The Bruins welcomed back two of their five Olympians Monday, with Zdeno Chara and David Krejci returning to the team from Sochi, Russia. Chara said they got back to the United States Friday, flying from Sochi to Newark.
Both players faced rather disappointing results in Sochi, with Chara’s Slovakia team losing to Krejci’s Czech Republic team in the qualifying round, then the Czech Republic falling to the US in the quarterfinals.
Chara also faces the fact that these could have been his third and final Olympics, considering his age (37 in March) and the uncertainty regarding NHL participation in South Korea in 2018.
“You have to take advantage of the experience and you never know when you’re going to be able to either go or if Slovakia is going to be able to qualify, so it could have been possibly the last one,” Chara said. “So you want to make the best of it.”
And all that talk about accommodations?
“Everything was really, really good and really made it so easy to get around and you could feel really comfortable right away,” Chara said. “Didn’t feel at all like you were somewhere in Russia.”
Now the focus turns back to the Bruins and their return to play Wednesday in Buffalo. Both players said they had some jet lag after their return from Sochi, especially after getting on the ice at TD Garden this morning.
“I’ve been back a couple days, but I have been to bed really early and waking up early so it’s a little bit different,” Krejci said. “First day on the ice today I was really tired. I’m not going to hide that, but still got two days before the first game. Hopefully I’ll get back.”
The rest of the Bruins who participated in the Olympics -- Patrice Bergeron, Tuukka Rask, and Loui Eriksson -- are not expected to participate in practice Tuesday before the team travels to Buffalo, according to assistant coach Geoff Ward.