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Bruin nemesis Cooke re-ups with Pittsburgh

06.23.10 at 10:35 am ET
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Bruin fans will be hard pressed to forget the questionable, blindsided hit Matt Cooke delivered on Marc Savard on March 6. Replays confirm the maliciousness of the blow, although Cooke was never penalized on the ice and received no fine from the league office. The hit knocked out Savard until the Flyers series in May.

Known for being a pest on the ice, Cooke re-signed with the Penguins Wednesday, a reported three-year, $5.4 million contract. One of the Penguins’ top penalty-killers, he had 15 goals and 15 assists last season, to go along with a plus-17 and 183 hits. Cooke, who also has played for Vancouver and Washington, could have become a free agent July 1.

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Top two picks in last 25 NHL drafts

06.23.10 at 8:28 am ET
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On Friday the Bruins will have the second pick in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, their highest pick since picking Joe Thornton first overall in 1997. There have been rumors about the B’€™s trading the pick for more picks or possibly a star player, but the Bruins have emphatically denied any plans to give it away. With Tyler Seguin and Taylor Hall expected to go 1-2, it will be the biggest 1-2 punch since the Alex Ovechkin-Evgeni Malkin combo of 2004.

The No 1 pick always is the solid, franchise-building player who can score the most, hit the best, skate the fastest or defend the best. He also can also easily wear the ‘C’ on his sweater within a few years of his debut because he can command respect. In the past, there have been famous No. 1 picks including Guy Lafleur, Denis Potvin, Mario Lemieux, Pierre Turgeon, Mike Modano, Mats Sundin, Eric Lindros, Joe Thornton, Vincent Lacavalier, Rick Nash, Alex Ovechkin, Sidney Crosby and Patrick Kane.

Then, of course, there is the overlooked No. 2 pick in the draft. In many cases, this pick can also be a blessing for a team, just as good as a No. 1 pick, depending on the class. Some of the great No. 2s: Brendan Shanahan, Petr Nedved, Chris Pronger, Patrick Marleau, Dany Heatley, Jason Spezza, the Staal brothers, Evgeni Malkin and James van Riemsdyk.

Here’€™s a list of the past 25 top two picks in the NHL draft.

2009

1. New York Islanders: John Tavares, London (OHL)
2009-present: 82 games, 24 goals, 30 assists, 54 points, 22 PIM, -15 plus/minus
2. Tampa Bay Lightning: Victor Hedman, Modo Ornskoldsvik (Elitserien)
2009-present: 74 games, 4 goals, 16 assists, 30 points, 79 PIM, -3 plus/minus

2008

1. Tampa Bay Lightning: Steven Stamkos, Sarnia (OHL)
2008-present: 161 games, 74 goals, 67 assists, 95 points, 77 PIM, -15 plus/minus
2. Los Angeles Kings: Drew Doughty, Guelph (OHL)
2008-present: 163 games, 22 goals, 64 assists, 86 points, 110 PIM, +3 plus/minus Read the rest of this entry »

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Source: Thomas not on Philly’s radar

06.22.10 at 4:59 pm ET
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Rumors that have linked the Flyers to the Bruins in recent trade discussions might be just that, according to a source close to the situation. Though the Bruins have been shopping Tim Thomas, the goaltender is “not on [Philadelphia's] radar,” said the source. Thomas, who carries a $5 million salary cap hit will be a little easier to take on for interested teams with Tuesday’s news that the NHLPA has exercised an inflator clause to bump the salary cap up to about $59 million.

Thomas, who went 36-11-7 with a 2.10 goals against average en route to winning the Vezina Trophy as the league’s top netminder in ’08-’09, lost his starting job to Tuukka Rask this past season and had offseason hip surgery. He went 17-18-8 with a 2.56 GAA this past season and has three years remaining on his four year, $20 million deal.
Read More: 2010 NHL Draft, Tim Thomas,

Horton ready to help a playoff team

06.22.10 at 4:36 pm ET
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New Bruin Nathan Horton, who has been a 20-goal scorer in every season since 2005 and had 31 in the ’06-’07, said on Tuesday that he is determined to be a 30-goal scorer with the Bruins. Calling them a “stable, historic, and successful franchise,” Horton said he wants to be a difference-maker on a team that is no stranger to the playoffs.

“Definitely,” Horton said when asked if he is putting pressure on himself to make the Bruins the winner in a deal in which they shipped Dennis Wideman and two draft picks to the Panthers in exchange for Horton and fellow winger Gregory Campbell. “That’s what my goal is and I think it’s definitely reachable. I’m going to try my best and I’m very excited to wear the Bruins crest on my chest. I’m just very excited to be there. It’s a new opportunity and a new home and me and my family are just ecstatic right now.

“This is what every kid dreams about,” Horton added. “To be on an Original Six team and play for the Boston Bruins. I think if you’re a young kid and you’re coming in, it’s a dream come true.”

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Read More: 2010 NHL Draft, Nathan Horton,

Bruins get Horton, Campbell for Wideman, picks

06.22.10 at 1:58 pm ET
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TSN’s Bob McKenzie has reported the Bruins have traded Dennis Wideman, the 15th overall pick in Friday’s NHL draft, and a 3rd-round pick in 2011 to the Panthers in exchange for forwards Nathan Horton and Gregory Campbell. A source told WEEI.com Sunday night that Horton expected to be traded and that the Bruins were close to acquiring him.

Horton, who was the third overall pick by the Panthers in ’03 and the answer to any draft-day trivia question involving Marc-Andre Fluery (he was the player the Panthers took after trading down two spots and giving the top pick to the Penguins), hasn’t put up numbers that scream “top pick” in his NHL career. He has had just one 30-goal season (31 in ’06-’07) and hasn’t totaled more than 62 points in any of his six seasons.

The Bruins will likely play Horton at right wing after he spent the last two seasons playing center for the Panthers. Perhaps a move back to his natural position will lead to improved offensive output.

The Panthers had been trying to unload Horton, who carries a $4 million cap hit in each of the next three seasons. In trading Wideman and his $3,937,500 cap hit, the deal comes off as a financial wash. Campbell is a restricted free agent after carrying an $800,000 cap hit last season. Additionally, by not taking a player with the 15th overall pick (or higher had they moved up), the Bruins won’t be committed to a performance bonus-laden contract. If the cap stays as $56.8 million the Bruins would currently have just under $5 million in cap space, not accounting for an estimated $3.75 cap hit for Taylor Hall or Tyler Seguin.

Wideman was far from a fan favorite in Boston despite posting a plus-32 in the ’08-’09 season. Campbell, on the other hand is the son of NHL Director of Hockey Operations Colin Campbell. Should be an interesting exchange with Marc Savard on take-your-father-to-work day…

Read More: 2010 NHL Draft, Dennis Wideman, Nathan Horton,

Bruins release schedule

06.22.10 at 12:44 pm ET
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The Bruins released their regular season schedule for the 2010-11 season on Tuesday. After a pair of games in Prague against the Coyotes to open the season, the team will embark upon a two-game road trip in New Jersey and Washington before returing home to face the Capitals on Oct. 21. The Bruins will have their first rematch with the Flyers, who famously eliminated Boston in the Eastern Conference semifinals after climbing back from a 3-0 series defecit, on Dec. 1 when the B’s visit the Wachovia Center. Here is the complete schedule, courtesy of the Bruins (all times are local):

Saturday, October 9, vs. Phoenix (Prague, Czech Republic), 6 p.m.
Sunday, October 10, at Phoenix (Prague, Czech Republic), 4 p.m.
Saturday, October 16, at New Jersey, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, October 19, at Washington, 7 p.m.
Thursday, October 21, vs. Washington, 7 p.m.
Saturday, October 23, vs. New York Rangers, 7 p.m.
Thursday, October 28, vs. Toronto, 7 p.m.
Saturday, October 30, at Ottawa, 7 p.m.

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Bruins announce preseason schedule

06.21.10 at 12:58 pm ET
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The Bruins will travel to Belfast, Northern Ireland and play their Giants Select team as part of a presason that will build up to their October 9 season opener in Prague vs. the Coyotes. Here’s is the full schedule, courtesy of the Bruins (all times EST unless indicated otherwise):

September 14 (Shelton, CT): Bruins Rookies vs. Islanders Rookies, The Rinks at Shelton, 5:00 p.m.

September 15 (Shelton, CT): Bruins Rookies vs. Islanders Rookies, The Rinks at Shelton, 4:00 p.m.

September 17: Bruins Full Training Camp opens (practice times/location TBD)

September 22: Bruins at Montreal Canadiens, Bell Centre, 7:30 p.m.

September 23: Bruins vs. Florida Panthers, Blue Cross Arena, 7:00 p.m.

September 25: Bruins vs. Florida Panthers, TD Garden, 7:00 p.m.

September 28: Bruins at Washington Capitals, Verizon Center, 7:00 p.m.

September 29: Bruins vs. Washington Capitals, TD Garden, 7:00 p.m.

October 2 (Belfast, Northern Ireland): Bruins vs. Belfast Giants Select, Odyssey Arena, 7:00 p.m. local/ 2:00 p.m. ET

October 5 (Liberec, Czech Republic): Bruins vs. HC Liberec, Tipsport Arena, 7:00 p.m. local/ 1:00 p.m. ET

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