BOSTON, MA - The 2013-14 NHL regular season is finally here. With other clubs having already dropped the puck on their season openers, the B's are prepping for the beginning of their season on Thursday night against the Tampa Bay Lightning at TD Garden.
By now, the "new faces" like Loui Eriksson, Jarome Iginla, Chad Johnson and Reilly Smith have been acclimated to the the team, and the Captain is ready for this group to begin their journey.
"We did some activities and we had some time during training camp to bond. This team has been always really good to welcome new guys and make them part of the team and we’ve never had issues with that," Zdeno Chara told media following the team's practice Wednesday morning, back at TD Garden following their team-building trip to Vermont.
"But you see how it goes and try to do whatever we can for each other."
"Overall you have to do your best every game and try to win every game; that’s the goal for this team when the season starts."
The B's were sharp during their skate, and looked focused and ready for the puck to drop.
In preparation for the opener, all of the B's hit the ice - except for Carl Soderberg.
David Krejci joined his teammates on the ice for the first time since Friday morning in Saskatoon before the final preseason against the Winnipeg Jets. He had left the ice with back spasms then. The centerman did not join the team on their trip to Vermont to keep recovering, in order to help get himself ready for the season.
On Wednesday, he was skating with usual linemates Milan Lucic and Jarome Iginla.
"Well as you know I had a little back problem. It was my first time skating after a few days so it felt okay, but we’re going to have to make a decision tomorrow [Thursday] if I’ll play or not," Krejci told reporters gathered for the Bruins' annual "Media Day" before the season kicks off.
He hasn't experienced an injury - however slight - like this in a while.
"I had a back issue my first year, so 6-7 years ago, and it didn’t bother me at all for a long time," added Krejci. "It’s just one of those things; I feel okay."
While he's still in question to be in the lineup against Tampa Bay, his situation is much more hopeful than Carl Soderberg's right now.
Soderberg hit a rut in the ice in Saskatoon in the third period of the 5-0 win over the Jets, and has had some swelling around his ankle.
Bruins Head Coach Claude Julien said they won't know his exact situation and the timing of his recovery - if he needs any - until the swelling goes down more.
Soderberg was placed on retroactive injured reserve and has to be out a minimum of seven days before he's qualified to come back into the lineup. Meaning, he won't be available to play Thursday night in the home opener but if he's healthy, could be available for Saturday against the Detroit Red Wings.
With Soderberg not on the ice, Jordan Caron filled in on the third line wing with Chris Kelly and Reilly Smith. Wednesday marked the first practice that the B's sported there color scheme practice jerseys.
White: Milan Lucic-David Krejci-Jarome Iginla
Gold: Brad Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-Loui Eriksson
Grey: Jordan Caron-Chris Kelly-Reilly Smith
Merlot: Daniel Paille-Gregory Campbell-Shawn Thornton
Zdeno Chara-Johnny Boychuk
Dennis Seidenberg-Dougie Hamilton
Torey Krug-Adam McQuaid
Matt Bartkowski rotated through the pairings
Tuukka Rask, Chad Johnson