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Training Camp Press Conference Transcript from Head Coach Claude Julien on 9/11

by Staff Writer / Boston Bruins
BOSTON BRUINS 


CLAUDE JULIEN PRESS CONFERENCE

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

BOSTON BRUINS HEAD COACH CLAUDE JULIEN
On spots open, and how that feels as a coach...
I think it's important every once and a while to get some fresh faces in and continue to create that excitement of being competitive and wanting to win every year. Things can get stale after a while, that's a known fact. And I think what we've done right now is kept our core together; we got some great leaders, a great core group of guys and we've added some quality people in there too. But also we've left room for some guys to come in and win themselves a spot.

On whether this season is about a fresh start or about unfinished business…
It's got to be a fresh start. I think when you win the Cup you got to turn the page and say we got to do it all over again. That doesn't change when you lose in the finals, I think we have to turn the page and create ourselves another opportunity here. So you can’t sit and dwell on what happened at the end of the year. If anything you should take what was positive about it, and I think our play was very good at the end, and you got to hopefully bring that at the beginning of the year.

On Patrice Bergeron and Gregory Campbell's level of participation during camp...

They're going to practice with us, they're going to be on the ice and when it comes time to play those exhibition games, it'll be a conversation again with our trainers in making sure if they're going to play that there's not a risk factor. Right now I would tell you that they would not be cleared to play a game if we started today but that might change in the upcoming days or in a week from now.

On if Patrice Bergeron and Gregory Campbell can take contact at practice…

They can practice with the team, it's just about playing in the exhibition game.

On preparation before first exhibition game in camp...

You got some new faces coming in and you got some others that are going to try and get into our lineup so we have to make sure that everybody's on the same page. Not only that but every year we kind of tweak little things here and there so it’s important for guys that have been around to be attentive to those details and make sure we start off on the right foot here. So there’s going to obviously be some drills that just give the guys an opportunity to find their hands, their legs, everything else, obviously the chemistry with others. And another part of the practice will be dedicated to some of those adjustments and tweaks that we expect to do along the way here.

On how hard Dougie Hamilton worked in the offseason, and what the expectations are for…

I think he did everything he had to last year when he came. I hope people don’t read into how it finished as a negative because I thought he had a real good year. There’s no doubt that his play tapered off a little bit at the end and that could have been a factor of fatigue. We all know he played in World Juniors, whatever it was called, at the beginning of the season, played a ton with his Junior team so I think the season caught up with him a little bit. This year he’s come back stronger, obviously more confident in knowing exactly what’s expected of him and how he fits in our hockey club and I think he’s a lot more comfortable and I think that’s going to play definitely to his advantage.

On specific points of emphasis going into camp…

I think just when we talk about system-wise we thought we could improve our gap, I think we can be a little tighter and those are things we’re going to be working on and making sure that’s at the top of our list. I thought that was one of the things that we could do better and when we did it well it gave us success but we didn’t do it on a consistent basis so that’s one of the things we’re going to be tweaking. It’s a bunch of little things, it’s minor maybe to you guys but to me it’ll make some big difference in games, some of the things that we’re going to be working on.

On benefits of full camp for Krug and Soderberg…

For Carl [Soderberg] it was hard for him to come in, and especially at the stage of the season we were in, at the time we were battling for a top spot. He didn’t get much of a chance to get used to the North American game. I think he got a pretty good taste of it playing a little bit of it and watching. He’s going to have an opportunity here in some of these exhibitions games to time himself even better, or fine tune himself would probably be the better word. As far as [Torey] Krug is concerned he’s played some games in playoffs that were as intense as you could ever find so I don’t think training camp is going to worry him as much as it’s going to probably help him get off to a good start.

On the id added leadership in the locker room will help…
Absolutely and I say it often, you don’t need a letter to be a leader. And there are a lot more leaders in that locker room than you see with letters on their jerseys. When it comes time to meeting with players as a core group, there are more than just a captain and three assistants, which we had last year, there are a lot more than that So, the same goes for, as you said, Loui [Eriksson] and obviously Iggy [Jarome Iginla] being a captain for so many years. I’m sure when you get to a certain stage in your career, you don’t really care about that. It might excite certain players; other players don’t care. It doesn’t stop them from doing their jobs.

On how self motivated the team is…
I don’t think I’m going to need camp to really assess it, I feel it right now. I think our group s in the right place, I said that the other day at the golf tournament. I like the feeling of our hockey cub right now, these tests today just kind of solidified what I thought. Guys are in great shape and it would have been easier for guys after finishing so late to just kind of shut it down for the summer but they’ve kept themselves in great shape and they look excited to get off to a new start here.

On if everyone passed the physical tests today…
Yeah, no disappointments, no surprises. That’s what I mean; it was all great news for a coach to see that these guys are ready to go.

On if he knows what he wants the third line to be…
I think ideally we saw the third line that we’ve liked when we wont the cup. You know, we had [Chris] Kelly, we had [Rich] Peverley, we had [Michael] Ryder. Not only were they kind of a dependable line but they were able to give us some scoring. In the real perfect world, you’ve got your top two lines and you’d like to see them score on a regular basis. Your third line should be able to give you some secondary scoring and then your third line should also be able to give you some secondary grit that the fourth line gives you. So they're kind of, to me, caught in the middle where they give you a little bit of both and that is what we are looking for from that line. We need more than just two lines to score. We know our fourth line has given us that but our third line needs to give us that as well and at the same time, defensively and on the gritty side of the game they got to be able to give us that too.

On his advice to the young guys competing for the spot on the third line…
Take it. Take advantage of it. We’ve been clear, and it hasn’t just come from me, Peter [Chiarelli] is the one who has kind of came out and said listen we’re going to bring some youth into our line up so if some guys want a spot on this hockey club, here is a good opportunity to do that right now. And it’s open. I think we’ve got some guys on Providence last year that deserve that look, we’ve got some guys who we got in some trades that are going to certainly be battling for those spots as well.

On how eager he is to see certain players he hasn’t really seen before…
Well, and that’s just a few of them, there’s more than that who were on Providence last year. There’s no doubt you like to see the progression of those Providence guys. We didn’t get a chance to see them last year, most of them, because of the short camp. But we got a chance to see them enough in the first half playing in Providence so it will be nice to see how well they fit in with our group. I saw them obviously in Florida as well, a lot of them. With those new guys, it just gives you an opportunity to see them, I guess get a closer look. Especially in practice, you're on the ice with them and you can see the little things that they do well and get a better idea of what they can bring to the table when it comes times to make those decisions.

On if he is going to be on his best behavior now that the NESN cameras are going to be there…
The last thing you want to do it change your style because the players will notice. I’m going to be myself so there will be very few curse words, and I will be speaking the same way I normally do. So I could be like Whitey [John Whitesides], there might be a lot of beeps at times.

On how the players will adjust to the cameras being there…
Well, I’m not going to lie, it does represent a bit of a challenge because we’re not used to having cameras everywhere following us. So there’s an adjustment there but what’s important is to know and to trust that those people will do the right thing when it comes down to showing those things on T.V. for our fans. As a coach as I mentioned, if I go in there and I’m different, the players will read through that right away and I can’t do that. So I’m going to be myself, I think the players have to be themselves, they have to feel comfortable but there’s no doubt it’s going to be a bit of an adjustment at first until we get used to it a little bit more.

On how much consideration he has to give Zdeno Chara now that it is a full season…
Well, I don’t know if I’m going to call it pull back the reins, but you're right. I think he’s always in great shape so that is never an issue. I think right now what we have to do in order for our team to progress too is start putting more trust in other players too. Give the more responsibilities and that’s the way we’re going to get better. And what that will allow is other players to grow in those roles but it will also allow Zdeno [Chara] to be better. Because if he plays a little less, he is going to give us more. So that is kind of he small adjustment, that doesn’t mean he’s going to go from 24 minutes to 19, but there’s going to be games where you might see him get as much ice time but we’re certainly going to keep an eye on that for him, guys like Dennis Seidenberg. We feel we got some good players that have developed well, whether it’s a Johnny Boychuk, McQuaids [Adam McQuaid], just to name a few, that can step in there and take more ice time, more responsibilities.
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