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A breath of fresh heir at BU

Page 2 of 3 -- "John Cullen also wore No. 19 here," said Carpenter, noting Cullen's later NHL success. "No truth to the rumor that Chris will pull it off before the opening game and present it to Cully."

Only one Terrier number -- Travis Roy's 24 -- has been retired.

Health comes first
Ex-Bruin captain Jason Allison, who has missed the last season and a half with residual symptoms from severe whiplash, has met with Hurricanes management about possibly signing with Carolina. "It could be a good fit there," said Bryant McBride, Allison's Waltham-based agent. "And there are a couple of other places that would make a lot of sense, too." But according to McBride, the 29-year-old Allison doesn't want to sign anywhere until his conditioning is close to 100 percent. He has been symptom-free since April, said McBride, but he's adhering to medical advice that has him training at a very moderate pace, building up strength and endurance. "He's maniacal about two things right now: 1. returning to the NHL, and 2. following doctor's orders to the letter," said McBride. "Trying to hurry back before [in Los Angeles] he thinks set him way back. He wants to get to the point where he feels he can come back and dominate, and to do that he has to have the strength to skate around with guys clinging to his back all the time." Bet on Allison, once he's ready to return, ringing up old pal Pat Burns, his coach during better days here in the Hub of Hockey, about playing for the Devils . . . Robert Reichel, captain of the Czech Republic's squad in the upcoming World Cup, didn't have his $4 million option picked up by the Maple Leafs. Now 33, he'll do at least a one-year hitch with Chemopetrol Litvinov . . . Meanwhile, the Czechs will have to play through the emotional trauma of losing head coach Ivan Hlinka, killed last Sunday night when the car he was driving collided with a truck in the Czech Republic. Just hours earlier, the 54-year-old Hlinka had persuaded superstar Jaromir Jagr to suit up for the team. "He was a hero for our generation," said Jagr. Nearly a quarter-century ago, Hlinka was among the first Czechs to leave for the NHL, arriving in Vancouver with Jiri Bubla (father of Boston blue liner Jiri Slegr). Soon after Hlinka's death, the Czechs named ex-Bruin Vladimir Ruzicka to take over the bench for the World Cup. Ruzicka captained the '98 Czech squad that won the Olympic gold in Nagano. "Ivan was simply irreplaceable for us," said Ruzicka. "We all idolized him." . . . Bruins in the World Cup include Joe Thornton (Canada), Slegr (Czech Republic), Sergei Samsonov and Sergei Gonchar (Russia), P.J. Axelsson (Sweden), and Hal Gill (US) . . . A late addition for the Russian squad: Andrei Kovalenko, whose NHL career came to an end (2000-01) in a Bruins sweater. Kovalenko, a.k.a. The Empty Tank, has played the last three seasons in Russia . . . Three other former Boston forwards -- Bill Guerin, Brian Rolston, and Bryan Smolinski -- will suit up for the Yanks.   Continued...

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