It’s back to life, back to reality for Boston Bruins defenseman Matt Hunwick.
Entering his second full NHL season, this will be Hunwick’s best shot to be a regular fixtured on the Bruins’ blue line. And, more importantly, the splenectomy he underwent last spring — which kept him out of action during the final three games of the Montreal series and the entire Carolina series — is as far in the rear-view mirror as possible.
“(I have to do) nothing different than anyone else. If I do get sick, I’ll just make sure I take care of it quickly,” said Hunwick, who said he’s just about back to the weight he started last season. “Day to day, everything is just as it was last year.”
Offseason tidbit: Although his offseason regimen was delayed a bit as he continued to recover from his injury, Hunwick got to work out at his alma mater Michigan with a number of former alums.
Position battle: The Bruins’ offseason moves were definitely geared toward Hunwick, who played in just 53 games last season, moving into their top six. He’ll be competing with Andrew Ference and Mark Stuart for a spot in the top four, plus be battling for power-play time to best use his offensive gifts.
Projection: Assuming he doesn’t take a step back, Hunwick will be a fixture in the top six and should be a mainstay on the second power-play unit. Over the course of 82 games, he could surpass 40 points.