BOSTON, MA - The third day of Bruins training camp was back at TD Garden and acted as more of a morning skate in preparation for tonight’s Black & Gold scrimmage.
The B’s will face off against members of the Providence Bruins at, what is expected to be a sold out TD Garden. All 17,565 free tickets to the scrimmage were claimed and captain Zdeno Chara said that is a tribute to the passion of Bruins fans.
“We all want to play hockey, they all want to see hockey,” said Chara. “The fans are so excited to see the hockey and obviously to be supporting their own team, so now they’re going to have the chance to see both teams, basically – the whole Boston Bruins system. So, it’s going to be good.”
Coach Claude Julien is also looking forward to seeing the Garden full again.
“It’s pretty exciting to realize how quickly it sold out,” said Julien of the scrimmage. “As I’ve often said, we’ve got some pretty loyal fans here and they miss the game more than anything and they are obviously looking forward to seeing our team back on the ice.
“Our job this year is not to disappoint them.”
Tuukka Rask is going to use the scrimmage as a way to get back into a real game atmosphere in preparation for Saturday’s opener against the New York Rangers.
“I think you just try to gain that confidence tonight, and that you feel good about yourself going into Saturday,” said Rask. “And it’s good that Providence played half a season, at least. They’re going to give us a good game for sure.
“I know it’s going to be a lot of people watching us, for sure, but still for us it’s a matter of trying to find our game and getting ready for Saturday. It’s not like a regular game.”
Newcomer Chris Bourque will get his first taste of playing in front of the Garden crowd as a Bruin tonight - he played for Boston University in the 2005 Beanpot - in what will be a unique situation of playing against his teammates from the Baby B’s.
“It’s going to be awesome,” said Bourque. “I’m sure it’s going to be a pretty good crowd here. I’ve not played in the Garden where they’ve been cheering for the Bruins, for you, but I’ve been in the Garden where I’ve seen the great atmosphere.
“It’s going to be fun to be a part of and I’m sure it’s going to be fun playing against the guys that I’ve been playing with all year, so it’ll be funny.”
The only player who was missing from Tuesday morning’s practice was Rich Peverley, who coach Claude Julien said was dealing with a personal issue but will play tonight.
Julien is glad to get the chance to be in a game situation so the team is not caught off guard on Saturday night.
“To me, it’s better than nothing,” he said. “We have the choice of doing this or playing the Rangers with not having played a game at all. So, I think it’s not so much about the opponent more than it is about how we are going to play as a team.”
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