The Boston Bruins opened their week of training camp with a special free show on Jan. 13 at TD Garden before moving to the familiar confines of Ristuccia Memorial Arena the next day.
Most of the forward lines remain pretty intact from last season. There’s still a line of Milan Lucic-David Krejci-Nathan Horton, still the Tyler Seguin-Patrice Bergeron-Brad Marchand line and, of course, still the Merlot Line of Shawn Thornton-Gregory Campbell-Daniel Paille.
A new third line is taking shape: Chris Kelly is still at center, Rich Peverley is on the right wing and a newcomer, Chris Bourque, is on the left wing. Bourque is wearing the number 48 at camp. I think it would be a funnier sight gag if he wore number 78, one number after his father Ray’s 77, but it’s still good to see him on the third line. His scoring touch would serve them very well.
Other unfamiliar numbers getting a look at camp include Jay Pandolfo at 29, Aaron Johnson at 45, Ryan Spooner at 51, Dougie Hamilton at 53, Jamie Tardif at 68 and David Warsofsky at 79. A total of six Providence Bruins are at camp.
Pandolfo, Lane MacDermid, Spooner and Tardif often form a sort of fluid fifth line together as the big guys evaluate their performance.
On defense, the pairings look like this: Johnny Boychuk with Zdeno Chara, Dennis Seidenberg with Hamilton, Adam McQuaid with Andrew Ference and Warsofsky with Johnson. Now that McQuaid has been medically cleared to play in the season opener, there’s really only one top-six spot to fill and I still think it’s going to go to Hamilton. The seventh defenseman spot is still up for grabs, though.
Training camp week continues tomorrow with a morning session at TD Garden that is not open to the public. Tomorrow night, though, the Garden hosts a free intersquad scrimmage at 7 p.m. Every single ticket to the scrimmage has already been distributed. Then, 10 a.m. practices at Ristuccia continue each day through Saturday, when the Bruins open their season.