Cole Harbour, NS -- Matt Marquardt is returning to Moncton, and he couldn’t be happier.
Now in training camp with the Bruins, Marquardt is looking forward to returning to the place where he got his start.
“I played juniors there for almost three seasons,” said the former Wildcat from outside the Bruins locker room at Cole Harbour Place. “It’s my second home.
“That was my first major junior team and I stayed there for two and a half years, won a championship there, went to the Memorial Cup there, so it’s very special for me to get to go back and play in this game.”
Marquardt explained that he had some unfinished business in New Brunswick.
“Being traded at Christmastime and not having the chance to say, ‘Bye’ and stuff like that to billet families and friends, it’s going to be great to get back there and get to play another game at the Moncton Coliseum.
“I am really great to get back there and play another game, so I am glad to be in the lineup.”
Not to mention the fact that this will be Marquardt's first NHL exhibition game.
“I just have to stick to the game plan and keep things simple,” said Matt. “You can’t grip the stick too tight or be nervous.
“I just have to go out there and use my size and play to my strengths.”
Marquardt believes that you can’t try and do too much.
“You can’t go out there and go out of your way to do something out of your comfort zone, so I am going to keep it simple and just do the things that they tell me I do well,” he said.
The Bruins think that Marquardt does a lot of things well.
“If you are going to talk about someone who’s been a pleasant surprise, it’s been Matt Marquardt,” said Bruins head coach Claude Julien following Tuesday morning’s skate.
“First of all, he’s one of those guys who came into camp in extremely good shape and he’s made some immense progress since the development camp. He’s got unbelievable hands, he can shoot the puck and he’s got good size.
“He competes and he battles hard,” continued Julien. “We need him to work on his skating a little bit, and (get) some quick feet, and if he can improve that he’s going to play in the NHL.”
Marquardt is ready for the challenge.
“Those are the things I have to do in order to make a good impression,” he said. “In a game like this, an NHL exhibition game, everybody is trying to make an impression and everybody is trying to get a job.
“I’m not too much of a nervous guy, it’s more excitement, than anything.
‘This is my fourth camp, but it is my first NHL exhibition, though – I played a bunch of rookie games and played a bunch of tournament games –but this is my first big one.”