Bruins

Zach Senyshyn on debut goal: 'It’s a dream come true'

Zach Senyshyn on debut goal: 'It’s a dream come true'

Four years after being selected 15th overall in the 2015 NHL Draft, Zach Senyshyn finally made his Boston Bruins debut. The winger had drawn attention for his inability to reach the NHL level as quickly as some had hoped. This was exacerbated by comparisons to his counterparts from that draft, like the 16th pick, Matt Barzal, who won the Calder trophy in his first season.

But on Thursday against the Minnesota Wild, all of the negative energy melted away.

Senyshyn logged 12:41 of ice time in the Bruins' 3-0 win over the Wild and generally played well. Late in the game, Senyshyn notched the first goal of his NHL career, an empty netter. Despite looking cool, calm, and collected on the ice, Senyshyn admitted that he was dealing with some nerves ahead of the game in an interview captured by the Bruins' official Twitter.

To be honest, since I landed in Minnesota my hands have been sweating non-stop. But once the puck dropped, it’s just hockey, right? The nerves kind of fade away.  I was lucky to have a great locker room in here, guys that were really supportive and guys that I’ve kind of grown up with and gone through the program with. It was a lot of fun once it got started.

It's good that Senyshyn felt comfortable with the Bruins right away. And it certainly showed in his performance.

When asked about how he would describe his first NHL goal 30 years from now, Senyshyn offered this humorous take.

Oh, top shelf, dangled a couple of guys before. No, again, it’s a dream come true any way you put it. You put the puck in the net in the National Hockey League and you’re never going to forget it.

Senyshyn's performance should leave Bruins fans encouraged. While he's unlikely to play a role for the team during the playoffs this year, it's always nice to see one of the team's top prospects look comfortable at the NHL level.

Senyshyn should get a chance to log action on Saturday in the Bruins' regular-season finale on Saturday against the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Bruins figure to, once again, rest some of their starters with their first-round matchup against the Toronto Maple Leafs already set.

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Torey Krug hoping he's "part of next wave of players" to get deals with Brandon Carlo, Charlie McAvoy taken care of

Torey Krug hoping he's "part of next wave of players" to get deals with Brandon Carlo, Charlie McAvoy taken care of

BRIGHTON, Mass – Torey Krug long assumed that the reason he hadn’t talked contract extension this summer with the Bruins was that they were busy working on deals for restricted free agent D-men Charlie McAvoy and Brandon Carlo.

Now that both McAvoy and Carlo are back in the fold with reasonable cap numbers for the next few years, Bruins general manager admitted a couple of days ago that the team can move on to future forecasts and discussions with looming free agents. As of a couple of days later the Bruins and Krug hadn’t started a dialogue on a contract extension, but the productive offensive defenseman is eagerly looking forward to those discussions as he readies for the final year of a current deal paying him $5.25 million per season.

“It’s been no secret that it’s been at the forefront getting those two deals done because [McAvoy and Carlo] are a big part of our team,” said Krug. “At least we have them locked up for the near future. So you just hope that you’re part of the next wave of guys that will get dealt with.

“I’ve made no secret that I want to be part of this room, part of this organization and part of this city [beyond this season]. So I’m hoping sooner than later it gets dealt with so I can clear my mind and focus on hockey. But that being said, it’s never a distraction. I’ve done it year after in my career aside from the [current] four-year deal.”

Only Brent Burns, Victor Hedman, Erik Karlsson and John Carlson have scored more points than Krug’s 163 points over the last three seasons among NHL defensemen, and three out of those four have won Norris Trophies over that time span. Sure Krug has also been a minus-12 over that span as well, but there’s no denying his offensive prowess when he’s averaged nine goals and 54 points a season while playing top-4 minutes on the back end.

The 28-year-old also finally showed he can stay healthy during the postseason last spring and posted two goals and 18 points in 24 playoff games last spring. If the Bruins had won the Cup then Krug would have been in the middle of the Conn Smythe discussion, but instead his spring performance just added to his current value headed into a contract year.

Given all of the above and the fact the Bruins don’t have anybody – Matt Grzelcyk may never be that guy and McAvoy hasn’t developed to that point as of yet -- ready to replace Krug’s offense, re-signing the 5-foot-8 undrafted D-man should be a priority. Krug had a career-high 30 points on the power play last season as the top unit quarterback and continues to be an aggressive, smart catalyst perfectly cast in Bruce Cassidy’s offense that caters to creativity and hockey intelligence.

Best of all, Krug is willing to take a hometown discount similar to the way Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak all took a little less to remain in Black and Gold.

It's a far cry from the $10 million-plus per season salaries doled out to Auston Matthews, John Tavares and Mitch Marner in Toronto, and Krug has made it clear he’s not looking to get every last nickel on the table when it comes to staying in Boston.

“Absolutely. I think that’s something each individual player takes into account with the situation that they’re in. The role that they play on each individual team, how good their team is and how good their team will be moving forward. [Those are all] things that I’ve definitely considered. We’ll see what happens,” said Krug. “There’s a fine between protecting yourself and what you bring to the table, and also being happy and living in a place that you love, and your family loves. I have a little girl that I have to think about now. All of these things sound cliché, but they are things you have to take into account and worry about. We’ll see what happens.”   

One thing is for sure: Krug is going to get paid somewhere. He may take a little less to keep the band together in Boston moving forward, but the seven-year, $53.025 million contract signed by Jared Spurgeon in Minnesota would seem like fair market value for Krug should he become a free agent on July 1. That’s obviously a long way from now and Sweeney and Co. will get every opportunity to come up with something fair that could keep Krug in Boston for the long haul.

But if Krug does get to free agency, he doesn’t exactly sound worried about that prospect either given the money and potential suitors that would be there vying for him.

“It’s a good problem to have, right? That being said my focus is on the Boston Bruins and the here and now, and hopefully getting some clarity [on his contract]. I’m well aware that what I do in this league is something that people want and desire, especially with the way that the game is moving,” said Krug. “The transition game is so crucial to team success and the power play helps you win hockey games in the regular season and in the playoffs. These are things that I do well and I’m sure would be things that a lot of teams would be happy to have. But I’m just worried about the Bruins here and now.”

The Bruins have said all along that they’re well aware of Krug’s importance to everything that they do on the ice. Now is a golden chance for the B’s to prove it by showing just how much of a priority it is to retain Krug beyond this season while the player is admittedly looking for “some clarity” on his future in Boston.

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Highlights from the Bruins' 3-1 win over the Flyers in preseason

Highlights from the Bruins' 3-1 win over the Flyers in preseason

FINAL SCORE: Bruins 3, Flyers 1

IN BRIEF: The Bruins grabbed their first win of the preseason in convincing fashion over the Flyers Thursday night. Danton Heinen, Peter Cehlarik and Connor Clifton netted goals for Boston in this one. 

BRUINS PRESEASON RECORD: 1-1-0

HIGHLIGHTS:

HEINEN STRIKES FIRST

HALAK WITH A CRAZY SAVE

FLYERS TIE THE GAME 

CEHLARIK PUT THE B'S BACK ON TOP

CONNOR CLIFTON MAKES IT 3-1

UP NEXT:

@ Blackhawks, Saturday, 8:30 p.m.
vs Flyers, Monday, 7:00 p.m., NHL Network 

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