Boston Bruins

Boston Bruins

Boston Bruins

Oct 3, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Bruins defenseman Mason Lohrei (6) celebrates a goal by left wing James van Riemsdyk (21) during the first period against the Washington Capitals at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

And just like that, and with two roster moves Monday night, training camp has officially come to a close for the Bruins.

After countless rounds of waiver cuts and reassignments from Boston to Providence, the Bruins made their last two moves ahead of the 5 p.m. deadline Monday, with bottom-six forward Patrick Brown and top defensive prospect Mason Lohrei officially assigned to Providence.


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Bruins lose A.J. Greer to the waiver wire


  • Brown’s assignment to Providence came after the 31-year-old officially cleared waivers Monday after being placed on the waiver wire over the weekend. The same could not be said fellow bottom-six forward A.J. Greer, who joined Brown as Boston’s waiver-wire cuts Sunday, as the 26-year-old Greer was claimed by Calgary.

    Lohrei, meanwhile, will report to Providence after spending all of training camp with the Bruins, and after practicing with the big club and participating in ‘Media Day’ on Monday.

    Lohrei’s push was a strong one, too, with the B’s front office outright admitting as much.

  • Oct. 3, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Bruins defenseman Mason Lohrei (6) gets set for a face-off during overtime against the Washington Capitals at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

    Oct. 3, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Bruins defenseman Mason Lohrei (6) gets set for a face-off during overtime against the Washington Capitals at TD Garden. (Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports)

  • “Mason [Lohrei]  has made our decisions really difficult,” Bruins general manager Don Sweeney said prior to Lohrei’s demotion. “He’s played well. Again, we’ve put him in similar situations with [Matthew] Poitras and playing them up and down the lineup and in situations that again, on the back end, you’re not going to get hit and you’re going to get exposed, if anything. He’s logged a lot of minutes.

    “We continue to work on his habits without the puck. I think everybody starts to see the talent and the vision that he has the creativity, the confidence to be able to execute offensively. Whether that’s from his own goal line or the offensive blue line. The biggest adjustment to the National Hockey League is really defending against the top players and any players National Hockey League because they lean on you, and they press you. Mason’s going to have to continue to go through that. There’ll be some growing pains associated with it.”

  • Sept. 26, 2023; Buffalo, New York, USA; Boston Bruins defenseman Mason Lohrei (6) looks for the puck during the first period against the Buffalo Sabres at KeyBank Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

    Sept. 26, 2023; Buffalo, New York, USA; Boston Bruins defenseman Mason Lohrei (6) looks for the puck during the first period against the Buffalo Sabres at KeyBank Center. (Timothy T. Ludwig/USA TODAY Sports)

  • And in a move that’s ultimately not all that surprising, the Bruins have decided that the 6-foot-4 Lohrei will go through those bumps in Providence before Boston.

    For as good as Lohrei was during the preseason (and he was pretty damn good), there were still many times where the ‘green’ areas of his game came to the table. Whether that was handling pucks, the speed of his decision making, or handling physicality, it was obvious that Lohrei still has things to work on to round his game at the top level the game of hockey has to offer.

    There’s an also an element of the Bruins looking to fast track Lohrei in terms of his in-game experience, and particularly when it comes to his ability to play all situations and log big minutes. That was not going to be the case for Lohrei in Boston, especially on the man advantage with Charlie McAvoy, Hampus Lindholm, and Kevin Shattenkirk all looking like established power-play options for the B’s. It also didn’t seem like the Bruins had a rather high interest in Lohrei logging anything other than top-four pairing minutes.

    There’s a sense that the Bruins want to accelerate the Lohrei timeline, but that they wanna make sure that when he comes up, it’s for good and it’s with him being a major player for the club. Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery by all means said as much during an on-the-bench interview with TNT’s Darren Pang last week, saying that Lohrei was either going to be on the Opening Night roster or be with the B’s later in the season.

    In the now, however, Lohrei’s demotion does mean that the B’s will begin their campaign with a left-side defense corps featuring Matt Grzelcyk, Hampus Lindholm, and Derek Forbort. Ian Mitchell, meanwhile, will be the team’s No. 7 defenseman when things get underway on Wednesday night.

  • Sep 24, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Bruins center Patrick Brown (38) faces off against New York Rangers center Filip Chytil (72) during the second period at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

    Sep 24, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Bruins center Patrick Brown (38) faces off against New York Rangers center Filip Chytil (72) during the second period at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

  • Brown’s clearing of the waiver wire and Lohrei’s demotion also sets up Brown as a potential call-up option for the club as their 13th forward prior to Wednesday’s season-opening meeting with the Blackhawks.

    Montgomery and the Bruins do like Brown’s versatility and faceoff prowess, and as a result of Brown going unclaimed, he can be recalled and shuttled back and forth between Boston and Providence for the next little while without the worry of waivers being back on the table.

    The Bruins could also make the decision to sign Danton Heinen, who remains with the club on a professional tryout agreement, to a contract prior to Opening Night. (This is what the club did with defenseman Anton Stralman following his PTO run with the club last season.)

    The Bruins will have two more skates prior to kicking things off against the Blackhawks on Wednesday night, beginning with Tuesday’s 11 a.m. practice at Brighton’s Warrior Ice Arena.

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