P-Bruins Camper working to make leap to NHL

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P-Bruins Camper working to make leap to NHL

MARLBOROUGH He ended last season as the leading scorer in Providence, and he potted a goal with the big club in Boston when injuries hit the Bs last season.

But Carter Camper isnt on the tongue tip of many Bs fans when it comes potential forwards pushing for jobs when the NHL resumes, or at the top of the list when it comes to top 10 lists of prospects. But Camper just keeps on scoring goals and getting himself into the right position to make things happen, and he did that again while firing home a power play goal in the P-Bruins 4-1 win over the Springfield Falcons during their preseason opener.

For Camper it was a nice start after focusing on getting a little better in all phases of the game after getting 3 NHL games under his belt last season.

It definitely felt good to play somebody other than my own teammates, said Camper, who put up 183 points in four excellent seasons skating at Miami University. You dont know when the NHL season is going to start, but when it does start I want to be at the top of my game. To get a taste last year was a motivator for me.

Being a little guy Im not the fastest skater, and I knew I had to get quicker. I like to make plays and have good vision, so these things just need to stay there. Its my offense thats going to get me to the next level to stay.

Camper isnt the biggest guy around at 5-foot-9 and 173 pounds, and would actually qualify as one of the smallest players on the ice on most nights. Hes not the fastest skater or blessed with the hardest shot either, but he just seems to get results. Camper connected with Alden Hirschfeld on a nifty pass from behind the net to score a goal in the P-Bruins first scrimmage last weekend, and on Wednesday night he crashed the net for the rebound of a David Warsofsky shot that turned into Providences second goal of the game.

Its exactly that kind of instinct and plain, simple production thats caught the eye of the Bs talent evaluators, and its the reason he ended up with 48 points (18 goals, 30 assists) in 69 games for the offense-challenged P-Bruins last season.

He was very good the second half of last year, and he looked like that again against Springfield, said Providence coach Bruce Cassidy. He was strong on the puck and frustrated guys on the other team that were whacking him while he was making plays.

He can still play in every situation. Its just a matter of him getting that step. When he plays up in the NHL hes just going to have to be a little bit quicker. I wouldnt bet against him. His whole life hes been fighting against physical attributes that other guys might have over him. I love his compete and his hockey IQ, and I hope another year down here working on leg strength will really benefit him.

With NHL experience and the confidence that goes along with it firmly in place, it looks early on this year like Camper is working toward making that next step that hes so looking forward to.

Heinen looking to show his offense in his shot on Krejci line

Heinen looking to show his offense in his shot on Krejci line

BRIGHTON, Mass – The Bruins mixed things up with their roster a bit on Saturday after dropping a couple of games in a row to Washington and Colorado. 

Fourth-line energy winger Noel Acciari and playmaking forward Danton Heinen were called up from Providence and will be in the lineup against the Toronto Maple Leafs at TD Garden on Saturday night. 
Acciari went to Providence the past couple of days to get some game action in after missing the past month with a lower body injury, but clearly showed he’s ready to go. 

So, Acciari is back to provide the same hard-hitting and energy he showed before he was hurt and Heinen is looking to show off a little more offense than in his first stint with the Black and Gold this season. He’ll be featured in a top role as left wing with David Krejci and David Backes and with marching orders to shoot the puck like he never shot it in his previous stint in Boston. 

For the Bruins, it’s about getting another look at a candidate to play left wing beside Krejci with both Ryan Spooner and Tim Schaller, with limitations to their respective games, unable to fully grasp that same opportunity. 

“My hope is that Heinen can come in and give us some good hockey. He’s a skill player and he’s been down there for a while, and he’s back up again because he’s been playing well,” said Claude Julien of the Bruins rookie, who had four goals and seven points in his past five games with Providence. “Hopefully he can play well here also. It’s about getting some confidence. When he went down to [the AHL] the pace of his game had to get a little bit better, and in the battles coming up with the puck along the walls. Those are the kinds of things we thought he could work on down in Providence.”

Heinen knows he needs to shoot the puck a bit more to show off his offense after a seven-game stint with the Bruins where he went scoreless, was a minus-2 and had just six shots on net.

“Being hard on the walls, playing fast and shooting the puck, those were all things I was working on [in Providence],” said Heinen, who has seven goals and 13 points in 13 games for the P-Bruins after being assigned to Providence. “I was doing what they told me to do [in Providence] and that’s shoot the puck. They were going in, and I was getting some good opportunities on the power play. It’s seriously tough to get chances [at the NHL level], so you can’t pass them up when you have chances. That was kind of my focus down there.”

Fellow fourth-line energy winger Anton Blidh has been shipped to Providence after three solid games with the Black and Gold. 

Julien said Blidh goes back to Providence having adequately shown that he can play in the NHL. He clearly showed the Bruins that he understands his role as a player that stirs things up a bit and gets his nose dirty on a regular basis.

“[Blidh] was fine. No issues there. He does his job. He plays with lots of energy and obviously he’s getting more experience. He’s a lot better at understanding his positioning within the game and what he has to do,” said Julien. “I thought he helped us out for the time that he was here.”

With Heinen and Acciari both in the lineup and Blidh back in Providence, that means Jimmy Hayes will be scratched after dressing for three of the past four games for Boston.

Saturday, Dec. 10: Vegas, scoring on NHL governors' minds

Saturday, Dec. 10: Vegas, scoring on NHL governors' minds

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while doing some early Christmas shopping ahead of the late rush. 

*Mike Zeisberger sits down with a quartet of NHL governors and discusses a number of hot topics including the Vegas franchise and scoring around the league. 

*Carolina Hurricanes owner Peter Karmanos has been removed from the NHL Board of Governor’s Executive Committee amid rumors that the Canes might be a prime candidate for relocation. 

*Pierre McGuire weighs in on Connor McDavid’s war of words on the ice and Carey Price losing his mind in the crease against the New Jersey Devils. To that end, Wayne Gretzky liked seeing McDavid get a little combative at such a young age. 

*The New York Islanders signed Cal Clutterbuck to a five year contract extension, and some are skeptical it will turn out well for the Isles.

*David Pastrnak is a premier scoring threat in the league, and Scott Cullen has some details behind that. I will say this: his stock falling in the draft had less to do with his size or heaviness, and more to do with him being concussed for a long stretch of time during the year leading up to the draft. 

*The Florida Panthers are really struggling to stay positive with a 1-5-0 record since the ownership group and management decided to fire Gerard Gallant. 

*For something completely different: Baywatch stars then and now.