Bartkowski's in . . . at least until Kampfer returns

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Bartkowski's in . . . at least until Kampfer returns

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.com Bruins Insider Follow @hackswithhaggs
BOSTON --By the sights and sounds of things, it appears that young Bruins prospect Matt Bartkowski will crack the Bruins roster for the start of the regular season, but Steve Kampfer isnt entirely out of the picture either.

The Bruins await Kampfers MRI readings on Friday afternoon after he suffered a left knee injury in the third period on Thursday night, but they know that the promising puck-mover isnt going to be available for at least the next few weeks with the Oct. 6 season opener right around the corner.

The Bruins are just hoping its not a long term injury for Kampfer, but they dont have a read on that prior to the medical testing.

Until we get those details we dont know, said Claude Julien. We feel like its getting better and we feel theres a possibility it wont be the max number of games lost. Hopefully hell be back sooner rather than later.

So Bartkowski is all but assured to make the Bs as a seventh defenseman, and rightfully so after a solid training camp.

Julien stressed Kampfer wont lose out on a roster shot due to injury and will get his shot once hes feeling healthy.

Weve got a defenseman that was injured last night, so weve got seven in camp now. The calculation is there, right? said Julien. If we plan on seven then things are looking pretty good for Bartkowski right now then.

Having said everything else, when Kampfer comes back the roster battle will still be on. Kampfer had a great game against the Senators and I thought it was extremely unfortunate that happened to him. Hes earned the opportunity to get back and battle for that spot. So its not a given.

Bartkowski put on seven pounds over the summer and the Bs coaching staff has remarked on the gains the youngster has made in the physical strength department. Now hell get his audition with the Bruins holding only seven healthy defensemen on their roster and Saturdays preseason finale against the Islanders sitting dead ahead.

I worked on putting a little more weight and getting stronger, said Bartkowski. Its easy for me to gain weight rather than lose weight, so its doesnt really come off once its on.

Bartkowski said hes definitely looking forward to the final roster word one way or another, and says hell be ready to show one last time against the Islanders that hes worthy of an NHL spot.

Im looking for that final where am I going to play weight to be lifted off my shoulders, said Bartkowski. Itll be nice and Im excited to play another preseason game.

The final audition may be this weekend against the Isles, but it appears that Bartkowski has got the part regardless of the outcome.

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

McIntyre still building and earning trust of B's coaching staff

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McIntyre still building and earning trust of B's coaching staff

BRIGHTON, Mass -- It hasn’t been an easy road for Bruins rookie goaltender Zane McIntyre since getting called back up by Boston a few weeks ago.

The 24-year-old netminder is trying to give the B’s top-level goaltending while earning the trust of the Bruins coaching staff, and adjusting to the sporadic playing time that goes along with playing understudy to a No. 1 netminder like Tuukka Rask. The three goals allowed in the third period of Sunday afternoon’s 5-1 loss to the Penguins didn’t look good on paper, but really there wasn’t much McIntyre could do with the defense totally breaking down in front of him during a 12-shot barrage in the final 20 minutes.

The 3.95 goals against average and .860 save percentage certainly look like a little frightening for the first-year goalie, but the truth is there’s going to be some bumps as he adjusts to life as a backup for the first time.

“[The adjustment] is mostly between the ears, to be honest,” said McIntyre. “I have confidence in my physical abilities and I know what I can do, and what makes my game successful. So right now it’s just building confidence every day in practice and staying persistent, staying with it. I know good things are going to happen when you surround yourself with good people, and the biggest thing is battling every day and making sure I’m contributing to the team.”

McIntyre will certainly have to be sharp if he’s put back in the crease on Tuesday night against the Red Wings after Rask exited from Sunday’s loss in the second period with symptoms of a migraine. The Bruins top goalie missed practice on Monday while getting himself checked out medically, and there’s a chance he could be out if the symptoms are in any way related to the Roman Josi shot he took off his neck last week.

“I’m just taking it day-by-day to be honest. That’s what I’ve always done in the past, and I’m just trying to build up confidence every day,” said McIntyre, who had been lights out in Providence prior to getting the call to Boston. “We’ll just see what happens and roll with it.”

That’s a challenge McIntyre will certainly be up for in a different way than Sunday’s mop-up duty, but it remains to be seen just how steady-footed the Bruins will be about their goalie situation if Rask is expected to miss any time this week.