Knight takes up boxing, gives up Twitter

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Knight takes up boxing, gives up Twitter

Jared Knight must be pretty serious about getting ready for his first legitimate shot at an NHL job.

The 2010 second round pick is likely slotted for a job with the Providence Bruins no matter what, but hell be in the mix for a third line winger spot with Jordan Caron, Ryan Spooner and Chris Bourque among others. So hes worked diligently all summer after giving himself a few weeks to heal from a sprained ankle that dogged him through Bruins Development Camp.

Knight has taken up boxing lessons for the first time in his career, perhaps knowing that hell be expected to scrap a little bit more in professional hockey. But the workouts also serve as a rare physicalcardio workout that can simulate some of what happens on the ice. The Bs prospect laughed if he was ready to spar with Shawn Thornton once he makes it to Boston in September, but said the workouts have benefited him.

Yeah, maybe I shouldnt jump right into Thornton. I just took up boxing at the start of the summer. Ive become a big boxing fan and I love the fights, said Knight, who skated with Kevan Miller in Lansing for much of the summer.

It also works out for me because its a pretty fun way to train, and Ive gotten pretty good. You hit the bag and hit the mitts. Its pretty good.

So Ive been doing boxing four days a week. Its been busy. I dont know whats going on with the lockout, so I might have another month to work out before we end up reporting to Boston. If thats the case then Ill be coming into camp in really good shape.

Of course Knight is known more for his goal-scoring prowess, physicality and quick release that allowed him to score 87 goals over the last three seasons for the London Knights. But it sounds like Knight is also embracing the Black and Gold team toughness mantra as he joins the organization.

Thats a very good thing.

Whats another improvement for Knight 2.0 heading into the fall?

Knight has decommissioned his twitter account (@JKnight97) after he got a little too attached to it over the last couple of years. Its one less thing to worry about as he puts all of his focus into the game of hockey, and winning himself an actual job after building up a resume as one of Bostons top prospects over the last three seasons.

I might get back into it because a lot of the other guys are into the loop on it, but I was spending way too much time on there. I thought Id give it a break and focus on training rather than how many followers I had, said Knight. The first thing Id do in the morning was pick up the phone and scroll through my Twitter feed. It was Twitter and training, so I had to give myself a break.

The biggest question left for Knight is when hell report. The rookies are expected to arrive in mid-September if the NHL and NHLPA come to an agreement on a new CBA, but will report to Providence on Sept. 28 if the NHL season doesnt get moving on schedule.

The one certainty is that the rookie games set for mid-September in a Florida Panthers-hosted preseason tournament have been cancelled, and all of the young players were disappointed about that.

We dont know when were reporting. It will either be Sept. 15 or Sept. 28 depending on what happens, said Knight, who took part in the NHLPA Rookie Showcase in Toronto over the last two days along with Ryan Spooner, Dougie Hamilton and 26 other NHL hopefuls. Were just on our toes waiting for the call to report to camp. If its the 15th Ill be ready and if its the 28th Ill be ready. I would love to go to the NHL camp, but Im not really following it closely.

I remember the first rookie games in Boston and last year in New York. This year they would have been in Florida and the weather would have been pretty nice. But its really disappointing for the guys that have just been drafted because its a really good experience for them. That stuff happens, though.

Knight is hoping that stuff doesnt happen to the NHL this year, but hell be ready either way.

Krug: Bruins collapse 'is not going to happen this year'

Krug: Bruins collapse 'is not going to happen this year'

BOSTON – Having lost three games in a row for the first time under Bruce Cassidy at time of year when you can’t drop into losing streaks, Bruins fans clearly want some sense of surety when it comes to the B’s making the playoffs.

Well, they got an ironclad guarantee from Torey Krug after he was the best B’s player on the ice in a 3-2 loss to the Ottawa Senators at TD Garden. Krug has been a part of the teams that collapsed in each of the past two seasons and the puck-moving defenseman said things are going to be different this time around with nine games to go.

“I haven’t thought about it, I haven’t talked about it. It’s a different feeling this year. [A collapse] is not going to happen this year. I know we’ve got a lot of pride in this room,” said Krug, who elevated his game and scored on a nifty, Bobby Orr-esque one-man rush up the ice in the third period. He also had a team-high seven shots on net and led the B’s in ice time in the loss. “The guys that have been through it. There’s no other option except making sure we stay on course and take care and do our jobs.

“You feel like you played pretty well and things didn’t go your way. You make a big mistake and it cost you. You got to realize what’s done is done, and we have an important task on Thursday [vs. the Lightning]. We’ve got to come to the rink with no other option except winning that game. That’s the mindset we’ve got to have.”

The Black and Gold are still in a pretty good position when it comes to the playoffs, even if their lead over Toronto in the Atlantic Division is precarious right now. But it ultimately comes down to Boston summoning against Tampa Bay and the Islanders what they didn’t, or couldn’t, against Toronto and Ottawa, and making good on Krug’s defiant words following a bitter defeat. 


 

Bruins hope familiar lack of finish isn't cropping up again

Bruins hope familiar lack of finish isn't cropping up again

BOSTON – Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: The Bruins outshot an opponent, lost and then lamented their lack of finish on a bevy of scoring plays while begrudgingly tipping their hats to a hot goaltender.

It was the scenario for many disappointing losses in the first 55 games of the season under Claude Julien, and it was a little too eerily reminiscent in a 3-2 loss to the Ottawa Senators at TD Garden on Tuesday night. 

Certainly it’s just one game and there has been far too much good as of late to believe the Bruins are cannon-balling into a pool of previous bad habits. But giving up a goal in the second period while watching Craig Anderson make 18 second-period saves at the other end of the ice was a stark reminder of the bad old days.

“We struggled up in Ottawa getting through [the neutral zone], tonight I thought we did a better job,” said Torey Krug. “A win against that system is just getting the puck behind them and going in on the fore-check. We’ll take that every time. We did well, but we’ve got to find a way to get more goals on the scoreboard.”

Certainly there some stellar saves: A flashy glove hand on a Noel Acciari backhander from the slot and a couple of stops on Frank Vatrano in tight around the net come to mind. But there were also some light, perimeter play kind of nights from Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak where the turnovers (a combined eight giveaways between the two forwards) and loose play were coming fast and furious.

That’s the stuff that needs to improve after watching Ottawa score on three redirections with bodies camped in front of the net.

“There are some,” admitted Bruce Cassidy when asked about parallels to some darker days earlier in the season. “Some of it you have to give credit to the goaltender you’re playing. Look at his numbers, he’s been very good. I’m not going to look too far back. I think we had good looks off the rush – he [Craig Anderson] made saves. We did have our D come late, get a couple of good looks, and that’s something we’ve really worked on. We had a D join and score. That was actually a nice individual score. So, those parts of our game, I think, it just ebbs and flows over the course of the year where you run into hot goaltending and you have to stay with it.

“That’s when you have to keep the puck out of your net. [In Toronto], we were right there until two minutes to go where even though we weren’t scoring, we were in a position to get points. [Against the Senators] it was a breakdown right after we scored, so I think the focus has to be when you’re having tough luck around the net, you need to get points. And maybe these games end up 1-1, 2-2, they’re going into shootouts or overtime and you accumulate your points that way. I think that’s where the last two games have been disappointing. You know, we should have had points. It may not have been wins, but we should have been there at the end and playing 65 minutes, or whatever it took to finish it.”

The silver lining, of course, is that the Bruins didn't get bogged down in Guy Boucher's 1-3-1 trap and were able to dictate play a bit more while never actually leading in the game. But that does little good when won-loss results and points in the coffers are all that matters in the final weeks. 

Perhaps some of the offensive scale-back in the past few games has been by design after letting up seven goals to Edmonton in the Western Canada road finale, but it’s also about being tougher and more determined around the net.

Ottawa won that net-front battle on Tuesday night and subsequently won the hockey game, so it’s time for the Bruins to do that exact thing if they want better results vs. the Lightning and Islanders later this week.