|03.22.16 at 10:54 am ET|
WILMINGTON — The Bruins recalled forward Frank Vatrano from Providence. They also brought up goaltender Jeremy Smith on an emergency basis.
Vatrano, who had six goals in 30 games for Boston earlier this season, has scored 32 goals in 32 AHL games this season, making the first-year pro the AHL’s leading goal-scorer this season.
In bringing up Vatrano, the Bruins have now used two of the four callups allotted to teams following the trade deadline. The B’s recalled Noel Acciari the day after the deadline.
While Vatrano’s eventual return to Boston was expected, Smith’s recall might be the more intriguing of the two. Tuukka Rask was not on the ice for Tuesday’s practice, leaving Smith and Jonas Gustavsson as the only goalies practicing. Claude Julien said after the practice that Rask is sick, but will travel to New York with the team for Wednesday night’s game against the Rangers. Julien noted that all three goalies will make the trip.
Smith spent most of the season with the Iowa Wild after the B’s loaned him to Minnesota’s organization given their surplus of goaltenders in Providence. He has played in Providence of late, however, given the absence of Malcolm Subban. The 26-year-old had a .911 save percentage in 23 games for Iowa before posting a .932 save percentage for Providence over 11 games.
Speaking of Subban, the young goaltender, who remains out after larynx surgery that followed a puck to the throat during warmups on Feb. 6 for Providence, reportedly skated at the end of Providence’s practice Tuesday.
Vatrano practiced on the fourth line Tuesday, giving the B’s the following lineup in practice:
|03.20.16 at 6:36 am ET|
Hockey? Good. We’re tired. Listen live.
|03.20.16 at 1:07 am ET|
The Bruins will return from their three-game California road trip with as many points as they had going into it.
With a 2-1 loss to the Kings Saturday in Los Angeles, the Bruins dropped all three games of the trip, which included losses in San Jose and Anaheim. They finished the season series 0-6-0 against California teams.
After allowing the first two goals Saturday, the Bruins pushed back hard in the second and third periods (they allowed just two shots on goal in the third), but Tyler Randell’s sixth goal of the season was all the Bruins could muster offensively.
With the loss, the Bruins (86 points) dropped to third in the Atlantic Division. They trail both the Panthers (89 points) and Lightning (87 points) and have played 73 games to Florida and Tampa’s 72.
With a three-game regulation losing streak, the Bruins have tied their worst three-game stretch of the season, as they had three previous 0-3-0 streaks.
The Bruins next will play Wednesday night when they face the Rangers at Madison Square Garden.
POWER PLAYS A PLENTY
The Bruins didn’t score a power-play goal Saturday, but it wasn’t for lack of chances. Boston had four power plays, which was the most it had in a game since it had five back on March 5.
The Bruins were shorthanded twice on Saturday, making it the second game in Boston’s last seven that the B’s had more power plays than their opponent.
|03.19.16 at 12:33 am ET|
The Bruins knew their odds weren’t great heading into Friday night facing the best home-ice team in the Western Conference.
Their worst fears were realized as Frederik Andersen stopped all 38 shots while Jamie McGinn and Ryan Kesler scored in the game’s first four minutes to lead the Anaheim Ducks to a 4-0 win at the Honda Center in Southern California. The Ducks improved to 23-9-5 on home ice this season and have the fewest regulation losses at home this season in the Western Conference.
Andersen is now 15-1-1 in his last 17 starts in goal for the Ducks.
The Bruins are now 0-2 in their California swing, with another game Saturday night in Los Angeles against the Kings. The Bruins remain at 86 points in the Atlantic Division, three points behind the idle Florida Panthers and still one ahead of third-place Tampa Bay.
It was just the third time the Bruins were blanked this season and the first since Feb. 18 at Nashville.
The Ducks added a 4-on-4 goal from Hampus Lindholm just 58 seconds into the third period for important insurance. Rickard Rickell made it 4-0 at 14:28 of the third.
The Bruins had two great third-period chances. The first came with just under 12 minutes left when Loui Eriksson came down the left wing and fed a perfect saucer pass to David Pastrnak. But Pastrnak fired one into the chest of Andersen to keep the shutout in tact. Then with three and a half minutes left, Andersen stoned David Krejci from the left circle.
|03.16.16 at 11:31 am ET|
The Bruins returned forward Frank Vatrano to Providence on Wednesday, two days after he was recalled on an emergency basis.
Vatrano, a sharp-shooting left winger who has scored 31 goals in 31 games for Providence in his first professional season, was brought up for the start of the Bruins’ California road trip as insurance should one of Boston’s forwards have been unable to play. David Krejci was one player whose status was in question, but Krejci played and had two points (a goal and an assist) in the Bruins’ 3-2 loss to the Sharks on Tuesday.
Vatrano has played 30 games for Boston this season, scoring six goals and adding an assist for seven points.
|03.16.16 at 12:46 am ET|
The Bruins did something Tuesday night that they hadn’t done since the trade deadline: lose a game in regulation.
The start to Bruins’ California road trip proved to be a disappointing one, as they fell to the Sharks, 3-2, on a night when the Panthers regained the top spot in the Atlantic Division. The Bruins are 5-1-2 since the trade deadline.
Despite the Sharks dictating much of the game, the teams entered the third period tied at two goals apiece before a Jimmy Hayes penalty for an illegal check to the head of Justin Braun set up what would be the game-deciding power play goal for the Sharks.
The Panthers, who beat the Canadiens on Tuesday night, now sit one point ahead of Boston with 87 points on the season. Florida also still has a game in hand, as the B’s have played 71 games to the Panthers’ 70.
The Bruins will continue their road tip this weekend with a back to back that sees them face the Ducks Friday and Kings Saturday.
Here are four more things we learned Tuesday:
KREJCI HEALTHY ENOUGH
David Krejci played Tuesday after missing Monday’s practice with an undisclosed ailment. He was healthy enough to make some major plays, as he banged in a rebound off a David Pastrnak shot at 11:26 of the first period, but that was the top of the iceberg for the veteran center.
After Loui Eriksson forced a turnover from Brent Burns during a Sharks power play that Krejci intercepted in the neutral zone, Krejci send a quick backhanded pass behind his back to spring Eriksson on a breakaway for a shorthanded goal. With a goal and an assist, Krejci had his first multi-point performance since Feb. 20.
|03.14.16 at 4:58 pm ET|
The Bruins recalled left wing Frank Vatrano from Providence on an emergency basis Monday. Vatrano will be available to the team for Tuesday night’s game in San Jose.
The first-year pro has 31 goals in 31 games in Providence this season, including 21 goals in 21 games since being returned to the AHL from Boston in late January.
Vatrano scored six goals and added an assist for seven points in 30 games following his recall in November. The East Longmeadow native scored the game-winning overtime goal on Nov. 25 against the Red Wings had a hat trick on Dec. 18 against the Penguins, but registered just one point over his final 13 games before being returned to Providence.
In addition to his 31 goals, Vatrano has 15 assists for Providence, giving him an impressive 46 points in just 31 games.
Claude Julien told reporters in San Jose Monday that Vatrano’s recall is related to the availability of two forwards, one of whom is David Krejci. All forwards but Krejci reportedly took part in Monday’s practice, including Vatrano.