GM Peter Chiarelli has concluded a conference call regarding the first round against Montreal and the 2010-11 regular season.
“I think it will be a very good series,” Chiarelli said. “It’s two contrasting styles of play. We’re straight-line, forecheck, heavy on the puck. They’re fast, quick transition, good shooters. It really will be a good series. I’m looking forward to it. I know the team is looking forward to it.”
Last year, Chiarelli’s charges got past Buffalo, the No. 3 seed, in the first round. They held a 3-0 series lead over Philadelphia in the second round, but gagged away the opportunity to advance to the third round.
“We entered this year coming off that disappointing end against Philadelphia,” Chiarelli said when asked what would be a successful season. “That’s been an underlying theme of the year — to be able to respond and be able to build from that. The obvious answer is to get past the second round. But it’s more than that. It’s about how we play, how we compete. There are a lot of variables that go into a playoff run. I expect us to have a successful run.”
* As expected, Tyler Seguin will most likely start Round 1 as a healthy scratch. “I’m relatively satisfied with his development,” said Chiarelli. “You have to put it in context with his age. You have to put it in context that he’s an individual who’s seen that he has to grow in certain areas on and off the ice. He’s a real good kid. My guess is that he won’t start in the lineup for the playoffs. I hope he finds his way into it. The play is going to ramp up in the playoffs. Had he gone back to junior, the areas where he had to better at would have been left dormant. He had to play this year and face those areas head on.”
* Steven Kampfer injured his knee in Providence last weekend. Chiarelli said Kampfer is out at least two weeks. Kampfer would have been the No. 8 defenseman. Shane Hnidy will be first in if injuries strike. Chiarelli mentioned Matt Bartkowski, Andrew Bodnarchuk, and Colby Cohen as additional fill-in candidates after Hnidy.
* Anton Khudobin will serve as the No. 3 goalie behind Tim Thomas and Tuukka Rask.