Haggerty: Thoughts from Bruins testing day

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Haggerty: Thoughts from Bruins testing day

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.com Bruins Insider Follow @hackswithhaggs

BOSTON -- A hockey team is never as well-conditioned and optimistic as they are on the very first day of training camp. So it was with the Stanley Cup champion Bruins on the day they underwent physicals and fitness testing.

The biggest hurdle in the Bs fitness test was a series of sprints that each player must do in under 60 seconds, but there didnt seem to be anybody lagging behind the group among the 53 players invited to main camp.

Well, maybe the goaltenders. But they just need to stop the puck anyway.

Its quite a stretch from the old time hockey days when Claude Julien was a player, and NHL skaters would roll into camp out of shape after toiling through a second job during the summer.

For these Bruins it was about partying and celebrating the Cup win for two or three weeks before getting right back into working out with an eye toward todays Sept. 16 return date at TD Garden.

It feels good to get going again, said Claude Julien. Its been a great summer and a lot of fun, but for us its time to turn the page and get back to work. I think our players are in the right frame of mind in regards to that and thats what we wanted to see.

Now we just have to go out there and prove that were ready to go while understanding theres going to be challenges out there. Being Stanley Cup champions means teams will be playing their best against us every night. We understand that.

With that in mind, here are a few observations from the first glance at the players on testing day:
Tyler Seguin said he gained 10 pounds and Bs GM Peter Chiarelli told me Seguin was up to 196 pounds when he arrived in Boston last week. Chiarelli also thought the 19-year-old might have grown an inch as well, and it all speaks to just how much Seguin is still developing. Despite a picture or two online of Seguin living it up in Boston immediately after the Cup win, the kid put in the work over the summer and should be a bigger, stronger, better version of himself this year.
Adam McQuaid looks like he swallowed a barbell or two over the summer on Prince Edward Island, and clearly hasnt let his long term contract extension affect his work ethic. McQuaid was already a tough customer over the last two seasons, but - as the great Mr. T once said -- I pity the fool who messes with a buffed up Mullet this season.
Not a hint of Marc Savard in the locker room, on the tip of players tongues or among the training camp milieu. Bruins coach Claude Julien actually mentioned Savard as a player in the past tense when talking about him, and it appears the Bs have truly moved on from a player that may not ever be coming back.

Sadly, Savards biggest contribution to this years team may be the 4 million cap hit wiped off Bostons cap ledger that will give Chiarelli and Co. upwards of 9 million in cap space to play with during the season.

He was part of our team last year. Certainly that injury was a big blow to him and to our team, but we made sure to include him as part of our Stanley Cup celebration, said Julien. We hope to see him here down the road because he was a part of our hockey club. We have not forgotten him.

Joe Haggerty can be reached at jhaggerty@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs

Bruins don't extend qualifying offer to Joe Morrow

Bruins don't extend qualifying offer to Joe Morrow

With free agency just around the corner, the Bruins have officially cut ties with former first-round pick and last bastion of the Tyler Seguin trade, Joe Morrow.

The 24-year-old Edmonton native arrived in Boston along with Loui Eriksson, Reilly Smith and Matt Fraser in exchange for Seguin when he was shipped to Dallas, and now all of those players have moved on from Boston as well. Boston does still carry Jimmy Hayes on their roster, a player traded from Florida in exchange for Smith, as a last remnant of the Seguin deal, but it isn't expected to be too long before Hayes moves on from Boston as well.  

The B’s announced on Monday afternoon that they hadn’t extended a qualifying offer to Morrow, as well as P-Bruins power forward Colton Hargrove, as a restricted free agent, and that both B’s youngsters were now free to sign with any of the 30 NHL teams as free agents.

The Bruins extended qualifying offers to restricted free agents in Noel Acciari, Linus Arnesson, Austin Czarnik, Zane McIntyre, David Pastrnak, Tim Schaller, Ryan Spooner and Malcolm Subban, and will retain the associated team rights with all of those players. Negotiations are ongoing between the Bruins and Pastrnak continue over a long term deal that would put him in the same $6 million plus per season level as teammate Brad Marchand, but one source with knowledge of the negotiations indicated it’s “not close” to being a done deal.

Some RFA’s like Spooner and Subban might not necessarily fit into the long term plan for the Black and Gold, but they need to maintain their rights if they hope to trade them as valued assets down the line.

Morrow never put together the talent that made him a former first-round pick while he was in Boston, and totaled just one assist in 17 games for the B’s before playing well in five playoff games after getting pushed into duty due to injuries. In all Morrow finished with two goals and nine points along with a minus-8 rating in 65 games over three seasons in Boston, but could never string together an extended run of consistent play at the NHL level.

With the Bruins in the market to bring on another left-shot defenseman into the Boston fold this summer, it was pretty clear that the time had come to move on from Morrow while allowing him to potentially develop as an NHL D-man elsewhere.