“It’s always fun to have people watch practice,” Head Coach Claude Julien said. “It’s probably encouraging for the players as well when [the fans are] cheering them on.”
Following Saturday’s 4-2 loss to the Dallas Stars, Julien and the B’s hit the ice hard in an effort to sharpen their skills for Wednesday’s matchup with the New Jersey Devils.
“Well I think just the whole aspect of the game, there were areas I don’t think we played extremely well,” forward Chris Kelly
said when asked what he and his teammates worked on during the session. “Our forecheck, our D-zone and our neutral zone could have been much better.
"I thought today was a good day to address those things.”
The Bruins are taking on a heavy schedule after a relatively spread out first half of the season, and Kelly said that he enjoyed the intense session.
Forward Shawn Thornton
agreed, and was glad to hit the ice hard after Saturday’s loss.
“There’s going to be those games throughout the season, but we have to make sure we make the right steps to get it going the other way for Wednesday, and I think today was a good start for that,” Thornton said.
“I think the drills were set up as a bit of a work day, which was nice. I got a good sweat – being heavy on pucks and battling, and a lot of focus on that stuff. We have another day to prepare tomorrow, then get into Jersey and get ready for the big one.”
Over the past two games, the Bruins have faced some nontraditional opponents in Western conference foes Phoenix and Dallas, and will face a more familiar opponent Wednesday night.
But for defenseman Andrew Ference
, that familiarity doesn’t matter and he sees the matchup as just another game the team will have to work hard in to earn the win.
“It’s another team that’s going to be ready for us,” Ference said. “I’m not that wrapped up -- and I don’t think too many guys are wrapped up -- in who the opponent is, whether it’s a Western conference team or an Eastern team.
"I think we’re ready to take anybody on –we know we’re seeing everybody’s best.”