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.

Bean: The (incorrect) case for the Bruins signing Kevin Shattenkirk

Bean: The (incorrect) case for the Bruins signing Kevin Shattenkirk

The Bruins should not sign Kevin Shattenkirk. They really shouldn’t. 

Yet they might. Pierre McGuire said on TSN Radio Tuesday that his guess is that Shattenkirk, arguably the best free agent defenseman on the market, will end up in Boston.

It is remarkable how universally against a Shattenkirk megadeal B’s fans have seemingly been. A Twitter poll with over 3,600 votes this month had Bruins fans preferring Boston sign 40-year-old Zdeno Chara to a two-year, $8 million extension than the 28-year-old  Shattenkirk to a seven-year, $45.5 million deal. 

That is obviously the correct conclusion, but considering how hard the false “Chara is old and bad” garbage is pushed in this town, it’s telling that 64 percent would rather he stick around than the team build the defense around Shattenkirk. 

Of course, Shattenkirk is not a bad player just because he’s been overrated in recent seasons. He’s a decent second-pairing defender and strong power play asset who can be penciled in for 40 points a year. The Bruins already have that in Torey Krug, and he makes less than Shattenkirk figures to command. Shattenkirk is also a righty who plays on the right, which is not a need for the Bruins, whereas Krug is a left shot who plays both sides. 

Add in the Bruins’ cap situation due to some bad contracts and they why of Shattenkirk would be a bad signing doesn’t need to be re-hashed. By this point, the explanation’s been given a few times in a few different places. 

So what would the Bruins’ actual case for signing Shattenkirk be? 

TO KEEP IT MOVING 

Last season was encouraging for Bruins fans because it saw them reach the playoffs for the first time in three years while also seeing young talent emerge. Yet they still only made the playoffs by two points, something of which Don Sweeney and Cam Neely are undoubtedly aware. 

So for all the good signs, this could be a fringe playoff team again if more improvements aren’t made, and missing the playoffs for the second time in three years would mark a step back in the eyes of ownership, perhaps putting jobs in danger. It would be a shame if money were spent irresponsibly for the sake of saving jobs, but Shattenkirk would definitely make the Bruins better next season, even if it crippled them financially down the road. 

TO PULL A CHIARELLIAN FREE AGENT SWITCHEROO

With McAvoy set to be a top-pairing player and Brandon Carlo a good second-pairing option, the Bruins do not have a need for a highly paid right-shot defender. That doesn’t mean they don’t have needs elsewhere. 

Last offseason, Peter Chiarelli made the controversial move of trading Taylor Hall, one of the best left wings on the planet. He did it to get Adam Larsson to help build Edmonton’s blue line up, then he went out and signed Milan Lucic in free agency to replace Hall. 

If the Bruins truly have designs on adding Shattenkirk, perhaps they could have something similar in mind: Trade someone like Carlo for either a left-shot defenseman or a left wing, then replace Carlo with Shattenkirk. 

This would still not be financially palatable, however. When the Oilers traded Hall for Larsson, they swapped a player with a $6 million cap hit for a player with a $4.16 million cap hit and replaced the original player (Hall) with a player in Lucic who carried a $6 million cap hit. So essentially they netted one player for an additional $4.16 million. 

Carlo is on his entry level contract, so unless the Bruins traded him for a player on an entry-level deal, they’d be spending a lot of money in any maneuver that involved replacing him with Shattenkirk. 

TO GO ALL-IN ON POST-CLAUDE LIFE

Claude Julien’s detractors lamented his affinity for responsibility. They loved it when Bruce Cassidy was more open to trading chances. 

Well, you like trading chances? Shattenkirk’s your guy. He’s a good skater, a good offensive player and a sub-par defender. You put Krug, Shattenkirk and McAvoy as three of your four top-four defenseman and you’ll be a long way from the days of Chara, Seidenberg and Boychuk, for better or worse. 

BUT, KEEP IN MIND . . . 

They for sure should not sign Kevin Shattenkirk. 

Morning Skate: What does trading a first-rounder get you now?

Morning Skate: What does trading a first-rounder get you now?

Here are all the links from around the hockey world and what I’m reading, while wishing that Gordon Hayward and Paul George were already in Boston, like, yesterday.

*FOH (Friend of Haggs) Elliotte Freidman gives his 30 thoughts for the week, including the trade value of a first-round pick right now.

*It could that non-unrestricted free agents steal all of the thunder on July 1 with massive contract extensions a la Connor McDavid.

*PHT writer James O’Brien has the Detroit Red Wings taking potential fliers on a number of veteran D-men that are out on the free market.

*With free agency right around the corner, the legendary Stan Fischler details the sad end to Bobby Orr’s career in Boston, where he was lied to about the offer extended to him and ended up playing things out with the Chicago Blackhawks in a way that it shouldn’t have gone. The sight of Orr in a Blackhawks sweater is one of the real all-time NHL oddities out there.

*The NCAA is eying college hockey expansion in NHL markets, including the University of Illinois and Pitt, and, from what I’ve been told, perhaps UNLV and maybe even Vanderbilt. This is a great thing for amateur hockey players and anybody that can’t get enough of the game.  

*Ex-Senators defenseman Marc Methot holds no ill will toward the Sens after being dealt from Vegas to the Dallas Stars following his selection in the expansion draft.

*Josh Ho-Sang shares his wisdom to Islanders prospects as a 21-year-old somebody that’s gone through the ups and downs of being in their shoes.

*As we referenced above, Connor McDavid is closing in on a massive contract extension with the Edmonton Oilers that will probably make him the highest paid player in the NHL.

*For something completely different: My heart goes out to this Roslindale family fighting through a situation with a child who has a life-threatening disorder. They have a Go-Fund-Me page, so please give if you can.