Ondrej Kase makes his first impression in Boston
The Boston Bruins got their first look at Ondrej Kase on Monday during his first practice in Brighton.
Sporting No. 28, Kase, who came to Boston in exchange for David Backes, Axel Andersson and a 2020 first-round draft pick, skated with David Krejci and Jake DeBrusk on the second line. His enthusiastic approach took center stage during his on-ice session and his first interview with the Boston media.
“I’m very happy [to be here], I’m very excited,” Kase said after practice. “I think it’s probably the best organization where I can be.”
The 24-year-old admittingly felt nervous meeting his new teammates for the first time. Those nerves weren’t there for long after the tight-knit Boston locker room welcomed him with open arms.
“They do a pretty good vetting process here,” forward Sean Kuraly said of his new teammate. “I don’t even think anymore. We’ve come to a point where you’re pretty confident that one they will be a good hockey player and two a good person.”
Bruce Cassidy isn’t sure if Kase will be ready to make his debut Tuesday night against Calgary. But the fourth-year bench-boss acknowledged that Sweeney made the Kase trade to prepare the team for the postseason.
Even with his initial uncertain playing status, Kase already made a good first impression on his teammate. Kase and Kuraly spent the morning getting to know one another as new stalemates inside Warrior Ice Arena.
“Really good guy,” Kuraly added about Kase. “It’s not too tough to make a good first impression and he has and you listen to what other guys have said about him and for me. That’s what kind of solidifies the type of player and person he is when having other players vouch for him.”
The Bruins need Kase to help elevate their secondary scoring entering the final two months of the season.
The coaching staff appears to have a great amount of trust in Kase after placing him on the second line in his first practice. Sweeney and company felt comfortable enough with Kase’s addition to send a struggling Danton Heinen to Anaheim in a separate deal for Nick Ritchie shortly after practice.