when David Krejci was injured. The debut - which came in Montreal - was much anticipated for the speedy, skilled forward drafted 45th overall in 2010, but the stay wasn't long, playing just four games.
Next season in 2013-14, Spooner's time in Boston was a bit longer. He again filled in amidst injuries and played 23 games, recording 11 assists, but he was back in Providence at the end of January.
BostonBruins.com - Patrice Bergeron has earned his reputation as one of the top defensive forwards in the game.
Once labeled "underrated," the 29-year-old Bruins' alternate captain has received plenty of recognition for his efforts both on and off the ice in recent years.
That's why it came as no surprise when he was announced on Wednesday night as one of three finalists for the 2015 Franke J. Selke Trophy, annually awarded "to the forward who best excels in the defensive aspects of the game." The same trio as 2014 is in the running, with Bergeron joining the LA Kings' Anze Kopitar and Chicago's Jonathan Toews as a finalist.
"It's definitely an honor, just to be part of a group like Anze Kopitar and Jonathan Toews is always something great," Bergeron told BostonBruins.com "When you do receive awards like that, or nominations, it always goes to your teammates and linemates, so I've got to be thankful to them. But at the same time, I'd much rather be playing right now, than be nominated for an individual award."
This marks Bergeron's fourth straight nomination. He won the Selke in 2014 following a Presidents' Trophy campaign for the Bruins, in which he put up 30 goals for the second time in his career. He was also awarded the honor in 2012 and finished as a runner-up to Toews in 2013.
BOSTON - The cheering echoes in the distance, the clapping thunders, and the stream of 30,000 runners is constant.
The scene towards the end of the 119th Boston Marathon on Monday, April 20 was celebratory, despite the consistent rainfall that was starting to pick up.
Out of those thousands of runners, a group of 30 finished the race with the Spoked-B on their chests, right above their pinned on numbers, representing the Boston Bruins Foundation.
The runners together raised $150,00 for the foundation.
"It was actually by Fenway Park where I got choked up and got really emotional," said Brittany Young, who works with the Boston Bruins Foundation and finished her fourth Boston Marathon on Monday. "Taking this corner, from Mile 23 to here I was like, 'alright, we're done,' and then I got to the corner and I was like, 'I don't want it to end,' so I actually purposely started running slower and and really relish each moment."
BostonBruins.com - USA Hockey announced on Tuesday that defenseman Torey Krug has been named to the 2015 U.S. Men's National Team that will compete in the 2015 International Ice Hockey Federation Men's World Championship from May 1-17 in Ostrava and Prague, Czech Republic.
It marks Krug's first time playing for Team USA.
The native of Livonia, Michigan suited up in 78 games for the Bruins this season, registering 39 points with 12 goals and 27 assists. He played his first full NHL season in 2013-14, putting up 40 points through 79 games off 14 goals and 26 assists.
Krug's U.S. hockey roots began in Michigan, and then he worked his way to the junior level, playing for the Indiana Ice in the United States Hockey League. He then played three years for Michigan State, serving as captain of the Spartans, before signing with Boston as an undrafted free agent in March 2012 and spending most of the 2012-13 season in Providence.
BostonBruins.com - On Monday at TD Garden, players filtered in and out of the locker room, holding court speaking with reporters in front of their stalls, and sitting down for meetings with their bench boss and general manager, who also addressed the media during a joint press conference.
Following another 82 games, the Bruins were left uneasy and lamenting their 2014-15 season, instead of preparing for their eighth straight playoff appearance.
From all of the players, to Head Coach Claude Julien, to General Manager Peter Chiarelli, everyone voiced his own shortcomings and took responsibility for the disappointing end.
"Obviously we didn’t deliver this season, and that’s why we’re talking here on April 13th," said David Krejci. "It’s obviously not a good feeling."
Blame can be pointed in all directions.
"I think it’s really about us not playing to our potential," said Patrice Bergeron. "I think no one’s going to stand here and say that they’ve had a good year or that they’ve overachieved, obviously. It’s a definite down year for us and we didn’t get the results because of it."
TAMPA, Fla. - The Bruins entered Saturday night with a chance.
By the time the puck dropped on Game 82 against the Tampa Bay Lightning, they were relying not only on themselves to pick up a win, but on the Pittsburgh Penguins to drop a loss to the Buffalo Sabres.
It shouldn't have come to this, but it did.
By the time Boston trailed Tampa Bay 2-1 early in the third, it didn't matter if they pushed to earn the two points. Halfway through the third period, the Bruins knew their fate, with Pittsburgh's 2-0 win over Buffalo.
For the first time since the 2006-07 season, the Spoked-B wouldn't be in the postseason.
"Well, I think everybody's pretty down right now. When you don't make the playoffs, as you know, you've failed," Head Coach Claude Julien said postgame from Tampa, following a 3-2 shootout loss to the Bolts that would have no implications moving forward.
"You like to think that everybody in there is a proud athlete and is certainly not taking this lightly, and I know all of us seem to be feeling the same way right now. Disappointing, to say the least, it's a failed season for us."