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Entries with the tag: boston bruins

Bruins, City Of Boston Honor Willie O’Ree

As Sportsnet illustrates, the Boston Bruins honored Willie O'Ree prior to the Bruins-Canadiens game on Wednesday...

And, per the Associated Press:

Hockey pioneer Willie O'Ree was honored in Boston on Wednesday, the eve of the 60th anniversary of the Bruins forward breaking the NHL's color barrier.

At a news conference at the TD Garden before the Bruins game against the Montreal Canadiens, Mayor Marty Walsh declared Jan. 18, 2018, to be "Willie O'Ree Day". O'Ree made his debut in 1958 during a 3-0 victory against the Canadiens at the Forum in Montreal.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, willie+o'ree

Rene Rancourt To Retire At End Of Season

From the Associated Press:

Rene Rancourt, the tuxedoed troubadour who has sung the national anthem before Boston Bruins games for more than 40 years, announced on Wednesday that he will retire at the end of the season.

The 78-year-old trained opera singer began singing the "Star-Spangled Banner" at Red Sox games and took over the U.S. and Canadian anthems at Bruins games during the 1975-76 season. He ends his performance with a signature fist pump he modeled after Bruins forward Randy Burridge.

Rancourt performed the anthem on April 17, 2013, for the first sporting event in the city after the Boston Marathon bombing. He sang the first few words and then allowed the crowd to take over.

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  Tags: boston+bruins

Willie O’Ree Celebrates 60th Anniversary Of NHL Debut

From NHL.com's Amalie Benjamin:

It was 60 years ago this week when [Willie] O'Ree got the call from the Boston Bruins, notifying him that they would like to bring him up for a pair of games against the Montreal Canadiens, the first on Jan. 18 at the Montreal Forum, a place that O'Ree had played in multiple times.

But never like this.

"I took the train up to Montreal, met the team, met Milt Schmidt the coach, and we sat down," said O'Ree, now 82 years old. "He said, 'Willie, we brought you up because you could add a little something to the team.' He said, 'Don't worry about anything else. The Bruins organization is behind you 100 percent. Just go out and play your game.'"

Continued

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  Tags: boston+bruins, milt+schmidt, willie+o'ree

Bruins Rask-less giong into game vs. Vancouver

From NBC Sports Boston's Joe Haggerty:

The string of injuries for the Bruins continues as Tuukka Rask (upper body) is out for tonight’s game against the Vancouver Canucks at TD Garden after getting trucked by Anders Bjork in practice Wednesday.

Rask was wobbly-legged while being helped off the ice after the violent collision and the 21-year-old Bjork looked like he’d also needed a couple of stitches on his chin after bloodying his practice jersey.

The big concern is Rask still being evaluated by Bruins medical personnel for a possible concussion. It will be Anton Khudobin stepping in place for him against the Canucks with Providence Bruins netminder Zane McIntyre serving as his backup.

“Tuukka is out tonight. He’s going to get reevaluated today and we’ll have a better idea tomorrow,” said Bruce Cassidy. “Anton will start [against the Canucks].”

Continued

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  Tags: anton+khudobin, boston+bruins, bruce+cassidy, tuukka+rask

No news is no news regarding Tuukka Rask

From NHL.com:

Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask had to be helped off the ice after rookie forward Anders Bjork collided with him in front of the net during practice Wednesday.

Rask did not return and there was no immediate word on his condition. The Bruins play the Vancouver Canucks at TD Garden on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; SN360, TVA Sports, NESN, NHL.TV).

"He left early obviously," coach Bruce Cassidy told the Bruins website. "We had a line-rush drill where there was some contact around the net. He'll get evaluated. I've got nothing right now; hopefully he's fine. Until he gets checked out, I don't know. That's where it's at right now."

Bjork appeared to be knocked off balance before the collision. Teammates immediately rushed to Rask's assistance and he was helped off the ice after a couple of minutes.

"It was incidental contact on a hard drill," Cassidy said. "We're trying to build in more net action and net drive. I guess that's the spillover from it sometimes."

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  Tags: boston+bruins, bruce+cassidy, tuukka+rask

Friedman on early-season jitters

Among Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman's "30 Thoughts":

There’s a GM who has one of the best lines I’ve ever heard about life in sports: “There are only two moods — winning and hell.”

In conversations over the last week, one theme stood out: This league is tense.

“Well, it’s always tense,” one executive laughed. “But even more than normal for this early.”

Various coaches, players, execs and media said they could see it in places like Arizona (winless after some good summer moves), Boston (injuries and a slow start, despite talented young players), Minnesota (injuries and expectation), Montreal (losses and intense local pressure), New York Rangers (roster in transition), Vancouver (attendance), Washington (organizational pressure) and Winnipeg (rough start before three straight wins).

Watching the Rangers’ last two games, I don’t think I’ve ever seen Alain Vigneault look so stressed. Until their young prospects — Lias Andersson and Filip Chytil — are ready, they’ll be thin at centre. And in the Metropolitan division, it’s very hard to win like that as Pittsburgh proved on Tuesday night.

I’m sure it’s similar in other sports, but one of the biggest changes over the years is the decrease in early-season optimism. It used to last 10 games. Not anymore. I’m not one to complain about the stresses of my job; I always think of Hyman Roth in Godfather II: “This is the business we’ve chosen.”

But pro sports takes its toll, and you can already see it.

Friedman continues at length...

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  Tags: boston+bruins, minnesota+wild, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, phoenix+coyotes, washington+capitals, winnipeg+jets

Bruins win on last-second deflected goal

The Boston Bruins defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 2-1 today, on a last-second goal by Drew Stafford, who scored on a deflection off Brandon Manning:

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  Tags: boston+bruins, brandon+manning, drew+stafford, philadelphia+flyers

On the trade deadline from a player’s point of view

From ESPN's Joe McDonald:

Drew Stafford hadn't seen his wife, Hali, who is pregnant with twins, or his 2-year-old son, Mason, for more than a month when he was traded from the Winnipeg Jets to the Boston Bruins on March 1.

Less than 24 hours after the trade, he left Winnipeg and had a brief layover at the Minnesota airport, where he was able to see his wife at the gate for 20 minutes before Stafford, 31, continued his journey to Boston to play for his third NHL team.

"She's about 33 weeks now, so she's coming down to the wire," Stafford said after he arrived in Boston. "She can't travel, so she's back home in Minnesota. She met me at the airport to say 'hi' quickly because I haven't seen her in a while. It was nice to catch up. She's doing good, and I'm obviously monitoring that. The family stuff is extremely important to me."

The NHL trade deadline is an stressful time for players, but the personal pressure and anxiety they deal with often goes unnoticed because their teams are busy fighting for a postseason berth.

Continued

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  Tags: boston+bruins, drew+stafford, winnipeg+jets

Brad Marchand, superstar…and rat

Sportsnet's Ryan Dixon penned a "Big Read" about Brad Marchand's transformation into one of the league's best players--and a player who's remained one of the league's biggest pests:

Not so long ago, the notion of mentioning Marchand in the same breath as Sidney Crosby, Mario Lemieux or Alex Ovechkin was tantamount to sliding a cheeseburger into a debate about the world’s greatest steak. But in the past 18 months, few players in the NHL have scored with the frequency of the Boston Bruins left winger, who netted a career-high 37 goals last year, sits fourth in NHL scoring this season despite playing for a club that’s in the bottom third of the league offensively and suddenly finds himself included on Canada’s top squads and getting invited to all-star games.

Marchand himself still seems slightly taken aback by that idea and it’s definitely hard to square for people who first came to know him in a much different context. While many these days may toast his national-team accomplishments, those same voices will deride him as a pest and a cheap-shot artist when club loyalties come into play. And, to be sure, his more boneheaded acts have definitely drawn bi-partisan ire. Increasingly, though, any conversation about the always-buzzing Bruin requires its share of superlatives to describe just how good a player Marchand has turned himself into.

Dixon continues...

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  Tags: boston+bruins, brad+marchand

Ranking the Top 10 American players

From NHL.com's Brian Compton:

The United States of America is celebrating its 240th birthday Monday. Citizens will spend the day celebrating their freedom with friends and family.

Keeping in the holiday spirit, NHL.com looks at the top 10 American NHL players of all-time:

1. Mike Modano, C -- Arguably the best U.S.-born player in the NHL history, Modano spent two decades with the Minnesota North Stars/Dallas Stars franchise and led it to the Stanley Cup in 1999. Modano played 1,499 regular-season games, and his 561 goals and 1,374 points are more than any player born in the U.S. He also had 58 goals and 146 points in 176 Stanley Cup Playoffs games. Modano was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2014.

2. Brian Leetch, D -- Leetch broke into the NHL with the Rangers late in the 1987-88 season and won the Calder Trophy in 1988-89 with 23 goals and 48 assists in 68 games. He won the Conn Smythe Trophy and helped the Rangers win their first Stanley Cup championship in 54 years in 1994 and remained in New York for another 10 seasons. Leetch finished his career with stops with the Toronto Maple Leafs and Boston Bruins. In 1,205 regular-season games he had 247 goals and 781 assists. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2009.

Continued

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  Tags: boston+bruins, brian+leetch, dallas+stars, mike+modano, minnesota+north+stars, new+york+rangers, toronto+maple+leafs

Bruins to ‘offer sheet’ Trouba?

Take this for what you will, from CSNNE's Joe Haggerty:

According to a hockey source, Don Sweeney and the Boston Bruins “are preparing an offer sheet” this week for Winnipeg Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba as an aggressive option to land a No. 1 defenseman after trades didn’t pan out at last weekend’s NHL Draft.

The Bruins have watched Trouba closely for some time, and clearly have an interest in the 22-year-old D-man with size, offensive abilities and a workhorse nature that’s seen him average more than 22 minutes of ice time per game since entering the league as a 19-year-old.

Trouba is coming off a six-goal, 21-point season while playing in 81 games for the Jets, and was a career-best plus-10 for Winnipeg. With Trouba, a restricted free agent, and the Jets locked into big money deals to fellow right shot D-men in Dustin Byfuglien and Tyler Myers, the writing has been on the wall for some time that the Jets would need to give one of them up.

Now it appears the Bruins may be willing to put their money, and their assets, where their interest is, and come up with an offer sheet that totals a minimum of $47 million for Trouba’s services.

Continued with an explanation as to why that financial total is important...

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  Tags: boston+bruins, don+sweeney, jacob+trouba, winnipeg+jets

Was the Boston Bruins’ rout at the hands of Los Angeles a ‘time for a trade’ indication for Boston?

From ESPN's "Morning 3 on 3":

Scott Burnside: Well, that was quite a homecoming for Milan Lucic, no? The former Boston Bruins power forward and key member of the Bruins' 2011 Stanley Cup-winning team returned with his new team the Los Angeles Kings, and they put a big-time hurt on the Bruins in a 9-2 trouncing. Ouch. Nine different Kings scored, including Lucic (who also added an assist). We have often suggested these teams are mirror images of each other in terms of style and identity, but maybe Boston's reflection has more than a few cracks these days. While Lucic has fit seamlessly with the Kings, purveyors of heavy hockey who have rediscovered their mojo, the Bruins continue to meander through the Eastern Conference. Yes, Boston owns a wild card spot as of Wednesday morning, but is anyone confident this is a team that can stay there, or make a dent if they get in? More to the point, how does rookie Bruins GM Don Sweeney approach his first trade deadline? Add or subtract? Both? Neither?

Continued

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  Tags: boston+bruins, don+sweeney, los+angeles+kings, milan+lucic

Prust spears Marchand

Sportsnet provides a clip of Vancouver Canucks forward Brandon Prust spearing Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand:

He got Lucic'd.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, brad+marchand, brandon+prust, vancouver+canucks

Brooks: NHL’s ‘Paid Patriotism’ teams weren’t hiding money

According to the New York Post's Larry Brooks, the recent "Paid Patriotism" report reflects poorly upon NHL teams:

Six NHL teams received funds from the U.S. Department of Defense amounting to a sum of $1,040,500 from fiscal years 2012-15 to promote patriotism by virtue of honoring veterans and the military, according to a report released on Wednesday by U.S. Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake of Arizona.

Boston, Carolina, Florida, Minnesota, Detroit and Dallas participated in the program, with the Wild reaping $570,000 from their partnership with the Minnesota Army National Guard.

The report has sparked questions and even some outrage about whether this is a proper use of government money, but no one should infer or imply that these teams or the league have anything for which to apologize. The NHL didn’t have its hand out here.

There was nothing surreptitious about it within the league, either. Deputy commissioner Bill Daly told Slap Shots the so-called “patriot funds” were reported as hockey-related revenue (HRR) as per the collective bargaining agreement.

“Anything received by Clubs as part of partnership deals with military organizations would have been included in HRR reporting and therefore would have been shared with the Players,” Daly wrote in an email correspondence.

Brooks continues, discussing Alain Vigneault's candidacy for Team Canada's World Cup team, goal-scoring disparities and James Neal's "hit list."

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  Tags: boston+bruins, carolina+hurricanes, dallas+stars, detroit+red+wings, florida+panthers, minnesota+wild

Here’s the Boston Bruins’ Winter Classic jersey

Not bad...

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  Tags: boston+bruins, winter+classic

Rinaldo tossed for hit on Couturier

Zach Rinaldo received a game misconduct for this hit on Sean Couturier:

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  Tags: boston+bruins, philadelphia+flyers, sean+couturier, zach+rinaldo

NHL, Epix to continue producing ‘Road to the Winter Classic’

From the NHL:

EPIX AND NHL REUNITE FOR A SECOND SEASON OF
"EPIX PRESENTS ROAD TO THE NHL WINTER CLASSIC”

Produced By Ross Greenburg in partnership with NHL Original Productions,
New Season Premieres on EPIX December 16

Series Follows the Boston Bruins & Montreal Canadiens As Original Six™ Rivals Head Toward the 2016 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® On New Year’s Day

Free Live Stream of Each Episode Available to U.S. Audiences
via EPIX.com and NHL.com

NEW YORK (October 15, 2015) – Premium TV network EPIX and the National Hockey League (NHL) today announced that EPIX Presents Road To the NHL Winter Classic™ will be returning to the channel and will make its U.S. television premiere Wednesday, Dec. 16 at 10pm ET/PT, 9C.  The weekly series, consisting of four one-hour episodes, will focus on the heated rivalry between the Boston Bruins and the Montreal Canadiens as they prepare for the 2016 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic® at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass. on New Year’s Day 2016. This will be the second year that EPIX and the NHL® team up for this all-access look inside the lives of these elite professional athletes, their families and their fans. In addition, U.S. hockey fans will be able to stream each episode of EPIX Presents Road To the NHL Winter Classic live as it premieres on EPIX via EPIX.com and NHL.com.

Continue Reading »

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  Tags: boston+bruins, epix, montreal+canadiens, winter+classic

Chara out for the Bruins due to ‘upper-body injury’

From NHL.com:

Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara will not be in the lineup against the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday.

Bruins coach Claude Julien made the announcement after the morning skate Thursday.

Chara is on injured reserve because of an upper-body injury sustained Sept. 24 during a preseason game against the New York Rangers. He had practiced Wednesday and served as a substitute on the second power-play unit.

Last season Chara, 38, had eight goals and 20 points in 63 games. He missed two months because of a knee injury.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, claude+julien, winnipeg+jets, zdeno+chara

Bruins’ owner suggests that Board of Governors’ desire for expansion is middling

From ESPN Boston's Joe McDonald:

Jeremy Jacobs, the NHL’s chairman of the board of governors and owner of the Boston Bruins, had some candid remarks Thursday about the possibility of expansion.

Jacobs admitted the expansion process is moving forward after listening to presentations this week from Quebec and Las Vegas, two of the bidders looking to add an NHL franchise.

"There’s a lot of content there. There’s a lot of capability there, but I don’t know if there’s a desire or will within the board of the existing franchises for expansion yet," Jacobs said. "They both made pretty interesting proposals. Both have very legitimate arenas in place and organizations in place. There’s a capacity out there, but I don’t know if there’s a will from a league standpoint."

Jacobs said he feels good about the current status of the 30-team league, and that there was no preconceived notion about expanding to 32.

"I think it’s more important -- what is the best thing for the league as a whole, and what’s the best thing for Boston," he said. "Right now, the 30 teams are pretty good for all of us; talking where we stand today, I feel good about where we are."

Continued

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  Tags: boston+bruins, expansion, jeremy+jacobs

Bruins president Neely calls criticism of coach Julien ‘unfair’

From ESPN Boston's Joe McDonald:

Boston Bruins team president Cam Neely made it perfectly clear Thursday that he has faith in coach Claude Julien.

When Julien was done answering a question about his job security during the team's annual media day, Neely quickly jumped in and added his thoughts on the matter, which has been a topic of discussion since the Bruins missed the playoffs for the first time in eight seasons in the spring.

Neely mentioned that he's been reading and hearing stories that Julien's on the hot seat if the team doesn't bounce back from a disappointing 2014-2015 season.

"It's unfair to say that," Neely said. "Claude's a very good coach in this league. [New Bruins GM] Don [Sweeney] came to us with a plan of how he would like to see the team play, and he's had many conversations with Claude about that, but a lot of things happen throughout the course of the year that's not necessarily just on the coach. It's unfair. I know why certain things are said at times, but it's really unfair to start the season where it's out there that the coach could be on the hot seat. It's unfair to Claude."

Neely said he understands why there's a perception that some might think Julien is under fire because of everything that has been said since the end of last season.

"If it's written enough, people start to believe it," Neely said.

Continued

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  Tags: boston+bruins, cam+neely, claude+julien

Chara still recovering from ‘upper-body injury’

From WEEI's DJ Bean:

Bruins captain Zdeno Chara skated by himself again prior to Thursday’€™s practice as he continues to rehab an upper-body injury injury suffered in last Thursday’€™s preseason game against the Rangers.

Chara was on the ice for at least 15 minutes, working with strength and conditioning coach John Whitesides. He worked mostly on retrieving pucks, catching passes and stick handling. It does not appear Chara is ready to shoot the puck, as he abstained from shooting aside from an occasional lazy wrist shot.

Claude Julien said on Tuesday that he was close to being ready to practice with teammates, but the fact that he was still working by himself Thursday suggests it’s unlikely he will join the team for the Bruins’ 11 a.m. practice.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, claude+julien, zdeno+chara

Is Mark Recchi a Hockey Hall of Famer?

From ESPN's Joe McDonald:

There’s no denying the impact Mark Recchi had during his 22-year career. He won three Stanley Cups with three different teams: the Pittsburgh Penguins (1991), the Carolina Hurricanes (2006) and the Boston Bruins (2011). He made a difference both on and off the ice wherever he played. Recchi could have retired after a disappointing 2009-10 season in Boston, but decided he wanted to go out a winner and stayed for one more season, helping the Bruins hoist the Cup with a win over the Vancouver Canucks in 2011. He officially announced his retirement while celebrating with his teammates on the ice at Rogers Arena. "Rex" didn’t earn induction in 2015.

The Case For

Not many can go out the way Recchi did. I still remember the image of him sitting at his locker at TD Garden after the Bruins lost in historic fashion to the Philadelphia Flyers in the 2010 Eastern Conference semifinals. The Bruins had a 3-0 series lead, but the Flyers erased that deficit and won in seven games. By the time the media was allowed in the Bruins’ locker room, all of the players were out of their equipment with the exception of Recchi. The only piece of equipment hanging in his stall was his helmet. The 2010 version of the Bruins missed their opportunity, and Recchi knew it. He said he needed time to decide whether or not he would retire. It didn’t take him long to realize the team’s potential, so he signed another one-year deal for 2010-11. It was that drive, determination and never-say-die attitude throughout his entire career that made Recchi so good, and the players around him better.

His contributions on the ice were impressive, too. He finished with 577 goals and 1,533 points (12th all time) in 1,652 games. He produced three 100-point seasons. He was extremely durable, too, routinely playing a full 82-game season. Plus, three Cup championships speaks for itself. He’s one of only three players to win a Cup with three different teams, joining Joe Nieuwendyk and Claude Lemieux.

Continued

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  Tags: boston+bruins, carolina+hurricanes, mark+recchi, pittsburgh+penguins

Bruins represent a major question mark in the Atlantic Division

Pro Hockey Talk is focusing on the Boston Bruins today, and James O'Brien superbly summarized the "State of the Bruins":

If nothing else, you shouldn’t confuse next season’s Boston Bruins with the group who failed to make the playoffs in 2014-15.

After a pretty impressive run of seven postseason berths, the Bruins fell two points short of the postseason, but apparently the bitter flavor of that campaign was too much for management.

Granted, as much as new GM Don Sweeney wants to modernize the team’s transition game, there are still some core tenants remaining.

The defense will depend upon aging star defenseman Zdeno Chara, perhaps more than ever. Tuukka Rask may be expected to earn every cent of his $7.5 million salary in 2015-16. It looked dicey for some time, but Claude Julien remains behind the bench.

It’s tough to gauge what, exactly, we should expect from a very different Bruins team. People probably won’t be any happier if they miss the playoffs again, though.

O'Brien continues...

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  Tags: boston+bruins, claude+julien, don+sweeney, tuuka+rask, zdeno+chara

Anybody want a ‘Soda Berg?’

The Boston Globe's Amalie Benjamin reports that one of the best "value" free agents out there will definitely be on the market come July 1st:

The Bruins will not make a contract offer to center Carl Soderberg, according to his agent, J.P. Barry.

Soderberg, 29, whose three-year, $3.025 million contract expires next month, was told by the Bruins that they “can’t make an offer at this juncture,” according to Barry.

Soderberg scored 13 goals and had 31 assists last season, playing in all 82 games.

Gregory Campbell, Daniel Paille, Adam McQuaid, and Matt Bartkowski are also in the final year of their contracts and also would become unrestricted free agents July 1.

And "Soda Berg" is what the Boston announcers' accents render upon "Sod-er-berg."

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  Tags: boston+bruins, carl+soderberg

Report: Claude Julien to return as Bruins coach

From the Boston Globe's Kevin Paul Dupont:

Bruins coach Claude Julien, his job in limbo for nearly two months following the abrupt season-end dismissal of general manager Peter Chiarelli, will be back behind the bench for the start of the 2015-16 season, according to two NHL sources.

It is also believed that Julien, 55, will be joined by his full cadre of assistant coaches, including Doug Jarvis, Doug Houda, Joe Sacco, and Bob Essensa.

Julien is beginning a new three-year contract he signed in November 2014 while Chiarelli was still in charge.

Rumors in recent weeks have pointed to a change at least among the assistant coaches. However, all are on target to return, though the length of their contract terms is unclear. It’s possible, according to one of the sources, that all four will have deals that expire at the end of the season.

Don Sweeney, named the club’s new GM on May 20, would neither confirm nor deny Julien’s return when contacted by the Globe. The club announced earlier this week that Sweeney will meet with the media Friday in Buffalo, where the NHL is conducting its combine, the annual testing regimen for players who will be eligible in the draft (June 26-27 in Sunrise, Fla).

Continued...

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  Tags: boston+bruins, claude+julien, don+sweeney

Saturday Headlines discuss coaches’ moves and Dubnyk

On Hockey Night in Canada, Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman discussed the post-Babcock coaching dominoes (Todd Nelson of Edmonton "free to look around," Don Sweeney meeting with Claude Julien to discuss "personnel and style of play," Dan Bylsma's status, Ken Hitchcock's future) and Devan Dubnyk's desire to re-sign with the Wild:

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  Tags: boston+bruins, claude+julien, devan+dubnyk, don+sweeney, edmonton+oilers, ken+hitchcock, minnesota+wild, st.+louis+blues, todd+nelson

Lightning send Connolly to Boston, swap Gudas & picks for Flyers’ Coburn

So late-night Twitter is a strange place, and late night Steve Yzerman trades are stranger still. This played out over the better course of an hour:

Continue Reading »

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  Tags: boston+bruins, braydon+coburn, brett+connolly, philadelphia+flyers, radko+gudas, tampa+bay+lightning

Do the Bruins need Yandle to reinvigorate their game?

The Boston Globe's Fluto Shinzawa spends quite a bit of his Sunday notebook discussing the Toronto Maple Leafs' mess and their need to rebuild around Phil Kessel--a little contrary to the "wisdom" coming out of Toronto these days (and I'm sorry, Leaf fans, Kessel has all the social graces of a perpetually angry 5-year-old, but he's the best player you've got)--but I do believe that he's the first person to make this suggestion:

There is no secret to playing the Bruins. Opponents have identified that panic sets in if they forecheck aggressively and get in the Bruins’ faces. On defense, the Bruins don’t have the personnel to retrieve pucks quickly and shuttle them forward before they’re picking the backs of their heads out of the glass.

The Bruins are indeed slow-footed if they're not the ones smashing their opponents on the forecheck.

Of their regular six-pack, Dougie Hamilton and Torey Krug are the best at moving the puck. When he’s not skittish, Matt Bartkowski does the job, too. But it’s too easy for other teams to slam down hard, eliminate the D-to-D pass, and hound the Bruins below the dots. No club can succeed when it’s under assault behind the goal line.

By next season, Joe Morrow might be ready for full-time NHL work. He’s not enough. The Bruins need at least one more defenseman who can move the puck with poise.

With Arizona rebuilding, GM Don Maloney is listening on everyone, including Keith Yandle. The Bruins would have to send Krug the other way, along with maybe another young roster player, a pick, and a prospect. They’d also have to clear out cash. Neither is easy to do.

Shinzawa continues, and as this is KK hockey, I (George) will refrain from adding a .gif of someone raising a middle finger regarding Mr. Shinzawa's "good on the NHL for fining Gustav Nyquist" line.

The second infraction was a dive, but the first wasn't--and I think it's pretty pathetic that the NHL's far more concerned with having its referees determine if a player's embellishing than, you know, calling the obstruction, interference, moving picks, tackles, seals and sit-on-him moves that have become commonplace again in a clutchier, grabbier NHL than we've seen since the 04-05 season mercifully ended with Calgary unable to all but literally rope down John Tortorella's Lightning.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, dougie+hamilton, joe+morrow, keith+yandle, phoenix+coyotes, torey+krug

Cox, Friedman dish NCAA-to-CHL rumors, diving chatter, trade talk and more

This Saturday, Damien Cox and Elliotte Friedman got six minutes' worth of time to discuss hockey headlines, and they stated that:

  • Boston University forward and top 2015 draft prospect Jack Eichel may or may not bolt from NCAA hockey to join a Canadian Hockey League team, with the Saint John Sea Dogs owning his rights. Cox points out that Charlie Coyle, Adam Tambellini and Sonny Milano have all committed to NCAA teams and then joined CHL teams instead, so it is possible that Eichel may be on the move after he plays for Team USA at the World Junior Championships--and BC goalie Thatcher Demko might also exit stage CHL;

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  Tags: boston+bruins, dallas+eakins, doug+armstrong, edmonton+oilers, jack+eichel, james+neal, mike+fisher, nashville+predators, reilly+smith, st.+louis+blues, tj+oshie, torey+krug, toronto+maple+leafs

Seidenberg hits Toews from behind and a disagreement regarding intent ensues

The Chicago Blackhawks defated the Boston Bruins 3-2 in Boston on Thursday night, and Jonathan Toews was reported to be okay after sustaining this hit from Dennis Seidenberg:

However, per Pro Hockey Talk's Dhiren Mahibian...

And per the Associated Press:

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  Tags: boston+bruins, chicago+blackhawks, claude+julien, dennis+seidenberg, joel+quenneville, jonathan+toews, patrick+sharp

Friedman, Cox discuss Julien extension, Ekblad sticking with Panthers, etc.

This time the Hockey Night in Canada segment in which Elliotte Friedman and Damien Cox dish news and notes has been geo-blocked to Canada only (Paul sent me an email informing me of the "stuff we already know" in that Red Wings prospect Anthony Mantha is skating with the Grand Rapids Griffins, hopefully making his pro debut in about two weeks, but Daniel Alfredsson is not and may retire), but Friedman did offer some Twitter quips from his exchange, beginning with Ryan McDonagh's separated shoulder yielding interest in Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Andrej Sekera (who is "on the block"):

Ekblad scored his first goal, a game-winning marker in Florida's 2-1 win over Philadelphia on Saturday evening...

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  Tags: aaron+ekblad, andrej+sekera, boston+bruins, carolina+hurricanes, claude+julien, daniel+alfredsson, detroit+red+wings, florida+panthers, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh

Bruins re-sign Matt Bartkowski

From TSN:

The NHL can scratch another upcoming arbitration hearing off their list.

The Boston Bruins and restricted free agent defenceman Matt Bartkowski agreed to a one-year, $1.25 million deal Monday, making him the second RFA to sign before his arbitration hearing. Nashville Predators defenceman Mattias Ekholm was the first.

Bartkowski, 26, recorded 18 assists in 64 games with the Bruins last season. For his career, the former seventh-round pick has 20 assists in 84 games.

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Garrioch on Sharp, the Penguins, Vanek, Niskanen and Stastny

You are probably familiar with the dynamics of the Joe Thornton situation (seems like the theory is, "Take the 'C' away, see if he waives the no-trade," as ESPN's Craig Custance reported), you are probably familiar with the dynamics of the Ryan Kesler trade (he says he's going to where deserves to be, and in Vancouver, it's, "Everybody thought he was a dick"), so:

The Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch pulled double-time in covering the Sens' picks, Jason Spezza's situation (what's so bad about a guy turning down a trade to a team that's on his no-trade list? Emo GM Bryan Murray will tell you) and positing a Sunday rumor column, and he addresses a situation we haven't necessarily talked about as of yet:

There has been a lot of controversy in Chicago over whether the Hawks have been trying to deal forward Patrick Sharp or not. While it was heavily denied by Sharp’s agent Rick Curran that his client was on the move, Sharp’s name has been popping up all over the place in trade talks. Several teams say he’s available, so it will be interesting to see if he’s still there when push comes to shove after this summer. The Hawks are already over the salary cap and will have to cut money somewhere.

Garrioch also notes that it's a little ironic that the Penguins say they're going to be "aggressive" in free agency given their cap situation...

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  Tags: boston+bruins, chicago+blackhawks, chris+kelly, colorado+avalanche, joe+thornton, matt+niskanen, patrick+sharp, paul+stastny, pittsburgh+penguins, ryan+kesler, san+jose+sharks, thomas+vanek, vancouver+canucks

Bruins’ Bergeron, Jarome Iginla’s agent weigh in on…Jarome Iginla’s future as a Bruin

The Boston Herald's Stephen Conroy ventured to Las Vegas to attend the NHL Awards, and he received an update of sorts on Jarome Iginla's situation--one hopeful, from Patrice Bergeron, and one literal, from Iginla's agent:

“He was a big part of our offense, a big part of our leadership as well last year,” said Bergeron, who is up for the Selke Award and the NHL Foundation Player Award tonight. “With the experience that he has and if you look at his stats and his numbers, he was so humble and he fit in right away with us as a great teammate and we definitely would like to have him back, but that's definitely not our decision. But hopefully it happens.”

 In a text to the Herald, Iginla's agent Don Meehan wrote, “I will meet with Peter [Chiarelli] in Philly (the site of the NHL draft) in the next day or so.” He also wrote that Iginla will not be part of the meeting. Starting Wednesday, UFAs-to-be like Iginla can also being speaking to other teams, though deals cannot be signed until July 1. TSN's Darren Dreger reported that the Detroit Red Wings would be “in the mix” if Iginla hit the market. Another landing spot could be Colorado, where he could lend his experience to a promising group of youngsters.

Continued

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  Tags: boston+bruins, don+meehan, jarome+iginla, patrice+bergeron

NHL Names All-Rookie Team

From the NHL:

NHL ANNOUNCES 2013-14 ALL-ROOKIE TEAM

NEW YORK (June 24, 2014) -- The National Hockey League today announced the 2013-14 NHL All-Rookie Team, including the three players named as finalists for the Calder Memorial Trophy as the League’s top rookie: forwards Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat of the Tampa Bay Lightning and Nathan MacKinnon of the Colorado Avalanche.

Also named to the All-Rookie Team are two members of the Anaheim Ducks, goaltender Frederik Andersen and defenseman Hampus Lindholm, and Boston Bruins defenseman Torey Krug.

Voting was conducted by the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association at the end of the regular season. Following is a summary of each NHL All-Rookie Team member’s outstanding season:

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  Tags: anaheim+ducks, boston+bruins, colorado+avalanche, hampus+lindholm, nathan+mackinnon, ondrej+palat, tampa+bay+lightning, torey+krug

NHL Names post-season All-Star team

From the NHL:

NHL ANNOUNCES 2013-14 ALL-STAR TEAMS

LAS VEGAS (June 24, 2014) -- Center Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins and defenseman Zdeno Chara of the Boston Bruins, who each earned his third career berth on the First All-Star Team, head the list of players voted to the 2013-14 National Hockey League postseason All-Star Teams. Crosby received First Team honors for the second consecutive season, while Chara earned a spot on the First Team for the first time since 2008-09.

Joining Crosby and Chara are two second-time selections to the First Team, right wing Corey Perry of the Anaheim Ducks and defenseman Duncan Keith of the Chicago Blackhawks. The squad also features two first-time recipients, left wing Jamie Benn of the Dallas Stars and goaltender Tuukka Rask of the Bruins.

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NHL announces that Patrice Bergeron’s won the EA Sports NHL 15 Cover Vote

Puck Daddy's Greg Wyshynski revealed this a couple of hours ago, but it's official:

EA Sports mysteriously absent from Twitter. #drinkingwithcuba

Here's the NHL's press release:

EA SPORTS ANNOUNCE PATRICE BERGERON AS FAN-SELECTED NHL 15 COVER ATHLETE

Boston Bruins Forward Selected To Lead New Generation of Hockey Videogames After More Than 10 Million Fan Votes

REDWOOD CITY, Calif., - June 24, 2014 - Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA), the National Hockey League (NHL®) and the National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA®) announced today that Boston Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron has been voted by hockey fans to be the EA SPORTS™ NHL®15 cover athlete, kicking off a bold new generation of hockey videogames for the award winning franchise. Bergeron topped Montreal Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban following more than 10 million votes from hockey fans around the world. Earning 4 wins and 5 nominations for Best Sports Game at Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) 2014, NHL 15 is the next leap forward in the genre-defining franchise from EA SPORTS.

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NHL Awards live-ish thread and/or Tweet-results

I'll try to keep a "live tally" of the NHL Awards show via Twitter-based updates:

Ted Lindsay Award (NHLPA MVP): Sidney Crosby:

Selke Trophy (best defensive forward): Patrice Bergeron:

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  Tags: boston+bruins, patrice+bergeron, pittsburgh+penguins, sidney+crosby, ted+lindsay

Cherry ponders Habs-Rangers game, suggests that Lucic’s actions were fueled by passion

I can't say that I was thrilled with Don Cherry's Coach's Corner this afternoon. Cherry discussed the first period of the Canadiens-Rangers game, analyzing the Rangers' play and some of the "rough stuff" going on, and after a lovely little Ginette Reno retrospective...

He spent a significant amount of time suggesting that Milan Lucic "shouldn't have done" what he did, especially given the legal ramifications of what he said, but then Cherry suggested that Lucic's actions were understandable and forgiveable. Moreover, Cherry claims one cannot prove that Lucic said he was going to kill anyone on TV, despite the fact that the entire English-speaking world could lip-read exactly that. Moreover, Cherry suggested that Lucic's passion in general is admirable as admirable can be:

Cherry's also a big Memorial Cup fan, but as the host London Knights lost the tournament-opener to a Quebec-based team with two Quebec-born players starring in goaltender Antoine Bibeau and forward Anthony Mantha...There wasn't "time" for any highlights.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, milan+lucic, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers

Lucic, Weise and sweet handshake line nothings

When hockey moves at the speed of Twitter, funny things happen--and not "funny ha." After the Montreal Canadiens defeated the Boston Bruins, I watched the handshake line on the CBC, and saw it jerk and pause (this video comes from Pro Hockey Talk's Ryan Dadoun):

Almost immediately, there were questions, because the line paused twice--when Milan Lucic passed Dale Weise and Alexei Emelin--and then, with the Bruins and Habs' media being the Bruins' and Habs' media...

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  Tags: alexei+emelin, boston+bruins, dale+weise, milan+lucic, montreal+canadiens

Julien’s one-liner misses the mark

Claude Julien got his quotes mixed up:

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  Tags: boston+bruins, claude+julien

Shenanigans mar Bruins-Canadiens game

The Montreal Canadiens played an absolutely wonderful end-to-end game in defeating the Boston Bruins 4-0, forcing a Game 7 in Beantown on Wednesday thanks to speed, skating, clutch scoring and a few more goalposts to Carey Price's credit but this bullshit left the most lasting impression (latest spearer: Andrei Markov on Zdeno Chara):

Update: CBS Boston's Michael Hurley noted what Bruins coach Claude Julien had to say about the affair:

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David Desharnais with the save of the night

This was absolutely brilliant--and legal:

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  Tags: boston+bruins, david+desharnais, montreal+canadiens

Bruins’ call-up delivers game-winning and series-tying goal vs. Montreal

The Boston Bruins decided to make a personnel change on Thursday, swapping out Justin Florek for Matt Fraser, and boy howdy, did their pick pay off as the Bruins shut down the Canadiens' offensive machine and won 1-0 in overtime--thanks to Fraser, as the CP's recap notes:

Rookie Matt Fraser got to live a dream he had many times while growing up in Red Deer, Alta. Fraser, called up Wednesday from AHL Providence and playing his first career NHL playoff game, scored 1:19 into overtime to give the Boston Bruins a 1-0 victory over the Montreal Canadiens to even their Eastern Conference semifinal series on Thursday night.

The 23-year-old jumped into a scramble in front of goalie Carey Price's net and slid the puck under him into the net.

"It was bouncing around and I was just swatting at it as hard as I could and hoping it would hit something," said Fraser. "Price is such a good goalie. He doesn't give out a lot of rebounds. I might have got lucky there, but the puck wound up in the back of the net. It's something I dreamed about many times on the outdoor rinks growing up. It's every kid's dream to score in overtime."

The CP's recap continues, and as you can easily see, the Bruins capitalized on  a terrible case of standing-around-itis by the Habs' defense:

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  Tags: boston+bruins, carey+price, montreal+canadiens

Bruins happy that Carey Price’s ‘Essensaing’ gives them open nets

The last few dinosaurs of the stand-up goaltending technique--30-something-and-up goalies like myself--fondly remember goaltenders like Bob Essensa as pioneeers, and as cautionary reminders that relying on the same technique all the time was nothing less than dangerous.

In an era when goaltenders stayed on their feet until shots came their way, Essensa offered a unique alternative to trying to look OVER your opponents when screened. Instead of poking his head over traffic, he'd crouch down to the point that his entire torso and head were parallel to his thighs, looking through players' elbows and even around their butts to find the puck.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, carey+price, dougie+hamilton, montreal+canadiens, torey+krug

Subban delivers OT winner for Montreal in Game 1 of Habs-B’s series

The Montreal Canadiens and Boston Bruins opened their second-round series with a wild and woolly affair that ended in a 4-3, double OT win for Montreal, thanks to this slapper through traffic from PK Subban:

The goal was a power play marker, too...

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  Tags: boston+bruins, montreal+canadiens, pk+subban, pk+subban

Don Cherry dekes, dangles and sprints past spears on Coach’s Corner

The CBC's Don Cherry had a very selective memory on Saturday evening. He lamented Brandon Dubinsky's ability to attack Sidney Crosby at will in Game 1 of the Penguins-Blue Jackets series, he mocked Duncan Keith for jabbing at the Blues' stars--suggesting that Keith "got Seabrook pumped up" (before sidestepping that topic)--he reviewed the Blues' game-winning goal against Chicago, lamenting Patrick Kane not blocking a shot, he very briefly praised Pavel Datsyuk's game-winner and suggested that the Wings are the worst team for the Bruins to play as their lack of retaliation prevents the Bruins from playing their game (no Loosick mention on Saturday), and then he praised Corey Perry scoring against Dallas and Ryan Getzlaf's persistence (no spear there, either).

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  Tags: anaheim+ducks, boston+bruins, brandon+dubinsky, brent+seabrook, columbus+blue+jackets, columbus-blue-jackets, corey+perry, detroit+red+wings, don+cherry, duncan+keith, pittsburgh+penguins, ryan+getzlaf, sidney+crosby

Lucic spears DeKeyser, Perry spears Benn, Daley sits on Perry, Yahtzee

I guess the NHL's annual start-of-the-playoffs crackdown on horizontal stick fouls only counts regarding obstruction and interference, not spearing, stick-swinging or otherwise using one's stick as an instrument of torture.

As noted in the Wings-Bruins quick take, @myregularface showed Milan Lucic spearing Danny DeKeyser in the groin...

 

And during tonight's Ducks-Stars game, Corey Perry did this to Jamie Benn, per The Score and TSN...

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  Tags: anaheim+ducks, boston+bruins, corey+perry, dallas+stars, danny+dekeyser, detroit+red+wings, jamie+benn, milan+lucic, trevor+daley

Matheson runs the gamut of hockey stories in this week’s ‘Hockey World’

The Edmonton Journal's Jim Matheson's Hockey World mega-column's been chopped into 4 bite-size blog entries, and this week, he has a conversation with Nashville Predators GM David Poile, he suggests that the Oilers ought to draft Leon Draisaitl over Aaron Eklbad at the 2014 draft, and amongst his "This 'n' that" notes...

Ted Nolan will likely be getting a three-year contract from the Buffalo Sabres when they return from their Western Conference road swing, which earns a two-thumbs up from Drew Stafford. “He’s a great motivator; he’s extremely simple on his philosophies,” said Stafford, who has been in Buffalo for eight seasons. “He tells us, ‘Look what you get to do for a living … it’s a special opportunity, don’t take it for granted. Show up and compete for a couple of hours.”

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  Tags: boston+bruins, buffalo+sabres, cam+ward, carolina+hurricanes, colorado+avalanche, craig+berube, dennis+seidenberg, detroit+red+wings, gustav+nyquist, patrick+roy, philadelphia+flyers, ted+nolan, ville+leino, wayne+simmonds

Milan Lucic with the ‘you can’t do that’ of the night

The best thing I can say about this hit Milan Lucic delivered to Alexei Emelin, as noted by Pro Hockey Talk's Cam Tucker, is that this is a textbook "he hit the dude in the numbers and then the head" hit, the kind that the Department of Player Safety tends to illustrate as a no-no.

The fact that Emelin wasn't hurt plays in Lucic's favor, but I'd imagine the fact that Lucic scored en route to the Bruins' 4-1 win adds insult to lack of injury:

I can already hear Don Cherry getting ready to defend "Loosick's" hit if this one registers on the NHL's radar.

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  Tags: alexei+emelin, boston+bruins, milan+lucic, montreal+canadiens

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