BOSTON -- The Bruins should hold some kind of competitive advantage with 12 members of their team playing overseas along with one expected roster player also coming from both the OHL (Dougie Hamilton) and AHL (Chris Bourque). Its the most players any NHL team had in Europe during the four-month lockout and that could be conducive to a quick start to the season.
But Bruins coach Claude Julien also observed that skaters like Milan Lucic, Nathan Horton and Brad Marchand who never went overseas like Tyler Seguin, Patrice Bergeron or Zdeno Chara are already catching up after just three days of official camp practices.
I think that the guys who didnt play, you can see improvement in every day. I find personally that its starting to level off pretty quickly, said Julien. What were going to have to be careful about obviously is the schedule part of it. Guys that are used to this every day on the ice -- and every second day playing -- can handle that.
Those guys who havent played, well have to see how they do in regards to that. Hopefully they do well, but right now I have no complaints. If anything Im pleasantly surprised at the pace and the sharpness in our hockey team.
Thats good news as many wondered whether a big-bodied player like Lucic, who didnt skate much at all in the months of November and December, would struggle badly coming out of the gate. It would appear all Bruins players are past that point, but the quick start could still bring on sore groins and balky hamstrings.
One NHL team has already lost a key player as David Booth blew out his hamstring while undergoing conditioning testing over the weekend, and will be lost to the Canucks for over a month. The Black and Gold arent out of the woods as far as injuries are concerned, and they could be killers during a shortened 48-game season.
But Juliens downright positive assessment of his players bodes well that everyone on the roster is ready to sprint out of the blocks this weekend.
BOSTON – Two of the NBA’s biggest names on the trade market, Serge Ibaka and DeMarcus Cousins, changed zip codes (Ibaka to Toronto from Orlando; Cousins to New Orleans from Sacramento) without the Celtics showing much interest in swinging a deal for either player.
Could it be because they had their sights set on Detroit’s Andre Drummond all along?
Pistons general manager/head coach Stan Van Gundy has made no secret about talking with lots of teams about his players leading up to the trade deadline, well aware that his team has been one of the league’s biggest underachievers.
Detroit (27-30) is eighth in the Eastern Conference, trailing Cleveland by 13 games.
Drummond was reportedly offered to Sacramento as part of a deal for Cousins, so it should not come as a surprise that his name has found its way into the rumor mill.
Still, Drummond only added fuel to the rumor mill fire by re-tweeting the eyeball emojis posted by the Celtics' Isaiah Thomas, something Thomas did shortly before Boston added Al Horford to the mix last summer.
And then Drummond followed that up by posting his own set of eyeball emojis
on Tuesday which adds to the speculative nature of this trade deadline season, which will end Thursday at 3 p.m.
Drummond, a former UConn standout, is an easy-going, fun-loving guy, so the emoji stuff isn’t all that out of character for him. But he also changed his Twitter profile picture
to him waiving goodbye, as well as removed Pistons information from his bio.
Is he pulling our leg, or giving a heads-up that the Celtics are close to pulling off a trade?
A league source tells CSNNE.com that no deal is imminent, but Boston is a possible landing spot for Drummond if the Pistons are in fact planning on trading him which the source said, “is not a definite. Stan knows he has to do something significant with that team, if not at the deadline definitely this summer. So, he’s looking to find out the value for all his guys, Drummond included.”