I can hardly believe that we’re more than halfway through this hellyear, this latest annual edition of the dumbest, darkest timelime. Yep, we’re almost at the seventh month and we’re trying to figure out if the NHL can award the Stanley Cup this season.
Matt Grzelcyk has joined the practice participants at Warrior and while he’s eager to get back to training, he knows that he has limited time to get back into game shape. Like everyone else living in this time, he is frustrated by the amount of precautions that need to happen but also understands that they are very necessary to stop the spread and keep people as safe as possible.
“I think the league and the team are taking all the right measures to have the players stay as healthy as possible, and staff coming to the rink, keeping them in mind,” said Grzelcyk, who posted 21 points (4 goals, 17 assists) in 68 games during the 2019-20 regular season.
“It’s been tough on everyone, but I think that we’re trying to do the best we can to make it a safe environment and really learn some things in this phase here and hopefully it will make us better moving forward.”
One of the things that Grzelcyk revealed was that the two groups that are currently practicing have to juggle their limited time on the ice so that the other group can get on the ice. There’s probably a whole sanitizing protocol that occurs between and after the groups as well.
Grzelcyk added that the Bruins’ veteran core has taken the lead in organizing the skates which are limited in their length and scope given the Phase 2 restrictions that require strict time constraints to fit in each group and prevent coaches from being on the ice.
“You expect to have a little rust and you know it’s gonna be a challenge coming back,” he said. “Some of the older guys have drawn up their own drills or maybe consulted with [skating and skills consultant Kim Brandvold] going into days. But we’ve had a good pace to it.
“We realized that you don’t have a ton of time at the rink and you want to be respectful and leaving enough time to have the next group come in and everything be a safe environment for everyone to step back into. It’s been fun to do different drills and twirl around for sure.”
It looks like Tuukka Rask will join a group soon along with Connor Clifton and Anders Bjork, both of whom are back in their hometowns spending time with family. As for other players, we’ll find out soon since training camp starts sooner than you think.