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Pastrnak focused on season, not contract with Bruins

Restricted free agent forward expects 'bright future' with Boston

by Tim Campbell @TimNHL / Staff Writer

STOCKHOLM -- Boston Bruins forward David Pastrnak remains a restricted free agent and doesn't know when he will sign a contract, but that hasn't distracted him from his offseason training program.

"I'm just waiting, leaving it all to my agent [J.P. Barry] to communicate with them," Pastrnak, 21, said during the European Player Media Tour on Thursday. "I'm just focusing on getting ready for next season.

"I'm focusing on getting better and I'm trying not to think about that stuff. I just let it go and something will happen."

Pastrnak is coming off a breakout season; his production increased from 26 points (15 goals, 11 assists) in 51 games in 2015-16 to 70 (34 goals, 36 assists) in 75 games last season. Just like Pastrnak, the Bruins would like him signed before training camp opens in September.

At Bruins development camp last month, general manager Don Sweeney said he had met with Pastrnak's representatives and was hopeful of a resolution, but there was no time frame.


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Pastrnak emerged as one of 26 NHL players who scored 30 or more goals last season. He credited his offensive production to an increase in playing time and being placed in situations where he could thrive.

"It was my third year last year, so some experience obviously helped me," Pastrnak said. "Plus, I definitely got more ice time and I played the first power play. The two previous years, I didn't play the power play at all, a few shifts maybe, but not on a standard unit.

"The power play isn't just about you scoring; it's that you get the puck and you get confidence with the puck on your stick and that helps you, even during the rest of the game. You get a feeling for the game and confidence and it comes into the 5-on-5 game."

Pastrnak's training regimen has evolved into a full-time effort each week during the offseason. He also spends time playing other sports besides hockey.

"You try to get better every summer, working hard in the summer," he said. "I gained a little bit of weight and muscle. I looked out for my body and ate well, and then usually on the weekend I just turned it off and didn't think about hockey at all and ate whatever I needed. That helped me. And I play a lot of different sports: tennis, soccer and in a league in Czech Republic, it's like ball hockey, with the orange ball. I do that a lot."

Video: TBL@BOS: Pastrnak opens the scoring with PPG

When his contract situation is resolved, Pastrnak, the No. 25 pick in the 2014 NHL Draft, said he's looking forward to building on what he accomplished last season, and continuing to experience all there is to playing for the Bruins.

"The guys are great," he said. "The city is great. The fans are great. I like the arena. The city is full of good restaurants and young people.

"It's a club with a big history, so for me it was special coming there. It has a bright future because it has a bright history. There are many guys around there who have been in the League a long time and you learn from them every day." 

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