BRIGHTON, MA – Just days after signing a pro tryout agreement with the Boston Bruins, veteran defenseman Anton Stralman will suit up for the Black and Gold on Tuesday night in the B’s second preseason game against the New York Rangers at TD Garden.
It looks like Stralman will be skating on the right side in a top pairing with Hampus Lindholm and giving the Boston Bruins a look at him in the kind of top-4 spot he’d fill out to start the season if he indeed makes the team. With Charlie McAvoy and Matt Grzelcyk both out until sometime in November, the Boston Bruins will certainly need somebody to step up on the back end for the first few weeks of the season.
Perhaps it will be Jakub Zboril after playing so well at the start of training camp with the ability to play both sides, or maybe, just maybe, it can be the 36-year-old Stralman coming into the Boston situation with eyes wide open and no guaranteed contract in hand.
“I’m not going to go in and talk about what I’m going to do four months from now. I’m focusing on today and tomorrow. At the end of the day, if there’s a spot available, awesome. If not, that’s life. I’m just excited to be here. I think the culture’s great. There’s a lot of veterans on this team, which I think is fun,” said Stralman, who had eight goals and 23 points in 74 games for the Arizona Coyotes last season. “I think it’s a good mix of players. When I look at this roster, there’s a lot of guys hitting their prime now. Also, you have guys like (Patrice Bergeron) who have won and know what it takes. I think that’s an exciting mix. Especially with the goalies, too. I think it’s a fun team. If I didn’t think this team would be successful, I wouldn’t be here.”
There will be other veterans in the B’s lineup for their first home game of the preseason with Jeremy Swayman getting the start, and with Trent Frederic, Charlie Coyle and Craig Smith suiting up for top line duties while a possible fourth line of AJ Greer, Jack Studnicka and Marc McLaughlin get a dress rehearsal in Black and Gold as well.
Certainly, the veterans are excited to start playing against somebody other than teammates and doing it in front of the home crowd for the first time in a long time.
“It will be great. We always look forward to it, coming off a long summer,” said Coyle. “We just want to get to playing and playing hockey again, playing in front the fans. We’re really excited to be back [at TD Garden].”
🎥 Charlie Coyle on tonight’s preseason home opener at @tdgarden: “It will be great. We always look forward to it, coming from a long summer. We just want to get to playing and playing hockey again, playing in front the fans. We’re really excited to be back there.” pic.twitter.com/x5sCSvwbWY
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) September 27, 2022
On the injury front, Jakub Lauko (lower body) was skating in a red no-contact jersey today after leaving practice early on Monday.
Here’s the projected Boston Bruins lineup against the New York Rangers based on Tuesday’s morning skate at Warrior Ice Arena: