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Jim Montgomery keeps talking about Patrice Bergeron like he's back with Bruins

BOSTON -- Patrice Bergeron remains unsigned, which is starting to cause some concern among Bruins fans. But the new head coach in Boston is certainly making it sound like Bergeron will be back for a 19th season with the B's.

Jim Montgomery said in his introductory press conference that Bergeron was the first player that he called after he landed the job in Boston. He's since made comments that with Bergeron around, he doesn't have to worry too much about the Boston dressing room.

It made it sound like Bergeron's return is all but certain. Montgomery continued to beat that drum Tuesday during an interview on the TSN 1200 Morning show in Ottawa. When asked to compare what it was like when he took over the Dallas Stars in 2018 to what it's like taking over the Bruins now, Montgomery once again brought up Bergeron's leadership with the team.

"Every time you go into a situation, every player's wondering with a new coach: Where do I fit in this guy's plans and they're waiting to see what you can do as far as preparation, as far as motivation and as far as how you can help them be the best version of themselves," Montgomery said, via Jimmy Murphy of Boston Hockey Now.

"Ultimately as a coach, what you're trying to do is push players to be their best individually so collectively we're as good as we can be, and the thing that I know, after talking to Patrice Bergeron a couple of times now, is that there's no question I don't have to worry about what's going on in the locker room," Montgomery added.

When the hosts asked if Montgomery was confirming that Bergeron would be back, the head coach would only say: "Good try!" 

It has long been assumed that Bergeron will be back to captain the Bruins next season. The same goes for David Krejci, with both players expected to sign incentive-laden contracts for the 2022-23 season. The Bruins need to clear some cap space to sign the two players, which is likely causing the delay in anything becoming official.

It was just last week that Bergeron told TVA Sports in Montreal that he was still deciding on his future. But a few days later he reached out to Pavel Zacha after he was acquired by Boston, which sounds like something someone would do if they intend on playing next season.

Meanwhile, the B's ' new head coach continues to make it sound like he will have Bergeron to help lead the way in his first season with the team. That should alleviate any concerns among fans that the Bruins may be without their captain next season.

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