BOSTON (AP) – New Boston Bruins coach Claude Julien watched from the top of the bleachers while many of the young players hoping to make the team tried to impress him.
“It’s training camp for me, too,” Julien said Monday at the team’s practice arena after the first day of the team’s developmental camp. “For me, this is about observing – getting to know the players, get familiar with them.”
Julien was hired June 21 as the Bruins coach, just two months after he was fired by the first-place New Jersey Devils with three games left in the regular season.
He replaced Dave Lewis, who was fired in Boston less than a year after he was hired to replace Mike Sullivan.
Former Bruins defenseman Don Sweeney, now the team’s director of player development, put the team’s prospects through a 90-minute practice on Monday.
“It’s part of our future. Our future’s important,” Julien said. “Teams that have a lot of prospects always seem to be staying on the top of the standings.”
Julien said he knew the Bruins veterans from playing against them, but he wasn’t as familiar with the young players like first-round draft pick Zach Hamill. But he promised not to judge the players based on what they did in their first workout in a Bruins practice sweater.
The development camp is as much about bonding as about training.
“We wanted to bring the guys together,” Chiarelli said. “This is a fine time for them to get used to the organization.”
To judge skating over this, we’re not going to do that.
It’s also a time for Chiarelli and Julien to get to know each other.
“I’ve known him a long time, and we’ve talked about hockey a lot,” Chiarelli said.