Outdoor conditions could mean a Winter Classic ‘chess match’


FOXBOROUGH — The sun was shining as the Boston Bruins practiced this morning at Gillette Stadium.

And the glare was glaring.

“You notice it big time,” said Bruins defenseman Torey Krug. “Even when we were scrimmaging a bit, you make a quick move in the corner, you’re turning, you’re trying to find bodies, you’ve got to take a second to adjust. It’s tough to track the puck in the corners a bit, but both teams have to play with it.”

The glare may be less of a factor once Friday’s Winter Classic against the Montreal Canadiens gets going. The B’s practiced today at 11 a.m. Tomorrow’s game won’t start until after 1 p.m., at which point the stadium will start casting its shadow over the ice surface. There may be some cloud cover, too.

Still, Krug expects the conditions — whether it’s sun or wind or whatever tomorrow may bring — to be a factor.

“The conditions change the way you have to approach the game,” he said. “Our team really benefits from a simple style of game anyway. We try to do that regardless of what venue we’re in, but you really have to simplify. That’s taking care of the puck. It’s almost like a chess match, waiting for someone else to make a mistake, and then you have to jump on that opportunity and take advantage when it happens.”

As for the ice, Krug said it “held up pretty well,” though it was “a little bit slow” and “sticky.”

The latest forecast for Friday afternoon is a mix of sun and cloud.

The more cloud the better.