Bruins camp kicks off
On a mild January day, overcast, somewhat wet, the Boston Bruins opened their 2013 training camp.
It seemed less a camp, less an exercise, less an event, than a collective exhaling by the players, the coaching staff, and the fans in attendance today at TD Garden. The fans ranged from old timers to children, hipsters to die-hards. There were probably a few thousand filling the lower bowl. The Bruins did a first-class job–free hot dogs, sodas and popcorn for all, plus a 30-foot dessert spread that was being constantly replenished. Sure, all the tortes, cakes, macaroons and crumpets in the world couldn’t erase the heartache of the past four months for hockey fans. But it was a gesture, an apology, and a thank you. It felt like it counted for something in an arena where a beer will run you $9 and an ice cream $7.75. Cam Neely even appeared for good measure and shook hands and signed autographs.
But how about that on-ice product? The timing and speed were lacking, but the energy certainly wasn’t. The green and grey-shirted borderliners (Bourque, Spooner et al.) had the most pop. Mostly likely owing to the most regular AHL playing-time, but their own motivation too. Tuukka looked sharp. Dougie Hamilton appeared as much the nervous rookie as you’d expect, staying on the ice the longest. He looked to be highly observant, longing to become one of the group. Among forwards, Seguin stood head and shoulders above the rest in terms of speed and hands. He will be a terror this season.
Let this season begin.