Jay Pandolfo reported to work every day for a month, did his job diligently and never uttered a word of complaint — even though he wasn’t being paid a dime.
“I loved coming to the rink every day,” Pandolfo said.
It was that attitude and dedication, along with his still-useful skills, that prompted the Bruins to sign the 38-year-old former New Jersey Devils forward from Burlington to a one-year, two-way contract worth $600,000 at the NHL level yesterday.
“I judged this on what I’ve seen in the past and I judged it on him wanting to stay here with the team while we decided (whether to sign him),” B’s general manager Peter Chiarelli said prior to last night’s game at the Garden against the New York Rangers. “I think that shows a commitment on his part. And we could see a compatibility just watching how he was with the guys. The chemistry is important and he comes highly recommended that way — from (coach) Claude (Julien) having had him (while in New Jersey) and other people who know him.”
A veteran of 881 NHL games over 14 seasons (100 goals, 126 assists) and a key, versatile contributor on two Stanley Cup teams, the former Boston University star will be thrilled to don the Bruins uniform.
“I’m really excited,” Pandolfo said. “I was hoping this day was going to come. Now it’s here. I’m really excited to be part of this organization.”
Pandolfo may go to Providence for a conditioning assignment of a game or two, after not playing since last April.
“He’s a good vet,” Chiarelli said. “He doesn’t have to play all the time, because he knows his role. In the past we’ve added these guys — added them for chemistry and for utility. He was a good candidate. He can still really skate. He’s a useful player still.”
Jay Pandolfo sticks around
Boston Herald | Feb 13