Boston Bruins

Boston Bruins

Boston Bruins

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 28: Fabian Lysell #68 of the Boston Bruins skates against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on September 28, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

After a quick stop at Warrior Ice Arena on Wednesday, the Bruins’ rookies will be packing their bags and heading to Buffalo once again in what’s become an annual tradition of sorts, with the Bruins slated to once again participate in the 2023 Prospects Challenge at the HarborCenter.

It’s a Prospects Challenge that continues to grow, too, with the Bruins’ rookies slated to compete against rookies from the Sabres, Canadiens, Devils, Penguins, and Senators in the round-robin challenge. The participating teams will each play three games during the course of the event, which is being held entirely at the HarborCenter.

This year, that schedule will see the Bruins play the Penguins at 3:30 p.m. on Friday, the Habs in a 3:30 p.m. showdown the next day, and a 10 a.m. meeting with the Devils on Monday.

But what’s a showcase without players? And the Bruins addressed that part of it Tuesday, with the announcement of this year’s rookie camp roster, which will feature B’s prospects as well as seven camp invites.

(Note: This tournament will not feature any of Boston’s prospects currently playing in the NCAA ranks.)

  • Forwards

    NEW YORK, NEW YORK - OCTOBER 05: Fabian Lysell #21 of the Boston Bruins skates against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on October 05, 2022 in New York City. The Bruins defeated the Rangers 5-4. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

    NEW YORK, NEW YORK – OCTOBER 05: Fabian Lysell #21 of the Boston Bruins skates against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on October 05, 2022 in New York City. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

    Joey Abate: A 6-foot-1 wing, Abate scored three goals and six points in 35 games with Providence a year ago.

    John Beecher: Boston’s first-round pick in 2019, Beecher made the leap to the pro game in 2022, and has totaled 12 goals and 28 points, along with a plus-2 rating, in 70 games with the P-Bruins. The 6-foot-3 forward, who can play center and wing, could be a name to watch in training camp if the Bruins want to put an emphasis on speed when it comes to their bottom-six forward grouping.

    Julien Beland (camp invite): A 6-foot-4 left wing, Beland scored 29 goals and 52 points in 68 games for Rimouski Oceanic last season. The 20-year-old has scored 39 goals and totaled 81 points in 124 QMJHL games over the last two seasons.

    John Farinacci: One of the top NCAA free agents last month, Farinacci chose to sign with the Bruins after a collegiate career spent just down the road at Harvard. A 6-foot, 185-pound right shot, Farinacci is turning pro after a three-year run at Harvard, with 25 goals and 61 points in 79 games with the Crimson from 2019 through 2023. Farinacci’s 2022-23 campaign included five goals and 19 points in 20 games, as Farinacci dealt with a herniated disc that ultimately required surgery and prevented him from making his season debut until Jan. 13.

    Ty Halaburda (camp invite): Listed at 5-foot-11 and 178 pounds, the 18-year-old Halaburda will join the Bruins for rookie camp following a 2022-23 campaign that featured 21 goals and 37 points in 66 games for WHL Vancouver.

    Curtis Hall: Selected with a fourth-round pick (No. 119 overall) in 2018, Hall is still looking to find his footing in the pro game, and reports to camp with just four goals and 10 points in 102 AHL games over the last three seasons. Hall did score five goals in eight games with ECHL Maine a year ago.

    Brett Harrison: A third-round pick in 2021, Brett Harrison is turning pro after an OHL career that featured 82 goals and 167 points in 180 games between Oshawa and Windsor. And though Harrison is a natural center and likely projects there for the Bruins, the current plan is for the B’s to put Harrison on the wing for the start of his pro career with Providence.

    Trevor Kuntar: The jump into the pro game is officially here for 2020 third-round pick Trevor Kuntar, who decided to leave Boston College for the Bruins earlier this year. The 22-year-old Kuntar’s jump to the pro game also comes on the heels of a year that featured a career-high 13 goals, 16 assists, and 29 points in 34 games for Boston College. Overall, Kuntar compiled 28 goals and 59 points in 93 games with the Eagles over three years.

    Fabian Lysell: 2021 first-round pick Fabian Lysell learned some hard lessons in his first year on North American pro ice last season. But healthier and with an improved offseason program, Lysell is ready to put that behind him and challenge for a spot on the Black and Gold’s NHL roster in 2023-24. This is a tournament that Lysell should dominate, to be honest. It could be the kickstart he needs heading into camp, too.

    Adam Mechura (camp invite): The Czechia-born forward stands at 6-foot-4 and is coming off a 2022-23 year that included 26 goals and 52 points in 58 game for the WHL’s Tri-City Americans.

    Georgii Merkulov: This is another name to watch when it comes to a potential NHL roster spot in 2023-24. Signed by the Bruins after just one season at Ohio State, Merkulov was certainly impressive in his first full AHL season, with 24 goals and 55 points in 67 games played. His 24goals were the second-most among all AHL rookies, while his 55 points ranked second among that group. The 5-foot-10 Russian forward’s biggest knock is his defensive game, but it’s believed that he’s made some strides on that front since the last time we saw him.

    Owen Pederson: Signed to an AHL deal earlier this offseason, Pederson will make the jump to the pro game after scoring a career-high 32 goals and 74 points in 65 games with the WHL’s Winnipeg Ice this past season. Pederson’s 32 goals, which tied him for the 26th-most in the WHL this past season, was a solid 15-goal bump up from his 2021-22 total, and a four-goal boost from his previous career-high set in 2019-20. His 74 points, meanwhile, ranked sixth among Ice skaters, and was a 24-point increase from his previous career-high of 50 points, which was also set during the 2019-20 season.

    Matt Poitras: There’s certainly a lot of hype when it comes to 2022 second-round pick Matt Poitras. Considered the next hope for a top-six center solution, Poitras is coming off a 2022-23 season that featured 95 points (fifth-most in the OHL) and 79 assists (second-most in the OHL). Given his age, it’s either Boston or back to the O for Poitras in 2023-24.

    Luke Toporowski: With Providence on an AHL-only deal this past year, the feisty 24-year-old wing tallied 15 goals and 29 points, along with a plus-8 rating, in 47 games for the P-Bruins. He parlayed that into a standard, NHL contract with the club earlier this summer.

  • Defensemen

    Oct 7, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes defenseman Mason Lohrei (6) takes a shot during the NCAA men's hockey game against the Wisconsin Badgers at the Schottenstein Center. Mandatory Credit: Adam Cairns-The Columbus Dispatch

    Oct 7, 2022; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes defenseman Mason Lohrei (6) takes a shot during the NCAA men’s hockey game against the Wisconsin Badgers at the Schottenstein Center. (Adam Cairns/The Columbus Dispatch)

    Frederic Brunet: The 20-year-old, left-shooting D put up 16 goals and 73 points in 68 QMJHL games last season, and added two assists in his lone AHL appearance of the season. The 6-foot-3 defender is slated to play the 2023-24 season with Victoriaville Tigres, but is certainly showing signs of being a find for the B’s.

    Mike Callahan: The Franklin, Mass. native put up one goal and eight points in 55 games with AHL Providence a season ago, and has two goals and 10 points in 70 AHL appearances over the last two seasons.

    Jackson Edward: Boston’s seventh-round selection in 2022, the 6-foot-3 Edward scored five goals and 22 points in 65 games for OHL London last season, and had six points in 19 playoff games. The Bruins are pleased with his progression to date, and are hopeful that the 19-year-old can take yet another leap in what’s always been a slow-and-steady kind of program with the Knights.

    Mason Lohrei: The second-best pro prospect behind Lysell, Lohrei led all Ohio State defensemen in points with 32 in 40 games as a sophomore in the 2022-23 season, and also led the team to a quarterfinal appearance in the NCAA tournament. Lohrei then signed an ATO with the P-Bruins in March, and recorded one assist and five shots on goal in five games before appearing in three Calder Cup playoff games for the club.

    Ryan Mast: The 6-foot-4, 212-pound Mast has graduated from the OHL after a 2022-23 season that featured eight goals and 30 points in 51 games for OHL Sarnia, and will play the 2023-24 season with the P-Bruins.

    Ethan Ritchie: Signed to a one-year AHL contract for the 2023-24 season, Ritchie put up 13 goals and 44 points in 65 games for OHL Sarnia last year.

    Grayden Siepmann (camp invite): A 5-foot-11, right-shooting defenseman, Siepmann put up nine goals and 43 points in 61 games for WHL Calgary last season, and has recorded 18 goals and 70 points in 148 games for the Hitmen over the last three seasons.

    Blake Smith (camp invite): The 18-year-old Smith, who stands at 6-foot-4, comes to Bruins rookie camp on the heels of a 2022-23 season that featured six assists in 41 games for the Flint Firebirds of the OHL.

  • Goalies

    MONTREAL, QC - NOVEMBER 05: A detail of the Boston Bruins logo is seen during the second period against the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre on November 5, 2019 in Montreal, Canada. The Montreal Canadiens defeated the Boston Bruins 5-4. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

    A detail of the Boston Bruins logo on a player’s sweater during a game. (Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

    William Rousseau (camp invite): The 20-year-old comes to B’s camp after posting a 35-8-1 record, along with a .908 save percentage and 2.22 goals against average, in 47 games with QMJHL Quebec in 2022-23.

    Samuel St.-Hilaire (camp invite): A rookie for QMJHL Sherbrooke last season, St-Hilaire posted 21 wins and a 2.30 goals against average in 29 appearances.

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