The 24 rookies have concluded their first day of fitness testing and on-ice activities.
“What I told them last night — we had a little introductory meeting — was that development camp was orientation, getting to know our philosophies, the way we approach things here as part of the Bruins,” GM Peter Chiarelli said. “This is business now. This is making teams. This is showing your wares. We’re ramping up the competition level. You want to put them on edge a little bit. This is how you get better.”
The rookies will have two more practices prior to their game against the Islanders on Wednesday at TD Garden, with a rematch on Thursday. The Bruins have sold more than 7,000 tickets ($5 apiece) for each game.
* Tyler Seguin had some chemistry centering Jamie Arniel and Jared Knight. Arniel, a former junior teammate of Steven Stamkos, said Seguin is the exact same player as the current Tampa Bay star. “The way they skate, carry the puck, and shoot it, it’s kind of freaky how identical they are,” Arniel said. “The first year I saw [Seguin] play in the OHL, I actually noticed that a bit too. They were very similar. Boston should definitely be very excited.”
* Knight buried several top-shelf snipes, but he also showed no hesitation in driving to the net. Knight is most likely ticketed for a return to the OHL, where he could be under late consideration for the US world junior team. Knight was not invited to Team USA’s camp in August, a snub he explained was most likely a result of him choosing major junior over the National Team Development Program and the University of Michigan.
* This sounds like absolute heresy, but there are some comparables between Yury Alexandrov and Nicklas Lidstrom. Alexandrov isn’t big and isn’t the most natural skater (Chiarelli said while he’s improving, he’s not in the shape he should be in). But Alexandrov has an excellent stick, positions himself well, and thinks the game clearly.
* Arniel will be an interesting player to watch this season. Arniel had no problems keeping up with the speed of Seguin and Knight. Didn’t look out of place skillwise either. But he’s got some jam and savvy to his game that could also make him better suited to a bottom-six role as a pro. Chiarelli said he’d like to evaluate Arniel for a full season before he determines how he ultimately projects as an NHLer. Right now, I’d peg him somewhere in the six-to-nine category — enough skill for the second line, but maybe more valuable as a third-line energy forward.
* Neat to see how much Max Sauve has developed physically since he was drafted in 2008. He looked like a boy then. Now, the left wing has some meat and muscle on his frame. There’s more power behind his stride, too.
* There’s an effective simplicity to Ryan Donald’s game. Nothing fancy or flashy. But as a stay-at-home defenseman, there’s something about Donald that reminds me of Adam McQuaid as a player who knows and understands his strengths and weaknesses.