If not for last year’s NHL lockout Reilly Smith most likely would’ve started the season with the Dallas Stars. Instead he spent that time with the team’s AHL affiliate in Cedar Park Texas.
Making the jump from the AHL to the NHL can be a grueling and frustrating process. As Smith opens the 2013-14 season on the Bruins roster it gives the 22-year-old winger a bit of confidence that he’s finally made it.

But Smith who was acquired in the Tyler Seguin trade won’t get too complacent. He won a spot out of training camp but knows there’s more work to be done.

“You don’t really want to take that comfortability and make too much (out of it)” Smith said. “It’s kind of the same thing as last year where my biggest factor is trying to stay up (in the NHL). Making the team is one thing but one thing I want to do is stay with the team the whole year so that’s what I’m focused on right now.”
On July 4 Smith came to the Bruins with wingers Loui Eriksson and Matt Fraser plus defenseman Joe Morrow in a blockbuster deal for centers Seguin and Rich Peverley plus defenseman Ryan Button. With the talented Eriksson and future Hall of Famer Jarome Iginla on the roster Smith came into camp under the radar but has made the most of it.

He beat out Fraser Nick Johnson and Jordan Caron for a spot on the team’s third line alongside Chris Kelly and Carl Soderberg who missed last night’s opener with an ankle injury and was replaced by Caron.