Bergeron has ‘a lot of trust' in new Bruins


FOXBORO – The changes to the Bruins roster this summer shouldn’t have come as a shock to a group used to success after such a disappointing season.

While lamenting the departure of fellow Cup champs from 2011, Patrice Bergeron sounded downright excited about the altered roster set to start training camp in September. Gone are Milan Lucic, Dougie Hamilton, Reilly Smith and Carl Soderberg along with Gregory Campbell, Daniel Paille and Matt Bartkowski. Coming into the B’s fold are Matt Beleskey, Jimmy Hayes, Matt Irwin, Zac Rinaldo and a group of young defensemen ready to aid the transition game.

The Bruins might not be as talented on paper as they were last year, but impressive teams on paper don’t always translate on the ice.

It remains to be seen if the Bruins turn out to be better this season than they were last year, and there’s every possibility it could take some time for the Black and Gold to gel as a group with some very new faces. But they’re younger, faster, bigger on the wings overall and should be quite a bit hungrier after missing the playoffs last season, and Bergeron is enthused about the changes made by new GM Don Sweeney.

“It was to be expected, I guess, given the situation that we were in and the way the year ended,” said Bergeron. “It’s always tough to see guys go to be perfectly honest…it’s especially tough when it’s guys that you’ve won with. But it’s the business that we’re in, and it’s the nature of the game. You have to be a professional, and you have to look forward with what they’ve done.

“I have a lot of trust in Don and the management group. We brought in a bunch of guys that were excited to be here, want to be here and have a lot of talent as well…a lot of young guys as well with prospects and whatnot. I’m looking forward to it, and I’m excited.”

Does Bergeron believe that the Bruins roster for this upcoming season is as good as the team that narrowly missed the playoffs despite totaling 96 points last year?

“You’ve got to have high expectations for yourself, and high expectations for the team,” said Bergeron. “I’ve got a lot of trust in the guys that we’re bringing in, and a lot of trust in [the guys coming back]. As players we have to be honest, and know that individually we didn’t have good years last year. We have to be better. If we do that then it’s going to happen, and we’ll be a better team.

“Jimmy Hayes is a guy that’s from the area, and he’s definitely excited to be here. Matt Beleskey is a guy that probably took less to be here with us. It means a lot me as a player to see guys like that coming in that are really excited to play here. I’m excited to be a Bruin, and really looking forward to starting this year.”

Bergeron was one of the few Bruins players to approach his customary level of play last season in a tough year for many B’s players, but a higher level of enthusiasm for No. 37 and the rest of the Bruins would be a good start toward solving last year’s problems on the ice.

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