PROVIDENCE — Coming off a winless opening weekend, the Providence Bruins are back at it in practice this week as they prepare for their first three-in-three weekend of the season.
Coach Jay Leach liked Tuesday morning’s session. “There were some plays out there,’’ he said.
Some sparks flew, too. At one point, Anton Blidh knocked off Trent Frederic’s helmet, angering Frederic before cooler heads prevailed. At the end of practice, on the P-Bruins logo at center ice, Blidh and Frederic talked as they led the stretch.
After playing catch up all night in Friday’s loss in Hartford, the P-Bruins led for most of Saturday’s game against Laval before losing on a last-minute goal.
“Laval was very good. They were physical. They were a little older than us. They worked. It was a tough game for us. We had moments where we were good and we had some sustained pressure and then we had moments where we were just holding on for dear life,’’ Leach said.
“They ultimately deserved to win the game. We were up, 2-0, but they outchanced us handily.’’
Before the opener, Leach stressed that a coach never knows what he has until the real games start.
“The only proper way to evaluate where your team is is to just dive in. We had some success last year. We had some success in the preseason. But it doesn’t make a difference when you start playing the real games,’’ Leach said.
“We’ve got work to do. We’ve got younger players playing in different roles, expanded roles. They’ve got to learn how to do that. Tommy Cross isn’t logging 28 minutes (on defense) any more. Guys have got to eat some of those minutes, those younger players. Our guys are competitive and they work. They want to get better.’’
Providence visits Hartford on Friday; has a rematch with the Wolf Pack at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center on Saturday night; then plays in Springfield on Sunday afternoon.