As the Bruins have turned their focus in recent years to draft-and-development as an NHL organization, the annual Bruins Development Camp has taken on more importance and a higher profile among yearly events.
Some years have been more memorable than others, of course. Who could forget the 2010 camp when Tyler Seguin made his first appearance in Bruins gear, or in 2014 when an 18-year-old David Pastrnak showed off the jaw-dropping skill that’s turned him into one of the best young players in the NHL?
But every summer the best and brightest of Boston’s prospects, draft picks and young players they’d like to get a better look at will convene at the Bruins practice rink, and give fans, media and management types alike a much closer look at their developing games.
This time around the Bruins will invite 29 players to the development camp that begins on Tuesday at Warrior Ice Arena including the five players draft last weekend in Dallas, and interestingly enough also including 28-year-old Martin Bakos after he was signed out of the Czech Republic a few weeks ago. The prospects expected to draw the most interest will be B’s top forward prospect Jack Studnicka, 2017 first round pick Urho Vaakanainen and a couple of European players in Oskar Steen and Joona Koppanen that really impressed with their play for Team Sweden and Team Finland respectively in last winter’s World Junior tournament.
While there will be plenty of curiosity about the progress of Vaakanainen’s game as he plans on playing most likely in Providence this season, most of the eyeballs will be on the new youngsters getting introduced to the Bruins way after hearing their names called at the draft last weekend.
“We’ll get those kids into development camp,” said Don Sweeney, of the five young players selected last weekend on the second day of the draft. “It’s a quick turnaround this year and we get a chance to evaluate some of them and welcome them aboard.”
There’s no word on which members of the Bruins management group will even be in Boston for development camps opening day on Tuesday as the B’s will be sending a contingent to the West Coast to sit down and pitch John Tavares on the finer points of being a Bruin.
Here’s the roster for the development camp that’s open to the public and begins at 11 a.m. on Tuesday morning at Warrior Arena:
BOSTON BRUINS 2018 DEVELOPMENT CAMP ROSTER:
(Players are listed in alphabetical order by last name, * denotes a camp invite)
Forwards: Martin Bakos, Stephen Baylis*, Jack Becker, Henry Bowlby*, Mitchell Fossier*, Curtis Hall, Joona Koppanen, Karson Kuhlman, Philip Lagunov*, Jakub Lauko, Tom Marchin*, Cedric Pare, Pavel Shen, Oskar Steen, Jack Studnicka, Colin Theisen*
Defensemen: Nick Albano*, Axel Andersson, Philip Beaulieu*, Victor Berglund, Daniel Bukac, Lucas Ekestahl-Jonsson*, Teemu Kivihalme*, Dustyn McFaul, Urho Vaakanainen, Nick Wolff*
Goaltenders: Kyle Keyser, Jeremy Swayman, Dan Vladar