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NEWS

Brunner suits up for Devils practice

Tuesday, 09.17.2013 / 4:17 PM / News
By Eric Marin
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Brunner suits up for Devils practice
On his first day at Devils practice, free agent forward Damien Brunner was thrown right into the mix. \r\n\r\n\"The legs were there, but the hands were a little bit stiff,\" Brunner said.\r\n\r\nThe 27-year-old was featured on the right wing of a line with Patrik Elias at center and Dainius Zubrus, and practiced the power play on a unit with Travis Zajac and prospect Reid Boucher.\r\n\r\nBrunner, who arrived Monday as a pro tryout, is getting a close look as a potential asset for the Devils\' offense. He\'s likely to be in the lineup on Thursday, when the Islanders visit for a preseason tilt at Prudential Center. \r\n



 
On his first day at Devils practice, free agent forward Damien Brunner was thrown right into the mix.

The 27-year-old was featured on the right side of a line with Patrik Elias at center and Dainius Zubrus, and practiced the power play on a unit with Travis Zajac and prospect Reid Boucher.

"The legs were there, but the hands were a little bit stiff," Brunner said.

Brunner, who arrived Monday on a pro tryout, is getting a close look as a potential asset for the Devils' offense. He's possible for Thursday, when the Devils continue the preseason schedule against the Islanders at Prudential Center.

After putting up 26 points (12 goals, 14 assists) in 44 games with Detroit last season, then adding nine points (5 goals, 4 assists) in 14 playoff contests, the Zurich native still wants to show the Devils that he can contribute.

"That's where I have to make an impression: to create offense and make some good plays and try to shoot the puck as much as I can," he said. "We'll see how that goes eventually on Thursday."

If he signs, Brunner would join Jaromir Jagr, Ryane Clowe, Rostislav Olesz and Michael Ryder among the club's new faces at forward.

"When change is made, it's always nice to be a part of a new group and bring some new energy in," he said. "Obviously, like I said [Monday], the Devils are a first-class organization. You already can feel it by only being here one day and I hope it all turns out well."

Head coach Peter DeBoer saw positive signs in Brunner's first day on ice and didn't rule him out for Thursday.

"Pretty savvy guy," DeBoer said. "He's got some skill, he's always moving. He's got a good stick. He looks like a good offensive player."

Could Brunner help bolster the power play?

"I don't think there's any mistaking what he is," said DeBoer. "He's here to bring speed and bring some offense and bring some creativity."

• Jagr, who has not skated since training camp opened last Thursday, could be closer to a return.

"He looks better and he's talking about skating here in the next 24 hours," DeBoer said.

• Clowe and Ryder have been together on a line for much of camp, but DeBoer said not to look too much into the forward combinations at camp thus far.

"It's too early to plug these guys into holes," he said. "There's heavy competition for roster spots and then depending on who makes it, then we'll fill in guys in their appropriate spots."

Tuesday's morning session:

Ryane Clowe - Travis Zajac - Michael Ryder
Dainius Zubrus - Patrik Elias - Damien Brunner
Rostislav Olesz - Andrei Loktionov -
Mattias Tedenby - Jacob Josefson - Stefan Matteau
Ryan Carter
- Stephen Gionta - Reid Boucher

Bryce Salvador - Marek Zidlicky
Andy Greene
- Adam Larsson
Alexander Urbom
- Damon Severson
Eric Gelinas
- Jon Merrill

Martin Brodeur
Scott Wedgewood

PP units:

Clowe - Elias - Ryder
Gelinas - Zidlicky

Boucher - Zajac - Brunner
Greene - Larsson

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 MTL 62 41 16 5 171 135 87
2 NYI 64 41 21 2 205 179 84
3 NYR 61 38 17 6 192 152 82
4 TBL 63 38 19 6 207 167 82
5 DET 61 35 15 11 180 159 81
6 PIT 61 35 17 9 176 152 79
7 WSH 63 33 20 10 184 159 76
8 BOS 62 31 22 9 165 161 71
9 FLA 62 27 22 13 150 175 67
10 PHI 63 27 25 11 168 183 65
11 OTT 60 27 23 10 171 163 64
12 NJD 63 26 27 10 141 164 62
13 CBJ 61 26 31 4 157 191 56
14 CAR 61 24 30 7 142 162 55
15 TOR 62 25 32 5 170 189 55
16 BUF 63 19 39 5 123 212 43

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
M. Cammalleri 51 23 10 4 33
A. Henrique 56 12 20 -1 32
P. Elias 53 10 16 -13 26
S. Gomez 39 5 18 -9 23
M. Zidlicky 63 4 19 -7 23
T. Zajac 55 10 10 -4 20
S. Bernier 48 10 8 1 18
M. Ryder 44 6 12 -2 18
A. Larsson 45 2 16 3 18
M. Havlat 38 5 9 -12 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Schneider 23 23 6 .927 2.19
K. Kinkaid 3 4 3 .915 2.59