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B's Enjoy Prague, Ready for Regular Season

by Taylor Walker / Boston Bruins -- On Thursday night in Prague, the Boston Bruins joined their weekend opponents, the Phoenix Coyotes, at Hrzansky Palace as guests of the Czech Republic's Prime Minister, Petr Necas for dinner hosted by the Minister of Foreign Affairs Karel Schwarzenberg.

The Bruins received a warm reception from the dinner’s attendees, especially Czech native, David Krejci, who spoke to the audience in his native language.

“It’s always fun to see your teammates have to do stuff like that,” said B's defenseman Mark Stuart to bostonbruinsTV.

“I couldn’t understand what he was saying, but supposedly he was funny because people were laughing. I had to go ask him afterward what people were laughing about.

“He did a great job," added Stuart. "It’s an exciting moment for him to be in Prague and be able to do something like this.

"It’s got to be a lot of fun."

Bruins president Cam Neely also greeted the crowd at the palace and lauded the city of Prague and the Czech people for their gracious treatment and hospitality toward the Bruins.

Neely and Krejci returned the hospitality by presenting Minister Schwarzenberg with a personalized Boston jersey.

Bruins forward Mark Recchi watched the ceremony and agreed with Neely's sentiments. The future Hall of Famer praised the beauty of the world’s largest palace and the city of Prague itself.

“It’s been terrific. I mean the reception was great. Just had a good meal. It’s a beautiful place,” said Recchi.

“Prague is just beautiful period. We’ve had a great time getting to see the city. I’ve never had the opportunity to do that. It’s usually you come in, you play hockey, and you’re gone, so we’ve been fortunate.”

The B’s were surrounded by music, beautiful art, rich tapestries, Czech Bar-B-Que and chamber music by violinists and a harpist for one last night before the gloves come off and it’s time to get serious.

“It’s time to play. We’ve had a great time, but it’s business now,” continued Recchi.“Phoenix has a great hockey team, and it should be two really exciting hockey games."

Stuart also said that he’s ready to get back to business.

“It’s been fun-all the activities and stuff like that and being able to sightsee, but it’s going to be nice to get back at it tomorrow and start concentrating on our two regular season games coming up,” he said.

The strong leadership on this Black & Gold team is undeniable and, with the group of young talent this season, the Bruins hope to start off on the right foot this weekend.

“The team set it up properly where we’re able to do stuff together," said Recchi of training camp. “We’ve been together and we’ve grown together and been through some good times, some fun times, and been enjoying each other and enjoying other countries, and it’s been wonderful.

“Now hopefully, throughout the course of the year, this pays off.”
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