With training camp for the Bruins set to open up later this afternoon, here’s a look at seven things to keep tabs on as Boston gears up for the 2019-20 season:
Are the Bruins bracing themselves for a Cup ‘hangover?’
159 days. 3,816 hours. Over 13,000,000 seconds.
Whichever way you want to put it, this offseason has dragged on for just about every club in the NHL, but especially for the 15 franchises that didn’t punch their ticket to the Stanley Cup Playoffs last season.
For clubs like the Canadiens, Rangers and more, those 159 days off — amounting to more than five months — represent an extended timeframe to both refocus and reset in anticipation of a brighter future in 2019-20.
The Bruins have those same lofty goals this season — with both the personnel and talent to back it up. But their extended postseason all the way to Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final means that Bruce Cassidy’s club was not afforded quite the same window when it came to rest and recovery this summer.
It’s only been 92 days — or three months to the day — since the Bruins' season ended in such a crushing fashion on June 12 at TD Garden.
And while the Blues are tasked with defending their Cup title and dealing with the “hangover” that follows after a summer filled with celebration, Boston is very much behind the eight ball as well — without any of the perks that come with winning a championship.
That loss on home ice will be fresh in the minds of many in the Bruins locker room once camp opens, and yet, while the sting of that defeat may not subside for years and years — Cassidy’s first task this camp will be to get his club focused on the task at hand: The 2019-20 season.
“I have not been through it,” Cassidy said Monday of a Stanley Cup hangover. “So that’s why, again, talking to the veteran guys, it will be good to get their feedback on what they feel should be the approach. I hope we’re not talking about it after Day 1 (of camp). It’s done. It’s over. We’ve got a few new players. It’s not the same team. It’s a new year.
“We’ve got to be ready to be at our best going into the season — Game 1 against Dallas and then on to Arizona, that type of thing. I hope we don’t have a hangover. I certainly don’t intend on having one. Again, I don’t want to talk about it after the next four, five days. It was a good year, we fell one game short. Now we’ve got to work on getting back to that position and not falling one game short.”
How will Cassidy and Bruins tinker with training camp?
With such a short summer, Cassidy was quick to note that training camp at Warrior Ice Arena will be a bit different than in years past.