Boston, MA --
Late last week, as the B’s were preparing to re-sign Shawn Thornton
and Dennis Seidenberg
, Milan Lucic
was in the Garden and did something that few people around Causeway Street have seen him do in a long time.
|Boston Bruins left wing Milan Lucic (17) is congratulated by teammates after his third-period goal against the Philadelphia Flyers in Game 2 of a second-round NHL playoff hockey series in Boston, Monday, May 3, 2010. The Bruins won 3-2. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa) |
"I feel better now," said Lucic while visiting the B’s offices. "Being able to stay off [the injured leg] for this long has been good and I can tell that it feels better.
"It’s been good," said Lucic of his break. "I went to the Bahamas for a week - which was a nice, little vacation to get away from everything and obviously with the disappointment and all it was good...and it’s nice to get away and have some down time."
Ah yes, the disappointment.
It seems that not a day goes by that doesn't include some reminder of the B's departure from the playoffs. Lucic, for one, isn't shy about using the word "redemption" when he talks about the 2010-11 season -- and he's not just talking about the playoff loss to Philly, either.
Lucic made it clear that beyond team pride, his own pride was hurt, too.
"Yeah the season was full of ups and downs and it wasn’t really consistent season compared to the one that we had the year before so I think everyone’s looking forward to getting that back and tot those types of things we had as a team that year," said Lucic. "That’s mainly what I've thought of.
"For myself, obviously missing 35 games is no fun thing and it’s something I never want to do again.
"That’s mainly what I mean when I say redemption," he said.
When asked how the fan reaction has been this summer, Lucic made it clear that he admires the fans' passion.
"Yeah definitely. I think it’s much better that they care as much as they do I mean it show that they have a lot of passion for the team and they want us to succeed," said the left wing. "Obviously, all the fans are disappointed as I am but it seems like ever since I’ve been back walking around the street you know everyone has been saying 'You’ve gotten got a lot farther then we thought we were going to get looking back in January,' when we had a ten game losing streak.
"But they thought we played hard and they kept telling me that I should be proud of the way I played. It’s nice to hear things like that when you’re walking down the
Again, Lucic flashed a big smile and said that the R&R will continue for a little bit longer -- but just a little bit.
"This is obviously an important summer for me...trying to redeem myself after the year I had," said Lucic, who was no longer smiling.
"I have to try and keep things healthy so just working really hard in the gym.
"I think when I was doing power skating...for two weeks when I hurt my finger and I was still able to skate. I think that helped me out a lot so I think I’m going to continue on with doing some power skating this summer and to improve my speed -- you can never get too fast -- and just work on those things just maintaining my strength and working on my shots so when the season starts I have no excuse of having false start.
"So, yeah another week vacation, and then I’ll come back and start working out," continued Lucic. "I’ll be sticking around Boston for pretty much the whole summer and working out with the [Strength and Conditioning Coach John] Whitesides."