BOSTON — In case you missed it, Phil Kessel claimed during his introductory press conference with Toronto that he never asked to be traded. Maybe he’s right. Maybe he never technically asked and his agent did. That would shock me. For complete coverage of the end of the Kessel affair, go to

As for the Bruins, they suffered a lackluster loss to the New York Rangers at TD Garden today, 5-2.

Despite their first exhibition loss, there were some positives for the Bruins.

Zach Hamill continued to look solid centering a skill line.

Marc Savard looked strong and, more important, came through the game healthy. Marco Sturm also looked strong.

•There’s no way Steve Begin will avoid being a popular Bruin. He came to another teammates’ defense tonight — his second preseason fight. This guy plays with relentless grit and physicality.

On the down side:

Tim Thomas’ first game in five months looked just like that. There were some funny bounces, but his reaction time was about a second or two off.

Jeff Penner was deked all the way to Providence by Artem Anisimov on a shorthanded Rangers goal. The Bruins have now allowed two shorthanded goals in the preseason.

•Milan Lucic received a game misconduct on top of a spearing penalty later in the second period.