Chiarelli: B's 'Done' after Busy Start to Offseason
BostonBruins.com - In what is likely to be his final media availability before the preseason kicks into gear, Bruins' General Manager Peter Chiarelli was content with where his club stood heading into 2013-14.
With the re-signing of Tuukka Rask and extension for Patrice Bergeron - both eight-year deals - complete, and the right side nearly filled out with the offseason additions of Loui Eriksson and Jarome Iginla, it doesn't appear that the Bruins will be making any more transactions this summer.
"We’re done for now," said Chiarelli from Ristuccia Arena on Sunday, where the last day of on-ice workouts for the prospects at Development Camp had wrapped up. It was in reference to a reporter's question if the Bruins had planned to bring back Jaromir Jagr.
"There’s some little things that you need to take care of but nothing significant."
It was a busy end of the season for Chiarelli and his staff, going from the Stanley Cup Final, to the draft, trade with Dallas, free agency and into Development Camp. The GM was prepared for the busy offseason, though.
"In this system, the turnover rate is high. You can see it from a ways back, what you’re going to have to do."
Competitive Training Camp on Tap
When it comes time for training camp in September, the Bruins' GM is excited to see the new additions, but also, the competitiveness that will play out, with the third line spot and defense opening that Andrew Ference left.
"Well I think it will be a new dynamic. I like the fact that we have guys that are pushing the envelope to play," said Chiarelli.
Challenge for Third Line Spot
"We’ve got enough candidates that are vying for these jobs that I’m going to wait and see how they play. I have a general sense of how I think it’ll end up, but I’m not going to comment on it publicly because I want to see."
Likely candidates are Jordan Caron, who's now entering his fourth season pro, new "prospects" Reilly Smith and Matt Fraser acquired from Dallas in the July 4 trade, and Jared Knight could be in the mix as well.
Even Anthony Camara will help provide a healthy dose of competition, coming into his first training camp.
"I’m not discounting him playing on our NHL team," said Chiarelli. "But he will probably end up in Providence."
"There’s a lot of guys trying to earn jobs. [The American Hockey League] is a good training ground for a player like Anthony."
- Chiarelli said he hasn't determined where he envisions Carl Soderberg to play yet, in terms of the wing or at center.
"Probably at center right now," said the GM. "He needs a full training camp in fairness to him and to us."
- Malcolm Subban is expected to turn pro and be with the Providence Bruins next season. B's assistant GM Don Sweeney first confirmed that trajectory for the goaltender at the start of camp.
"He had a terrific, real good year. He will benefit from the stability of one team," said Chiarelli of Subban. "He’s really young for a goalie and he’s got a real good package of skills and the head for the game...You see how athletic he is so he’s only going to get better."
- Chiarelli likes a battles between the pipes, whether at the AHL or NHL level. He said Niklas Svedberg - the AHL Goalie of the Year - has "definitely earned a look" for the back-up role with Boston.
Chad Johnson, who the B's signed as a free agent, is slotted for the back-up job as well.
Subban will be in the pro mix and first challenge for the starting role in Providence, though, we've seen how a competitive goalie tandem works well at both the American and National League levels.
- The B's back end will be younger to start 2013-14, with a number of blueliners in Torey Krug, Matt Bartkowski, Dougie Hamilton included in the young group trying to earn ice time.
"There is a freshness, a young look to it. If things aren’t working out as the season progresses I may look into [other options], but I’m ok with it."
- With the core intact, and a new-look roster, Chiarelli is looking forward to seeing his young talent challenge for spots and stay ready for their opportunity with Boston.
Overall, Chiarelli is looking forward to seeing the array of NHL players, AHL players, new additions and prospects who will be motivated to make Boston's roster out of camp.
"Part of this business is trying to bring in the new. You want to develop your talent and bring them in and let them play," said the GM.
"Sometimes there’s not room for them and sometimes you use them as chips in deals. You always have to develop and to be at a position where they’re ready to play.
"It breeds new life into everybody, and I think this year we’re going to have a bit of a challenge in that respect because we’ve played so long into the summer. It’ll be good that they'll be some young guys that’ll be coming into the lineup and breathing new life, breathing new enthusiasm into the team."