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The Countdown Continues

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
12:53 p.m.

In terms of excitement level about the upcoming season, new Bruins defenseman Derek Morris might take the trophy.

"It's definitely the highest I've had," said Morris. "Obviously, I think your first game pro, you might be more nervous than excited.

"I don't have a whole lot of nerves, but I'm excited because I see we have a great team here and a great opportunity.

"Being older, you realize that there's not many opportunities like that."

Beyond his new teammates, Morris said that the Bruins coaching staff and head coach Claude Julien has created a certain level of expectation around the club.

"He is creating an atmosphere where you can't cheat in practice," said Morris. "If you make a mistake in practice he lets you know.

"So, you're constantly thinking about it, which is good, so it's just going to come [easier] with we go on.

"He's harping on little things in his system that are very important. Not big issues, just little tiny tweaks...that we have in our system that are going to be effective in a game," he said.

Morris also said that there is a good chance that if Coach Julien isn't chirping about an issue, a teammate might call you out instead.

"There is a good chance [of that] -- it's called accountability," explained Morris. "That's what these guys are calling upon.

"They want accountability all the time. You know? And if you are not accountable to your teammates, your teammates can't trust you on the ice.

"Guys in here hold each other accountable, yes," he said, definitively.

As a result, each person in the B's locker room knows that they have to hold themselves accountable, as well.

"Everybody is going to have bad games," said Morris. "But you have to [minimize] or tweak your your bad games. If you are having a bad game you have to simplify your game [particularly] as a defenseman.

"When you're starting to battle the puck a little bit, and your legs don't feel good you just have to simplify your game."

Although, Morris said with a smile, on opening night, "You shouldn't have to."

Laughter. A beat, then he repeated, "You shouldn't have to."

11:23 a.m.

The Bruins hit the ice at 10:30 a.m. with the same lineup they sported in the Garden on Monday morning. Special teams rule the day here at Ristuccia.
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