But there was one new face at Ristuccia Arena that had the team excited – and that was goaltender Marty Turco
, who cleared waivers and was able to join the Bruins for yesterday’s skate.
Turco, a 10-year veteran goaltender, joined the B’s after playing with the Red Bulls of Salzburg in Austria.
“He hasn’t been on the ice in a while, but I thought his intensity – his enthusiasm was there and I didn’t mind that,” Head Coach Claude Julien said. “You could see he was working hard at feeling that puck and getting his timing and everything else, which is exactly what you’d expect from a goaltender that’s practicing for the first time in a while.
“The shots he’s taking in Europe, and the shots he’s taking here are a little bit different maybe and the league he played in, but we know how good of a goaltender he’s been through the league.”
Before Tuesday’s game with the Toronto Maple Leafs, General Manager Peter Chiarelli said he believe there was a ‘50-50 chance’ Turco would clear waivers.
As the noon deadline approached and passed, it was a sigh of relief that Turco would be joining the Bruins and serve as a back up while Tuukka Rask
recovers from a lower abdominal and groin strain. With Rask out for 4-6 weeks, there was no NHL-ready backup for Tim Thomas
, considering Providence goaltender Anton Khudobin
, who was next in line, is also injured.
“I think we wanted him here, and second thing is he wanted to be here,” Julien said of Turco. “So, you hope it was going to work out. When you run into that type of injury Tuukka went through after the trade deadline, and then your number one goaltender in Providence is injured at this moment, to be able to get a guy like him is certainly a bonus.
“So, I think we’re all happy once noon came around and he was still with us.”
Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara
, who’s played a handful of games against Turco throughout his career, was also happy to have a player of Turco’s caliber on his team.
“We know what he can do and how he’s established himself in this league as one of the top goalies, and I can see in his eyes that he’s excited and I can tell we’re even more excited to have him,” Chara said. “You don’t find that many chances to bring people and players like that to your team with the qualities he can bring, so we’re very, very happy to have him.” Julien: Ference and Paille doubtful for tomorrow
Before Thursday’s practice, Bruins defenseman Andrew Ferrence and forward Daniel Paille
took the ice on their own at Ristuccia Arena around 11:15.
However, Julien made it clear that it is likely they will not be available for today’s game against the Buffalo Sabres.
“Well they skated for the first time today on their own, so that’s a good sign,” Julien said. “They’re still day-to-day, which I would say doubtful for [today] unless something miraculous happens in the next 24 hours. But they’re obviously getting better, and we don’t anticipate them being out for too long.”
Also absent from the Bruins practice was forward Benoit Pouliot
, who left last night’s game after suffering an undisclosed injury.
“He’s day-to-day,” Julien said. “We kept him off the ice [yesterday] again, more of [a] precaution, and we’ll see how he feels [today] and make a decision whether he’s feeling good, better or whether he can go or not.”
Julien acknowledges that the Bruins, who are also still without Nathan Horton
and Rich Peverley
, aren’t the same team as they are when healthy, but he is happy with the effort he has seen lately.
“I think our work ethic has gone up a few notches and now we’re starting to be the hard working team that we used to be, and those things are starting to happen,” Julien said. “I don’t think fans got used to us running away with games early in the season when everybody was healthy and we were on all cylinders, but I think right now it’s just about getting some consistency.
“And [to] go from there – make sure our work ethic is where it should be to be a hard team to play against.” --- Anthony Gulizia