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Gameday Running Quotes: Bruins vs Washington Capitals 1/5/16

by Staff Writer / Boston Bruins
BOSTON BRUINS POSTGAME QUOTES

BOSTON BRUINS VS. WASHINGTON CAPITALS
Tuesday, January 5, 2016

BOSTON BRUINS COACH CLAUDE JULIEN POSTGAME PRESS CONFERENCE 9:45 P.M.
On Adam McQuaid’s status…
Nothing further. Again after a game I don’t have that much information Joe [Haggerty].

On if the team can build on the positive effort from tonight…
I think you said it right, there’s no moral victory. I can’t criticize the effort our team gave tonight. In the situation we’re in we almost had to play a perfect game to beat those guys and I think we gave ourselves a chance there. I don’t think we ever quit when we were down a goal, down two came back into it, down two again came back and you know made a big save on Zee [deno Chara] at the end in order to keep that game from being tied. I think our guys tried - really tried - but at the same time you know in this league you got to win hockey games so we got to be disappointed, we got to be maybe hungrier for next game so that we can turn things around here and hopefully the bitterness in our mouth from losing tonight is going to carry into Thursday here in New Jersey – Friday, sorry.

On the team’s improvement from their performance at the Winter Classic…
Yes for me disappointed at the loss, not disappointed in the effort and you know I think that’s the biggest thing. Our guys worked hard, they tried, we had chances and this is a good hockey club. I said it this morning this is probably in my mind one of the best – if not the best – teams in the league. They’re well balanced and you know goaltender comes big for them again tonight and you know we managed to get a couple of goals on him but we had to work hard to get those. They do a good job of really keeping you on the inside so you got to work extremely hard to get on the inside on these guys and I thought our guys you know did well at that from the second period on.

On how Joonas Kemppainen looked in his first game back…
I thought he did well. He was out for a while so you know it was nice to see him back in our lineup.

On the team’s struggles in the first period…
Yeah and that’s what I said you know Matt [Kalman]? I said from the second period on I thought we worked really hard getting pucks to the net. [I] Think in the first period again they were doing a good job of keeping us on the outside and we weren’t doing a good job of getting on the outside so that had to change and I thought the guys responded well from the second period on.

On whether the officials gave him an explanation regarding the no-call on the McQuaid hit…
They felt that… they didn’t I guess seem to get a good look at it or just seemed to think it was maybe two minutes at best or you know – I had the luxury of going back to my office and looking at the replay. Obviously for me there should have been a call there but you know we’ll see how the league deems it. It was definitely a hit from behind in my book but we’ll let the other people take care of it as always.

On the defense’s effort down a defenseman…
Yeah our D’s did a decent job but again you know the goals that they scored, we still got to be better. We got to win those battles in front of the net. We can’t let those passes go through our… I guess our defensive layer on that first goal. You know if we do our job properly that pass doesn't get through. There’s mistakes being made but as I mentioned earlier when you give that team those kind of opportunities they’re pretty good at burying them.

On the importance of the upcoming road trip …
Well it is a big game – sorry - road trip coming up and we have to approach it that way. I’m hoping that our group here is going to be ready for that challenge and you know again looking at the smaller picture that's the next game against New Jersey, let’s see if we can get on a roll here an build on that and so that’s what we need to look at and there’s no reason for us to not have the confidence with the record that we have on the road and hopefully we can you know have that and go out there and prove that we still got a good road team.

BOSTON BRUINS FORWARD LOUI ERIKSSON
On the team’s effort tonight…
I don’t know, it was a little bit up and down maybe? We’re playing a good team and they took advantage of it maybe in the first and got the lead. We came back a couple times but in the end of it they won the game so it’s tough we need to start winning games.

On whether it is tough to play catch-up the entire game…
Yeah it’s never easy, especially against a team like that we know they have a good goalie there in their net. We’ve been kind of having a hard time to score goals on them too. In the end of it we just have to put on a little bit better effort, we know how big a win is right now, we need to get going.

On what the team needs to do to create better scoring chances…
Just think our forecheck needs to be a little harder, sometimes we’re a little bit late sometimes in the forecheck giving them some extra time. We need to get more shots too. I think we’re able to do it and hopefully we can get something good going here on the road. We’re off on a big road trip coming up.

On if he feels the team is stuck in a rut after losing five of six…
I mean it’s never fun to lose five out of six. We’re still in a good position in the standings - I don’t know it’s not a good position - but we’re still right there so hopefully like I said we can get some wins on the road there and keep climbing up. We know other teams are battling for points too. We need to start winning again and get the points.

On the positives from tonight they can bring into New Jersey…
I mean like I said we’ve been good on the road so hopefully we can bring that road mentality like we’ve been having and trying to get the win. They’re [New Jersey] a good team too we need to like I said start winning and get points here hopefully we can start against them.

BOSTON BRUINS FORWARD JOONAS KEMPPAINEN
On how he felt during the game…
After two periods I felt better and when the game went on it felt better and better all the time.

On if he felt like he was improving after each shift…
Yeah I think so. Like I said it was a pretty rusty start but I think I played a little bit better all the time. So now the first game is over and it’s a little bit easier to continue on.

On what he thought of the team effort tonight…
I think we played a pretty good game. Obviously we lost but I think there were good things. It was still a tough loss. Obviously we want to win every game so I think it was a pretty good game from us.

On what he thinks from watching the team lately…
I think we have played the best game when we have kept things simple and work hard. And I think there’s no secret in our game, like forecheck hard and on the defense side. So those are the keys in our game.

BOSTON BRUINS DEFENSEMAN TOREY KRUG
On whether he felt this game was an opportunity to use Washington as a measuring stick despite the team’s injuries…
Yeah, I mean every time you go up against the league’s best team it’s a good way to gauge where you’re at, and I think we played okay. We always have opportunities to be better, and, you know, it’s a good way to make sure we stay hungry and keep trying to beat the best teams. You know, just a couple times there we get a chance and if we can bury it then, you know, it’s a different game.

On what the difference was tonight versus the last game in terms of finding their legs and getting back in it…
I thought we were more committed to playing intense and solid defense in our zone and we were committed to battling. I think they have a big team who’s physical and likes to hang on the puck and, you know, likes to try and take you off the puck, and I thought just, we were just more committed for sure tonight compared to, you know, last game.

On whether he feels good about their ability to hang in there tonight despite losing Adam McQuaid…
I mean it’s tough obviously losing Quaider. He’s played some valuable minutes for us and… but, you know, tonight it’s tough to take away moral victories when you’re so committed to winning and, you know, every game you come into it with the expectation to come out with two points, especially in your building, so it’s tough to take those, you know, that good feeling away. We’ll look on it tomorrow and reflect on it and see where we can improve and just keep moving forward.

On whether they are looking forward to the road trip because of their record on the road…
Yeah, I mean, the last month we’ve tried to claw our way back at home and get on the other side of .500 here at our home building and tried to get some valuable points, so now we have an opportunity to go on the road, and, you know, we play well out there. I don’t know what it is. We really simplify our game and we’re able to come away with points and… so I know personally I’m looking forward to the road trip. It’s always fun to go out there with your teammates and go into another team’s building and try to steal points, so we’ve got to take that mindset in there.

On whether an effort like tonight’s can help the team as they start the road trip…
Yeah, you always want to, you know, try to take away positives. Like I said earlier, it’s tough because we’re so committed to winning and looking at results, but this point in the season we’ve got to start fine tuning our game and trying to come away with points because our standings are so tight, so, you know, we’ll move on and we’ll take the positives, whatever it is, and just carry it into the next one, but, you know, we’ve got to start getting results.

On having a 10 minute stretch in the first period without a shot on goal and being in a similar situation last game and what the team can do to combat that…
Well it’s, every game is going to have a little bit of drop. You know, just a matter of trying to make sure it doesn’t last too long. I think it’s been taking too long to kind of conquer those little lulls within the game, and, you know, emotionally and physically we’ve got to find some energy and just overcome that to try to limit it as much as possible. You know, if it’s going on for 10 minutes that’s way too long for sure.

On whether they’re still learning how to be effective on the power play without David Krejci…
Yeah, we’re still learning. You know, obviously Millsy [Colin Miller] was in there today and I thought we still had some good chances. You know, easily could have scored on the first couple power plays. There was only probably one really good chance, but you come away with a goal there it’s a different hockey game, so we put a lot of pressure on ourselves as a power play because we’ve been so good this year in winning us games that [we’re] a little disappointed with our first two opportunities and the third one was just a short one and then we were able to capitalize on the fourth. That was a big goal for our team.

On it being tough to see McQuaid on the receiving end of a hit like that…
It is. He’s a punishing force himself so to see when a guy like that goes into the boards, a guy that, you know, really plays for the team and sticks up for his teammates and everything he does is just so unselfish, so to see him go down is tough. You know, you want to respond for a guy like that. It’s just tough to see happen.

On whether you can respond in today’s game when you see a hit like that…
Go fight a guy? Yeah, why not? I mean, personally I think we didn’t have the personnel out there. I mean, Bergy [Patrice Bergeron] went over and let the guy know that he didn’t like the hit, and I was out there for, you know, a whole shift. You don’t want to go fight a guy at the end of a two-minute shift, but it still happens. I mean, if I got hit, Quaider’s going to go over there and let the guy know he didn’t like it, so one of our star players is going over there and telling the guy he didn’t like the hit. He’s not going to drop his gloves, but, you know, if someone else is out there he’s going to let him know.

On whether having a different guy on the power play every game changes what he does…
There’s different things. With different people you have to utilize what they do well differently. You know, Zee’s [Zdeno Chara] got the big shot and he really draws attention to himself and it allows other things to open up, and Colin [Miller], he can rip the puck as well. I don’t think other teams really know that yet, but… and he’s got that one timer and he’s able to move the puck pretty well too and see the ice, so it changes a little bit what you have to do, but at the end of the day all power plays have to out work the penalty kill and just capitalize on the opportunities that you get and we’ve been, you know, even without Krech we’ve been pretty consistent now.

BOSTON BRUINS FORWARD RYAN SPOONER
On defending against the Capitals offensive cycle…
Yeah, um, I guess there are a couple guys on their team that like to go all the way down then come all the way up to the blue line, so, um, it’s a centerman; sometimes it’s hard. Um, I think as a whole we need to kinda cut the ice in half and couple times we didn’t do that so, um, it was tough. We got caught, um, on that goal there so, um, definitely something we need to work on.

On it being tough to see Adam McQuaid go down...
Yeah, um, it’s never nice to see that, you know? I didn’t really see the hit, um, I just know he’s going into the boards and, uh, I guess it was just a bad bounce, ya know. I hope he’s fine.

On if the team is feeling like they’re in a rut…
Um, some of those games I feel like we haven’t played, um, I guess that’s the best we can, ya know? Um, I think tonight, um, I think we played a pretty solid game. Um, just didn’t get the bounces so there’s some stuff I guess to build off of, um, there’s some stuff to fix for sure.

On playing with Matt Beleskey and Landon Ferraro…
It was good. Um, you know, Skey [Matt Beleskey] gets the front of the net, um, and you know, Landon [Ferraro] gots some speed and some skills so I thought we had a couple looks there. Um, they’re a tough team, I guess, to get to the front of the net again so, um, we were there maybe three or four times but, um, it would have been nice, you know, I guess to score a couple times for sure.

On what needs to happen to get off on the right foot going into the long road trip…
Yeah, um, our team has been a lot better on the road so, um, might be I guess a good thing for us, but, um, I think we just need to stick to how we’ve been playing, you know. Uh, it’s a long season you’re going to have some ups and you’re going to have some downs, so, um, I think for us we just need to focus on our game and just go from there.

On the Capitals being a tough team to handle…
Yeah, um, you know, I’d say probably the top five or six teams in the league; they have a top, I guess, nine that can score and, um, they definitely have that for sure. You know, I think for the most part, um, we played a pretty solid game; it was just a couple plays that just, um, we could have played maybe a little bit differently and we just didn’t. I guess that’s just how it goes.

On what makes the Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby so good…
Um, I think against us, um, we just need to get in front of him a little bit more. Um, I think I’ve played against him four or five times in the last two years and the most goals we’ve scored against him is two. Um, he’s a good goalie, you know, his stats, um, I’m not sure what they are but I know that, um, he’s having a great season, so I think when you play against him, um, their team as a whole, it’s hard to get to the front of the net so that definitely helps him out. And, I think tonight, you know, we got there a couple times but, um, definitely not enough for sure.

BOSTON BRUINS FORWARD PATRICE BERGERON
On the effort tonight compared to the Winter Classic…
Yeah definitely a much better effort, you know. It’s tough to come up short like that when you’re…you know the effort was there but at the same time we have to manage to create a little bit more chances and do a better job in our zone again.

On what needs to happen to create more scoring chances and better scoring chances…
You know being a little bit more on the puck I guess offensively. I think we have a lot of one and done kind of type of chances right now and we have to sustain pressure in their zone and find ways to do that by being on our toes and really…Yeah like I said, being on the puck and from there having some good cycles and chances in front of the net.

On how his chin is doing after taking the puck to his face…
Yeah it’s fine. I mean it’s just stitches but, [smiles] it didn’t feel good to get hit right away by [Alexander] Ovechkin right after I got it in the face. But I mean it’s fine.

On how upset he was with the hit on Adam McQuaid…
Yeah I though it was a bad hit. I mean it was one of those where it happens fast and you know from the way that I…from my angle I guess it was a bad hit, you know. There was no point, no need for it to hit him like that and definitely tough to see Adam [McQuaid] go down as hard as he did.

On if Zach Sill said anything to him…
He was just telling me to I guess to get away. And he thought it was a good hit. But there was no way possible that he could really believe that.

On if he was surprised it was not a penalty…
I was actually. I mean it happens fast. Like I said, it’s one of those things where you know you can’t really blame it on the refs because it’s you know there’s lots of things that are going on, on the ice but from my angle I thought it was.

On if Zach Sill mentioned that Adam McQuaid had hit him before…
No he didn’t say anything about that. I didn’t know that so no.

On the upcoming road trip…
Yeah it’s a huge road trip, it’s a long one. We know we’re playing some big teams, especially early on some good teams. You know yeah we have to turn this around and sometimes it’s a good thing to go on the road and feel good about ourselves.

On losing five games out of the last six…
I think we have to find ways to generate more goals, more chances. I thought it was a much better effort but still not good enough you know. At the end of the day you need to get wins and the standings are way too tight to let games like that slip by. But we have to realize that it was a better effort and hopefully we can you know move and be a little better again next game and you know get back on the winning column.

BOSTON BRUINS GOALTENDER TUUKKA RASK
On if this effort was better than the last game…
Yeah I think so. I think we played a bit smarter overall, you know. It’s still a loss but we played better I thought. Not as many scoring chances defensively from around the net area so I think that’s an improvement.

On what he liked about the structure they played tonight…
I don’t know I guess we played a decent game. It was a weird game. It looked like there were some moments where we had a lot of emotion but then at times it was kind of just not a whole lot going on out there. It was a weird game. I mean structure-wise I guess defensively it was a better, a couple of breakdowns cost us a goal I guess but you know, okay effort after… I don’t know. I really don’t know what to think of this game. We lost.

On what needs to happen in this upcoming road trip to salvage the emotion…
Well I think offensively we’re probably… we’re not creating as many chances as we used to. I think that’s probably the difference, you know what I mean? That’s really all I can see from my perspective probably. Obviously we’re missing a couple of key forwards so that, you know, goes to say that. But I think offensively we’re not kind of getting inside there and getting those second chances or clear third chances. I think that’s the biggest thing we need to improve on.

WASHINGTON CAPITALS FORWARD MARCUS JOHANSSON
On his rebound goal being the eventual game winner …
Yeah it’s always fun to score, I mean I thought the first one was going to go in, I tipped it into the post first but somehow it found its way back to me so it was a little lucky goal but you know that’s something that you get when you go to the net and it turned out to be a big one.

On it being a big road win for the team…I think we came out better right away I think and you know I think when we get the lead and play the way we can then I think we are really really tough to beat and get something going on I think.  I think we showed that tonight and when teams get by us we have Holts [Braden Holtby] back there and it’s pretty comfortable.
On him being a lot better in the face off circle tonight…Yeah absolutely I mean it’s something you have to get better on if you're going to play center here for a little bit and you know it’s a big part of the game and you know it’s good that it was a little better at least.

On if he felt more comfortable playing center tonight…Yeah right from the start I think it took me a half a period in the first game to kind of get used to it but now it feels good, I’m pretty comfortable and I have a pretty good idea of where to be out there.

On the team using it’s speed to beat the Bruins tonight…Yeah I mean I think on our line we have a lot of speed and I think we should use it.  I think in the first period we had a great period and we could have scored a couple goals even.  You know I think on our line we have to use that.

On the play of Evgeny Kuznetsov…
I think he’s just really confident right now and you know I think everybody is seeing what he can do with the puck and when you have that confidence you know it’s pretty fun to watch him play.  He’s doing pretty good right now.

On the play of Braden Holtby…
It’s amazing.  He stands on his head every night and you know it’s just comfortable to have him back there and you know when he can come up with these saves like he does every night and wins us games it feels like every week and you know that’s something that you can't take for granted and we are really really fortunate to have him back there.

WASHINGTON CAPITALS FORWARD EVGENY KUZNETSOV
On how he used his speed to effect this game...
Always, you know, when you lose two games, and your energy is high, we talk about the loss in the second game, but we losing in Columbus... no way we are going to loose today, you know, and be by everybody and just have to push it back, you know.

On what the mood was like for the team after their two losses in previous games...
Nothing its uh, you know it’s... it’s really important for us that our mentality never was loss in the second game in the row and that’s heartening to lose a couple, and you know to be very important to us that just be there, like I said.

On what he’s looking for when he is circling his zone after a penalty kill...
Yeah, I can try to find somebody and I just not make sure I just give it to somebody and I want to keep pucks in the hands and try to make the plays. I think it’s good when we play in offensive zone and carry the puck and somebody think we killed the time, but no we try to find a better spot for our play.

On how it feels to play with Andre Burakovsky...
Very nice.

On how me has many points as he did in 80 games last season, and what the key is to his improvement...
I think all team members have good points right? I don’t care about my game, I want to say better words right now.

WASHINGTON CAPITALS FORWARD ANDRE BURAKOVSKY
On if he feels like he getting more confidence with two goals in the last four games...
Yeah, like I said the other day I was here I think.. I think the last games here I’ve been feeling really good. I feeling fresh with my body, I’m skating good, I really want the puck the whole time so it feels really good.

On how he goes about making a play in the zone with Evgeny Kuznetsov...
I mean when Kuz [Evgeny Kuznetsov] had the puck there, my... job was to find open ice because we know Kuzy [Evgeny Kuznetsov] can give us the puck as soon as we are open for like a half second, the puck is going to be there so our job is to just find an open spots on ice because Kuz [Evgeny Kuznetsov] can really find himself on ice.

On if he felt like he played more physical tonight...
Yeah sometimes I have to be that, too. It’s not something that happens every game but.. I mean you kind of want to battle for the puck when you get in there and show what I can do. We did a good job, too.

WASHINGTON CAPITALS GOALTENDER BRADEN HOLTBY
On how big the first two penalty kills were for the team…
Big.  Especially because it didn't go so well in Columbus last game, and that was I thought on large part because of me and the second one in Columbus was something that we wanted to clean up and I thought our PK was very good all game, obviously they scored one off of our stick, we did the right things and sometimes it bounces in like that.  I thought we did the right things all night, especially on the PK.

On the toe save he made on Bergeron early in the game…That was one of those that I knew was going to get blocked, I was just trying to stay tight off the deflection and it kind of squirted slowly enough to him that I needed to intercept it somehow and luckily I got a toe on it.
On the confidence he has playing against the Bruins…It’s a good challenge every time we play them, they are a hard-nosed team, they put a lot of traffic out front of the net and that’s fun for me to try and fight for pucks.  We match up well against them I think to make good hockey games and they are one of those teams that is going to be around for the whole year, chasing for maybe a first round playoff appearance for us against them so we got to make sure we prepare against every team in that area.

On if the Bruins are a different team without Marchand & Krejci...Yeah I mean we are a different team without [John] Carlson, [Jay] Beagle and [Brooks] Orpik too.  It’s never an excuse.  We don’t use it as an excuse and I’m sure they don’t use that either.

On what it’s like to be the team that everyone is chasing…Yeah it’s a good spot to be because they challenge you every night.  I mean we have been in the position where we have played those top teams during the regular season and you always get up a little bit more for it because you want to test yourself and I think that's good for us.  That means that we can’t back off at all and it tests our game every night no matter if it’s a lower seeded team or higher.  Everyone is playing their best hockey, or trying to against us and it’s the best scenario in order to build your game.



HEAD COACH CLAUDE JULIEN PREGAME PRESS CONFERENCE AT 10:45 AM
On how much a team win tonight would give a boost to the team…
Well I think it’s important for us to think that we need to win a hockey game here and nothing changes from before- the standings, the games in hand…you have to win. And again especially the way that last game ended we certainly needed a better performance from our team.

On facing Braden Holtby in 2012…
I don’t think I…actually I don’t think he was, from my recollection, I don’t think he was a big topic. You know we had to score some goals there’s no doubt, but for us it was about winning the series. I still remember that game seven overtime goal. It probably, in hindsight, would’ve been called back that I remember. But other than that you know it was a close series. They were still a good team back then too- they had some good players. So that’s about all. You know that was four years ago for me or close to four years ago so when I talk about we need to move on that’s what we’re talking about here. Not just about…

On a young goaltender developing and the success that he’s had…
Well you know he was a young goaltender to have a lot to gain and nothing to lose. And to have seen those situations before, you can even go back to Ken Dryden if you want but you probably wouldn’t know anything about that. [Smiles]. Yeah so, he came out of college and did a great job. Those guys have nothing to lose but more importantly than that I think you have to give him credit for… it wasn’t just a fluke it was the start of him being a great goaltender. And he is, I mean he’s done well for them. What’s impressive too is his endurance- the number of games he’s played and plays and how well he does. So I give him a lot of credit. From what I can see from the outside he looks like a very focused individual and he seems like a very determined athlete. So you have to give those guys, you know, not be afraid to give those guys even- if they’re not on your team- a lot of credit because I think he’s a guy you have to admire for how he’s handled himself.

On not having a lot of centers recently and how Joonas Kemppainen coming back will help them…
Well it hurts. I think it’s been obvious in the faceoffs and how we’ve lost faceoffs, you know, in our end especially and losing them clean and then other teams get possession of the puck a lot more than we’re used to. And you know when you don’t win them you have to chase that puck. When you win it you start with it. People don’t realize sometimes how important that is. And for our team not to have those centermen winning draws I guess closer to 55 percent or more a game is huge. We miss that. And it’s been a huge part of our game; it’s been a strong suit for a long, long time. So there’s no doubt that hurts our game.

On if Joonas Kemppainen is definitely back in tonight…
I’m still not 100 percent, but there’s a good possibility he will be.

On facing adversity and what his team does well to bounce back…
Well I think even if we have a lot of guys that are young, I think as a group our determination has been pretty good over the course of the season so far in wanting to, you know, turn things around and bounce back. And I know we’ve gone through a couple of slumps that probably lasted longer than we would’ve liked to but, you know again, the resilience of our group is there and we keep trying to grow this team and get better. I don’t think we’re the elite team that the Washington Capitals are, by no means, but it doesn’t mean you can’t play and you can’t beat a team like that. It just means, you know, throughout the whole year they’ve got the experience, they’ve got the depth. I think they’re solid in almost all positions. We were that team at one point. We’re not there now; we’re trying to build ourselves towards that.

On Frank Vatrano playing wing and what he thinks will happen when David Pastrnak returns…
Well I think we didn’t expect him to be here either for that long. I didn’t say we didn’t think he wouldn’t play a few games but I think the fact that he had a good start to the season in Providence and the fact that we ran into injuries kind of forced us to bring him up. And he’s done a decent job, you know. You’re going to see those young players every once in a while hit a dip just like everybody else, especially in their first year. So you know he’s given us some big goals; he’s given us some big games. And for him I think the biggest thing is I find he’s probably well ahead of schedule from what we all predicted. So that’s a feather in his cap- he deserves the credit for that.

On what he would like to see from David Pastrnak when he returns…
Well I’m not going to talk about [David] Pastrnak until he gets here. And when he gets here maybe I’ll tell you what I need from him. But right now I’m going to focus on what I have and not worry about what may or may not happen down the road. 

On what he thinks of Alexander Ovechkin and how he’s been able to play well for so long…
Well I think Ovi [Alexander Ovechkin] in my mind has always been a great player, and he still is a great player. What I see, again from the outside, is how he’s really, really bought into the team concept where he’s been a real good leader, he’s doing things we maybe didn’t see him do earlier in his career. And you know I think Barry [Trotz] has done a great job of grabbing all of those guys and turning them into a real team and it shows. And I think that’s why, to me, I probably label them as probably one of the best if not the best team in the league right now.

On Jarome Iginla scoring his 600th goal last night…
I’m happy for Jarome because, you know, even if he was only here for a year he’s a great person and he’s been a great player in this league. And you know he deserves that recognition. He deserves to be able to reach those kinds of things. He’s a team guy, he’s a warrior, and you know there are a lot of good things to say about Jarome. And it’s unfortunate at that time we weren’t able to keep him around, but he was a good fit here and I think he enjoyed it here as well. But the situation of the cap and everything else has made this league that you lose players that you would love to keep but can’t. So I’m happy for him on a personal note. He’s deserving of it and I can’t say anything more than just being proud of him.

BOSTON BRUINS GENERAL MANAGER DON SWEENEY MEDIA AVAILABILITY AT 11:45 A.M.
On the decision to assign David Pastrnak to Providence…
Really, the only decision was he didn’t arrive until yesterday afternoon. Had him checked out, and he’ll skate today, and we’ll reevaluate. Really, it’s a matter of we play tonight, and Joonas [Kemppainen], in all likelihood, will come off IR, so our roster is what it is at this point in time, and we’ll make a decision going forward. And David [Pastrnak] will be part of that process.

On the way Brad Marchand’s suspension has complicated roster decisions…
It’s complicated it from the get-go, there’s no question. It doesn’t allow for roster flexibility because he takes up a spot, and you have to deal with it. Nobody’s happy about it, but you have to deal with it, and we’ll do so accordingly.

On David Pastrnak’s finger…
No, he can play through it. He played through it for the vast majority of the tournament. Our doctors just went back over it yesterday, and it shouldn’t be a problem going forward for him.

On the expectations for David Pastrnak’s stint, however long, in Providence…
Yeah, I think in all honesty it would have been unfair, missing seven weeks of hockey, to set expectations on him as a 19-year-old kid, to come in and jump back into our lineup and the intention was to get him back — he played a couple games before he went over — to knock off some rust, and go and play at a really high level tournament, which he utilized last year to jumpstart his second part of the year, and did impact our lineup. So that’s what our hopes are — that he’ll come back and feel more comfortable, having handled the puck in an environment over there even more so than it would have been at the AHL level, and certainly, if he had jumped back into NHL games. So we’re hopeful that he has his confidence back up, and he can come back and provide a boost for us in the second half.

On when David Pastrnak will be reevaluated…
I’m going to reevaluate after tonight’s game. Again, a lot of it’s performance based, where our own roster here is, and then Brad [Marchand] comes back for the Ottawa game — he’ll miss one more — so we’re just sort of looking to see where our club is, first and foremost, and David will factor into that going forward.

On his opinion on whether it is better for a young player to develop in the American League or the NHL…
I think it’s case by case. I think every player will dictate what his own trajectory is to play in the National Hockey League. And David was on a course last year that he was able to handle the American League at a young age, and went off to play in the World Junior, came back and parlayed his second half into being pretty successful. Did he have the best of starts? No. But the unfortunate part of it is, he got injured and was out for an extended period of time. But I think every player, as I said — young, doesn’t matter — their own trajectory will be dictated by their own performance. I’m not going to rush a player, and despite criticism for Pastrnak going over to World Juniors, I felt it was the right decision for him individually, first and foremost. And that’s what you have to look at. Every young player, you have to look at as an individual basis, and then you have to look at what’s best for the organization.

On David Pastrnak’s tournament at World Juniors…
It was good. I think his team, obviously, was disappointed in the final result, and not being able to get by, but I think he went over to play a lot of hockey, and was able to do so. He got his confidence back up, he had a goal and three assists in the games he played, they obviously would like to have scored a few more goals, but he’s played in situations that I think will help him and allow his confidence to get back to where it was even prior to his own injury here.

On where David Pastrnak will skate today…
No, he’s in Providence. He’s officially assigned to Providence and skating there this morning, and then we’re going to reevaluate after tonight’s game, and based on our own roster and based on where he’s at, how he feels.

On David Pastrnak’s stint in Providence before World Juniors…
It was OK. Again, being out for seven weeks, I think it was healthy for him to go down and play, in that environment, first and foremost, before coming back and being in the NHL lineup. It was just a long time for anybody, let alone a 19-year-old, to come back and feel comfortable. So I think it was good for him to get a couple of games, and get kind of his legs under him before… I mean, it’s a long time without conditioning and playing in battle situations, and so I think it was a good exercise for him, and he was able to go over there and play a bunch of games as well.

On whether another roster move is required to activate Joonas Kemppainen…
No. We have a spot for Joonas [Kemppainen].
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