With the season opening at home Wednesday against the Flyers, the Bruins don’t have long to be upset about the loss of one of their best teammates.

Still, even coach Claude Julien said after Saturday’s preseason finale that the team will take a little time to get over “the sting” of losing Johnny Boychuk ($3.37 million) to the harsh realities of today’s salary cap NHL.

Torey Krug, just 23, now understands just how important managing the salary cap is for each team after spending most of the summer without a contract because GM Peter Chiarelli couldn’t fit him under the cap. Krug and Reilly Smith had to wait all summer and through most of camp to sign their $1.4 million deals because the team couldn’t sign them.

“[It's] another lesson in the business for me,” said Krug. “I learned a few things this summer for sure, and it’€™s always going to be part of it forever as long as this game exists and the cap situation exists in this sport, so it’€™s tough to see him go for sure.”

Several defenseman will have to pick up the slack for Boychuk and will have the opportunity to step right in play a bigger role for the 30-year-old who was considered one of the heart-and-soul parts of their Stanley Cup run in 2011 and their finals appearance in 2013.

Adam McQuaid, Matt Bartkowski and Torey Krug are all younger than Boychuk and all will likely get chances to play alongside Dennis Seidenberg on Boston’s No. 2 D-pairing.

“I mean it’€™s been like this the last few years so it doesn’€™t really change anything,” Seidenberg said. “For me, it’€™s just trying to play wherever they put me and trying to do it well.”

“I didn’€™t know that’€”there was some talk about different things and stuff but I was pretty much shocked,” McQuaid said in reacting Saturday. “I don’€™t know, I guess maybe we all just kind of had that hope in the back of our minds that somehow we could all stay. He’€™s a guy that’€™s a huge part of this team and for me a guy that always put a smile on my face every day. Always came to the rink in a good mood and was cracking jokes. I think I’€™ve played seven pro seasons and six have been with Johnny so we’€™ve been through a lot together. He’€™s a guy that’€”I don’€™t think it’€™s really sunk in quite yet’€”but a guy that will be sorely missed.”

The 27-year-old McQuaid, who now takes Boychuk’s spot as the third-oldest blueliner on the Bruins, isn’t looking immediately at the trade as a sign that his future in Boston is more secure.

“Not necessarily. I don’€™t look at it that way,” McQuaid said. “I think if anything it’€™s a reality check. Anything can happen. Just because that one move is made doesn’€™t mean that more moves can’€™t be made. You want to prove yourself every day and do what you can to be a part of this team.

“I was really surprised. Again I don’€™t think it’€™s really sunk in yet. I guess there was talk about one defenseman having to be moved and I think we all just kind of hoped that there was somehow that we could all stay a part of this group. I think it will take a little time to sink in.”

Behind McQuaid in experience are Kevan Miller, Bartkowski, Krug and Dougie Hamilton, who is slotted into the No. 1 pairing with Zdeno Chara.

McQuaid knows he and the other young D will have to step up their game.

“Yeah it will be a thing that we’€™ll have to do by committee,” McQuaid said. “It will be probably everybody chipping in a little bit here and there to fill that void and guys will have to step up.

“I guess that just goes hand in hand with the situation. At this juncture you just have to wrap your head around everything. It happened just as I was coming to the rink and I had to put it in the back of my mind to focus on the game and just kept trying not to think about it and trying not to think about it and I still haven’€™t had a chance to really reflect on it so I don’€™t really know what to say.

“You guys [media] all know what Johnny’€™s personality is. He’€™s a great friend, a great teammate and a guy that’€™s just always in a good mood. He’€™s a guy that will put a smile on your face and the same time a guy that battled on the ice. You knew you were going to get everything from him and that’€™s what you want from a teammate. You respect that. It will be something that well all have to, kind of, chip in and raise our game to fill that void.”

Here were some of the other Bruins who reacted Saturday to the trade:

Patrice Bergeron: “We’€™re going to miss him. He was a great teammate for us, a great player as well. He always went to battle every night and we won a Cup together so ‘€“ definitely a guy that we’€™re all close to and [we] wish him all the best in Long Island.

“We had depth on defense and I think everybody knew that we had eight guys and that it was an option, something that might happen. And it was Johnny. So, we have plenty of confidence in all the guys that are here right now. That being said, he was definitely a big part of our defense. But, like I said, I feel confident with all the guys I have.”

“I guess it’€™s the cap era with the salary cap. I think it’€™s things that are going to happen around the league and as much as I want to see that happening, at some point some difficult decisions are going to happen. Is it a new era? I’€™m not sure. Hopefully we can create some more memories with the team that we have and relive 2011. It’€™s always about that. So, like I said, I wish him all the best and I feel great with the defensive corps that we have.”

Torey Krug: “He’€™s a big part of this room. For me personally, he was a guy that took me under his wing when I first got here and made me feel really comfortable in this room, and he was a big part. It’€™s the sad part about the business. Your friends go and it’€™s tough.

“Yeah that can be tough for sure. This is my first taste of it, so this is all new to me. I’€™m coming into a season where I tried to prepare as best I could, and you look at the group of guys around you and you think everybody’€™s going to be there, and unfortunately they’€™re not, so it’€™s definitely a tough part of it for sure.

“Obviously we know everything we have in Johnny, and he’€™s a great hockey player and an even better person and fits in very well in this locker room. Times like this though you trust your GM. We know he’€™s doing everything he can to make this team a better team, and you just trust him, so yeah it’€™s tough.”

Dennis Seidenberg: “It’€™s pretty sad. He was a big part of our team. He was always a guy that played his heart out every night on the ice and to see him go is tough but that’€™s how the business goes in the salary cap era. You just have to try to move forward and pick up the slack he left. I mean everybody understands that it had to be done because there was no room and that’€™s why it happened. For us, again, we have to move forward and focus on the regular season on Wednesday and that’€™s about it.

“He definitely talked about it but he handled it very well, I think. He knows that he’€™s in a good spot moving forward whether it’€™s with his current team or wherever it’€™s going to be. But he knows that he’€™s got a good few years ahead of him and he’€™ll be all set. The first time I heard of it was when Johnny [Boychuk] said bye to everybody in a group text. So, I was kind of surprised. I think everybody knew that something was going to happen eventually; it was just a matter of time. But, I didn’€™t expect it today or [it to be] Johnny.

“I think we’€™re set up pretty well. I think, again, we have a good mix of young guys and old guys. Guys can really move up-ice and catch the plays out defensively. I think everybody brings something to the table and I think we’€™ll be good. It’€™s pretty tough. He was a big part; he was a funny guy like you know. He was very vocal on and off the ice and everybody loved him. We lost our D.J. so that’€™s another tough part. So, it hurts that he left.

“It remains to be seen. We’€™re just starting our regular season and I think we’€™re ready to go. I think we have the guys to pick up what he left and we’€™ll see.”

Milan Lucic: “We shared a lot of special times together so definitely going to miss him. He called me after it happened. It was definitely an emotional phone call between the two of us, and all you can do now is just wish him all the best in his future. [He was a] well-liked, popular guy, not just off the ice, for who he was off the ice. Everyone respected him for what he did on the ice just as much. A warrior, a guy who played the way that he did and didn’€™t miss too many games because of his durability and I think he was a big part of this team, kind of helping solidify that defense corps that we were able to get to that next level, that championship level, and as a guy, as a teammate, just as an overall person and a professional, he’€™s, I think he’€™s deeply going to be missed.

“It is hard, but you look at our management and their track record and what they’€™ve done over the last seven years and what they’€™ve done with the teams that they’€™ve put together. They’€™ve always done a great job so as a player I’€™ve never questioned any of the moves that they’€™ve made trading big names like even [Phil] Kessel and [Tyler] Seguin and we’€™re still able to be an elite team in the NHL, so we trust that the management believes in the guys that are in this room, and we have to believe in each other as well.

“To be honest, I didn’€™t even know what to expect. I had no idea what management was thinking. I was more focused on just trying to get myself ready to go with the injury and all that type of stuff more than what was going on from that standpoint, and the move was made. You hope that what we got in return can turn into some pretty valuable players, and still as a player I think there’€™s a lot to look forward to heading into this season even with this deal.”

Zdeno Chara: “I think that we all really feel that Johnny is such a great teammate. Always loyal and always willing to do whatever is being asked for him. It’€™s not very easy to see one of your teammates and good friends to be traded but I’€™m sure that everybody tried their best to keep the team together. We have to move on. Obviously we wish him all the best. He will always be very much missed and all of the memories we have while he was playing here are always going to be with us.

“Well you don’€™t know if it’€™s going to make us worse. It’€™s something that I guess I really wish that we’€™d be able to keep everybody together for a long time but you always try to improve the team. At certain times it’€™s not always easy, like I said, to keep certain guys in positions. Sometimes, as we know, it’€™s a game of numbers and we know who were talking about right now.

“Yeah I mean it’€™s something that we have to turn the page on. Focus on what’€™s coming up. You have to be willing to adjust to these kinds of situations and moves. Sometimes they come early in the season and sometimes they come right before the trade deadline. It’€™s just one of those things that you have to be able to take and then basically move on. Like I said, were all going to miss him. We all know Johnny was such a great teammate on and off the ice. He was always happy, always made it very fun but it is what it is. Sometimes things like this happen and players can’€™t control them.

“Johnny was always such a fun guy to be around. His presence was always such a gift for this team. Winning is always something that’€™s always on top of the list. For sure, those memories will always stay with all of us.”

Blog Author: 
Mike Petraglia

Claude Julien had to process the loss of Johnny Boychuk just like everyone else. And it wasn’t easy.

Claude Julien had to process the loss of Johnny Boychuk just like everyone else. And it wasn’t easy.

“I don’€™t think my thoughts differ from anybody else,” Julien said after his team’s 4-3 shootout loss to the Red Wings Saturday night. “I think we’€™re all disappointed to see him leave. As I mentioned, Peter [Chiarelli] eluded to that in his press conference. It stings for everybody. He was a good player, he was a good person, very well liked.

“Unfortunately our game is in that position where sometimes we’€™re forced to make those unpopular decisions. For a coaching staff, we’€™ll miss him like everybody else. But we have a job to do, and we feel we have a lot of good players here that we can certainly overcome this. And that’€™s just the way it goes, and part of hockey, and part of a tough day. You hope we’€™ll be able to turn the page here and by the time we start the season we’€™ll be ready to go.”

That position, of course, is a result of a salary cap squeeze, brought on – in part – with the signing of David Krejci. Now, the 30-year-old Boychuk (due $3.4 million in the final year of his three-year contract) will head to the Islanders while Julien is left to find a replacement to pair with Dennis Seidenberg.

He has several options, starting with Matt Bartkowski. Adam McQuaid, Dougie Hamilton and Torey Krug will also be asked to carry a bigger load.

“I think there’€™s no doubt that the experience those young guys got was valuable,” Julien said. “But at the same time, we’€™ve got to remember that we’€™ve got Seidenberg, we’€™ve got McQuaid back in our lineup, which is two more veterans. That certainly helps that youth maybe not be so young. So those are things. But the guys that got that experience ‘€“ you’€™re talking about Bartkowski, talking about Krug, you know Dougie Hamilton. I think those things will certainly pay off for us.”

And whom might Julien pair with Seidenberg to start the season?

“I think that we’€™ll kind of experiment with that,” the coach said. “We might try something and hopefully it works, if it doesn’€™t we’€™ll find something else. But at the end of the day, I think we’€™ve got enough good D [defensemen] that we can move around and have a solid six-man D every night. So that’€™s where we’€™re at right now. We have a Seidenberg that can play left or right and has done that his whole career. So I think we’€™re going to be in decent shape here.

“There’€™s a lot of guys today that were brought up playing a certain position and they hesitate a little bit, and those are becoming a little bit more rare as I guess the new generations come in and they get used to playing that position. There are still some in the league that don’€™t mind one side or the other, but for the most part a lot of them like to play their strong sides. I think Europeans are the ones that a lot of times from up front or on the back end they don’€™t mind playing their off wings here. But I think with time those things will all work themselves out. But right now, we’€™ve got Seids that can play both, and we’€™ve got four left Ds and three rights right now that are here. So as we speak it works out well that way.”

Julien said he thinks the two days of team building Sunday and Monday can help the team come together after the news of the big trade. He said the team has no choice with the opener against Philadelphia at TD Garden Wednesday night.

“I think as I mentioned earlier, it stings for everybody and it stung for me too and the coaching staff, and even we were quiet,” Julien said. “That doesn’€™t mean we don’€™t support ‘€“ we obviously support our organization and understand why they had to make some of those tough decisions. But it doesn’€™t mean that the sting isn’€™t there. And I addressed the team before the game and explained to them that we still have a good group here and that those things happen and everything else. I just kind of wanted to make sure that we were ready to play tonight. You know, it’€™s always a good thing in a way that we don’€™t start the regular season until Wednesday, because it’€™s going to to give us a little bit of time to process that like anything else. And we’€™ll be ready to move forward here by the time the puck drops on Wednesday night.

“I think when you look at our game our guys went out there and played hard. I think we were fine as a group. You know, it just happened. It’€™s like anything else when you hear the news for the first time it stings a little bit. But the guys are professional enough. I thought they handled it well, they went out there, and they played hard. I congratulate them for that, and they deserve a lot of credit for it.”

Blog Author: 
Mike Petraglia

Patrice Bergeron had a hat trick Saturday night at TD Garden as the Bruins lost to the Red Wings, 4-3, in a shootout in their preseason finale.

The Bruins trade of Johnny Boychuk worsens the team for this season.</p>
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Patrice Bergeron had a hat trick Saturday night at TD Garden as the Bruins lost to the Red Wings, 4-3, in a shootout in their preseason finale.

David Krejci left the game after two shifts in the second period, returned for a third five minutes later before leaving the game for good. The Bruins did not announce why.

Bergeron scored all three of Boston’€™s goals, tying the game at one in the first period, burying a rebound of a Dougie Hamilton shot at 3:14 of the third period and finishing off a nice play by Carl Soderberg at 10:46 of the period.

Detroit got goals from Riley Sheahan, Xavier Ouellet and Andrej Nestrasil.

Both Ryan Spooner and David Pastrnak dressed for the B’€™s, playing for the second time in as many nights. Pastrnak, who was skating on a line with Spooner and Carl Soderberg, had a great scoring chance with just over a minute to play, but had a pair of shots stopped by Petr Mrazek.

Tuukka Rask was in net for the Bruins.

The B’€™s will open the regular season Wednesday when they host the Flyers at the Garden.

Blog Author: 
DJ Bean

Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli said Saturday that he traded defenseman Johnny Boychuk due to the team’€™s salary cap situation and because he found the return ‘€” two second-round picks and a conditional third ‘

Peter Chiarelli (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Peter Chiarelli (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli said Saturday that he traded defenseman Johnny Boychuk due to the team’€™s salary cap situation and because he found the return ‘€” two second-round picks and a conditional third ‘€” to be strong value. He did concede one point, however.

“This doesn’€™t make us better now, obviously,” Chiarelli said, “but it’€™s something that, when I look at it in a series of steps, I think we made the right move.”

Chiarelli mentioned “steps” throughout the press conference to discuss Saturday’€™s trade with the Islanders. When asked what his next move was, the B’€™s general manager said that there may be roster moves in the coming days.

Boychuk is a free agent at season’€™s end and figures to command big money on the open market. Chiarelli said that he did not attempt to sign Boychuk before trading him.

Moving Boychuk, while making the current roster worse, gives the team one less big name to sign before the start of next season. Dougie Hamilton, Torey Krug and Reilly Smith will all be restricted free agents, while Carl Soderberg will be an unrestricted free agent. Though the salary cap is expected to go up from it’€™s current $69 million ceiling, the already have $49,897,857 against the salary cap committed to 10 players (not including Marc Savard) for the 2015-16 season.

“We’€™ve got a lot of people to sign,” Chiarelli said. “There’€™s a list of priorities and part of my job is to prioritize things. That’€™s a little bit of how it shakes out. I’€™d love to keep this team together player-to-player as long as I could if I felt it was prudent on the hockey front and the financial front. I’€™ve tried to keep the critical mass together and will continue to provide the right moves for the organization.”

Blog Author: 
DJ Bean

The Bruins have traded defenseman Johnny Boychuk to the Islanders for second-round picks in the 2015 and 2016 drafts and a conditional 2015 third-round pick. The B’s will get New York’s 2015 third-rounder if the Islanders trade Boychuk to an Eastern Conference team this season.

According to Arthur Staple of Newsday, the Bruins have traded defenseman Johnny Boychuk to the Islanders for second-round picks in the 2015 and 2016 drafts and a 2015 third-round pick.

Boychuk, 30, was entering the last year of his contract. His deal carries a $3.36 million cap hit and he will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season.

For more Bruins news, visit weei.com/bruins.

Blog Author: 
DJ Bean