David Pastrnak and Ondrej Kase have only taken to the ice once since the NHL’s ‘Return to Play’ camp kicked off on July 13th. The expectation, from Team President Cam Neely, is that they won’t take the ice until the team goes to Toronto. The Bruins, along with the other eleven Eastern Conference playoff teams, will report to the Toronto bubble on Sunday.
“It’s hard to say right now,” Neely said Wednesday. “My best guess would be Toronto. But there’s hopes that (they will) before we leave, but my best guess would be Toronto.”
The situation, having two top-nine forwards unavailable for camp, is far from ideal. It’s possible that the Bruins get less than a week with Pastrnak and Kase on the ice prior to opening the round-robin on August 2nd.
“Of course (we hope things would have played out a little differently),” Neely continued. “We had the date for when camp was starting and knew that some players may need to quarantine when they get here, you kind of hope they would get here a little earlier. But we didn’t really have much say in that and that was really left up to the players.”
IMPACT IN TORONTO?
The Bruins will open the round-robin on August 2nd against the Philadelphia Flyers. They’ll then face the Tampa Bay Lightning on August 5th and Washington Capitals on August 8th. The club will also play an exhibition game on July 30th against the Columbus Blue Jackets.
How this situation impacts the Bruins in the bubble remains to be seen. Not even Cam Neely has that answer.
“And so obviously with what’s played out and transpired you certainly would’ve hoped there’s some different decisions made,” Neely admitted. “But in the long run I don’t know if it’s really going to affect us once we get into Toronto, I think we’ll be fine.”