What was going through 19-year-old Dougie Hamilton's head when the Garden crowd was chanting his name against the Islanders?
"I don't know." chuckled Hamilton. "Just trying not to fumble the puck when I was going back there for it."
After getting a few NHL games under his belt, Hamilton is still still excited to be on the NHL roster.
"I don't know if it has really sunk in that I'm playing in the NHL." continued Hamilton. "It feels so weird being out there instead of being a kid watching, and dreaming about it."
Brad Marchand signs an 8-year extension with the Boston Bruins after scoring 37 goals last season
BRIGHTON -- The Bruins aren’t going to have anything resembling an All-Star lineup when they take the ice against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Monday night at TD Garden for their preseason opener. But they'll take a long, lingering look at their future with a game-night roster full of prospects and young players who still get butterflies at the thought of putting on an NHL sweater for an Original Six club.
Jake DeBrusk, Danton Heinen, Jakub Zboril, Robbie O’Gara, Peter Cehlarik and Brandon Carlo are among the top B’s youngsters that will be in the lineup, and will be cranking up the energy prior to puck drop against the Blue Jackets.
“Everybody is really excited. I woke up this morning with a big smile on my face knowing that I get to put the B’s jersey on and get to go out [on the ice] at TD Garden,” said Brandon Carlo, who will be paired with John-Michael Liles as he has been throughout the start of training camp. “I probably won’t have much of a nap today because I’m so amped up.
“I feel like I’m moving my feet out there, and I want to show that I’ve gotten better at things I worked on over the summer like moving the puck. I definitely want to show a little bit of physicality out there as well.”
The young players are the ones who also provide the most unknown variable for the coaching staff at this point. So the first preseason game is largely about how those hopefuls respond to faster, more physical and intense competition.
“You’re looking to see effort and energy tonight. If the effort and energy is there everything else will take care of itself,” said assistant coach Joe Sacco. “You don’t really want them to think too much out there tonight. This is a game where players are trying to showcase their talent, and we want them to do that.”
Sacco said Anton Khudobin will play the first two periods and Zane McIntyre will wrap things up. Here are the line combos and D-pairings expected to take the ice against the Blue Jackets: