BOSTON — The Bruins held their breakup day Monday, giving reporters one last chance to speak with players before they departed for the offseason.
There was a lot to unpack from the two-hour media session, so let’s dive right into some assorted news and notes.
— Winger Brad Marchand announced he will compete for Team Canada in the IIHF World Championship, which will be held next month in Russia.
Marchand, who has not played for his home nation since the 2008 World Junior Championships, racked up a career-high 37 goals this season, ranking sixth in the NHL in that category.
— Torey Krug, who’s set to become a restricted free agent July 1, said he and the Bruins have not discussed a contract extension.
“Right now, I’m a Boston Bruin, and I’d love to play here my whole life,” the 24-year-old defenseman said. “I haven’t really thought about that, to be honest. But I love the city. I live here now and want to be here for a long time.”
Krug finished second on the team with a career-high 40 assists this season, but he managed just four goals in 81 games with a brutal 1.60 shooting percentage.
— Wingers Brett Connolly and Jimmy Hayes, frequent absentees from the Bruins’ lineup down the stretch, both revealed they were dealing with late-season MCL sprains. Connolly said he would have been ready to play in Boston’s playoff opener had the team qualified for the postseason.
“One of those things where you’ve got to let it heal a little bit before you can get back in there,” said Connolly, another impending RFA. “But it was ready to go after that last game that we obviously lost against Ottawa. It’s all good now.”
Both forwards posted underwhelming numbers this season, with Connolly and Hayes finishing with nine and 13 goals, respectively.
— Trade-deadline acquisition Lee Stempniak said he’d like to return for a second season in Boston — his offseason home even before he joined the B’s — but only if the team has the desire to keep him.
“Certainly,” the veteran winger said. “I like it. We make our home here, so it’s a great city, and it’d be very convenient for my family. But it’d have to be mutual. I know management has a lot of decisions to make. There’s some free agents. If there was mutual interest, it’d certainly be a good fit and something I’d like to explore.”
Stempniak tallied three goals and seven assists in 19 games after being traded to the Bruins from the New Jersey Devils on Feb. 29.
— Center Ryan Spooner saw his production dwindle near the tail end of his first full NHL season, notching just one goal and four assists over his final 16 games.
The 24-year-old said he wasn’t nursing any particular injury over the last few weeks but said the grind of an 82-game season (he played in 80) did take its toll on his body.
“I just wasn’t playing well,” Spooner said. “There was a 35-game stretch there (from December to February) where I was playing a lot better and I was playing a lot more. I think I only had three or four goals (after) the All-Star break, which isn’t good enough. If I could go back, I wish I could play a lot better, but that’s in the past now.
“… In March, (I got) a little bit run down, you could say. But that’s something I need to get used to, and it’s definitely not an excuse. I’m in good enough shape.”
Spooner finished the season with 13 goals and 36 assists.
Thumbnail photo via Brad Rempel/USA TODAY Sports Images
Thumbnail photo via Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand
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