|12.07.10 at 11:01 pm ET|
It’s the dreaded “upper body injury” for Bruins defenseman Mark Stuart.
Stuart played just four shifts in the first period Tuesday night before suffering an undisclosed ailment, according to Bruins coach Claude Julien.
“He’ll be evaluated and let you know [Wednesday],” Julien said. “We’ll give you more [Wednesday] and he needs to be evaluated. We need to give you the right information.”
The Bruins defenseman totaled three minutes, 56 seconds on the ice in the first period before being forced out of the game. The Bruins practice Wednesday in Wilmington before hosting the New York Islanders on Thursday night at TD Garden. Julien did not speculate on Stuart’s availability on Thursday or Saturday, when the Bruins host the Flyers.
|12.07.10 at 10:05 pm ET|
Tuesday night’s battle of Vezina winners led to just the type of nail-biter one may have expected, as it took overtime to decide a 3-2 Bruins victory over the Sabres.
Nathan Horton, who had been slumping in recent weeks, intercepted a woefully irresponsible attempt at a clear by Sabres defenseman Mike Weber, taking the puck in front of the net and firing a wrist shot top-shelf glove-side to beat Miller and tie the game at two at 13:39 of the third period.
The B’s had found themselves to lose a game in regulation after scoring the first goal, a scenario they had never seen play out entering the game. Milan Lucic put the B’s on the board in the first, while the Sabres got goals from Adam and Thomas Vanek in the second and third periods, respectively.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS
– Horton now has two goals in as many games, and thanks to his two-point-night has four points in his last three games. He still isn’t showing what he showed early on the season, but his numbers are looking up.
– The Sabres truly appeared indifferent to the idea of clearing the puck responsibility. On top of Weber’s attempt, they struggled mightily and getting it out with Steve Montador in the penalty box late in the third.
– The Bruins outshot their opponent in the first period for the first time in five games. The B’s registered 12 shots on goal in the first 20 minutes to the Sabres’ eight. The Bruins last outshot their opponent in the first period on Nov. 26.
– Lucic keeps scoring, even if they aren’t the prettiest goals in the world. Lucic came from behind the net to fire a shot on Miller from the right circle. Miller most certainly should have made the save, but he let it just sneak in past the left post. Lucic continues to lead the Bruins in goals, as he now has 13 in 26 games.
– Recchi wasn’t the only player to fall victim to the post, as Vanek could have made it 3-1 were it not for his slap shot ringing off the right post in the third period.
WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS
– Missed opportunities, and boy were there many of them. Recchi, Michael Ryder, Blake Wheeler, David Krejci and Lucic were among the culprits on Tuesday, with Recchi serving as the night’s most snakebite Bruin. Recchi was stopped twice from the slot and later hit the post on a shorthanded 2-on-1 opportunity.
– Mark Stuart exited the game with an undisclosed injury. He missed the second and third periods. While the extent of his injury is currently unknown, it would be interesting to see if this means a call to Providence must be made. Remember, the Bruins haven’t had a seventh defenseman practicing with them since Adam McQuaid stepped in for the traded Matt Hunwick.
– Shawn Thornton and Milan also headed down the tunnel in the first and third periods, respectively with wrist injuries, though they both returned.
– Vanek showed that persistence pays off. When Tyler Myers missed the net wide, Vanek took a whack at it from behind the goal line, banking it off Thomas and in for his 11th goal of the season and making it a 2-1 game in the third.
|12.07.10 at 9:04 pm ET|
The Bruins didn’t capitalize on their second-period opportunities, and the Sabres did. It was as simple as that, as Buffalo got a goal from Luke Adam to tie the game at one.
– Mark Recchi had three opportunities, getting stuffed by Ryan Miller twice on shots from the slot and hitting the post on a shorthanded 2-on-1. David Krejci and Milan Lucic also failed to capitalize on plays in which they could have caught Miller out of position badly. Blake Wheeler joined Michael Ryder in the miss-the-net club for the night.
– Miller hasn’t been exceptional despite allowing one goal through the first two periods. He’s given up his share of rebounds ands he’s been out of position numerous times. The Bruins have either been slow to catch it or have missed the net.
– Mark Stuart did not play in the second period, as he is out for the game with an undisclosed injury.
|12.07.10 at 8:15 pm ET|
Ryan Miller had his career-high shutout streak of 161:35 snapped when he let a Milan Lucic shot from the right circle sneak behind the left post. As a result, the B’s are leading the Sabres, 1-0, after 20 minutes of play at TD Garden.
– The Michael Ryder – Marc Savard – Tyler Seguin line has gotten its chances, but sloppiness has been the demise of their opportunities. Seguin couldn’t catch two of Savard’s passes, and when the rookie hit Ryder on a 3-on-2 in which Miller was focused on Savard, Ryder missed the net.
– Shawn Thornton took an Andrew Ference shot off the right hand/wrist area in front of the net. After a brief trip down the tunnel, Thornton returned to bench and later returned to the ice.
– Former Bruin Steve Montador did the twist with Johnny Boychuk at 14:04, the only fight of the period. Montador got a roughing minor in addition to his fighting major, with the B’s failing to convert on their only power play. The Sabres have yet to go on the man advantage.
– The Bruins are outshooting the Sabres, 11-8.
|12.07.10 at 12:45 pm ET|
After falling to the Maple Leafs in a shootout on Saturday night, the Bruins are back at TD Garden, where they will face the Sabres. The B’s had no trouble handling handling Lindy Ruff’s squad in Buffalo on Nov. 3, scoring five goals against a backup cocktail of Jhonas Enroth and Patrick Lalime.
The groin injury that kept Ryan Miller out of that contest is a thing of the past, and the reigning Vezina winner is on fire. He’s coming off back-to-back shutouts, including a 1-0 shootout victory Saturday in Ottawa.
The Bruins held an optional morning skate on Tuesday. Tim Thomas and Mark Recchi were the only two to miss it, but given that Thomas is on a hot streak of his own (three goals allowed on 119 shots over the last three games), one would think he’d be between the pipes.
WHERE IT’S AT
– The Bruins are 5-5-2 in home games and are 5-4-2 in games played at TD Garden. They throttled the Lightning to the tune of an 8-1 victory last Thursday, their most recent home contest.
– Like the Bruins, the Sabres are a much better road team than they are a home team. They’ve compiled a 6-5-2 record away from Buffalo, while their 5-8-1 home record has a lot to do with why they’re currently fourth in the Northeast with 25 points.
– Thomas continues to lead the NHL in the three major goaltending statistics. His .956 save percentage, 1.46 goals against average, and five shutouts are tops in the league.
– Former Bruin Steve Montador is tied for second in the league with a plus-16. In 13 games for the Bruins in 2008-09, Montador a plus-3 and had two points. He added three more points and was a plus-5 in 11 playoff games.
– The Sabres are just about as bad offensively this year as the Bruins were last year. The B’s averaged a league-worst 2.39 goals per game last season, while Buffalo currently averages 2.4 a night, which is 25th in the league.
STORYLINES GOING IN
– Nathan Horton has shown signs of picking it up as of late, getting points in each of the last two games, including his first goal in 10 games Saturday. The sharpshooting winger still has just two points in his last eight games after registering 18 in the 17 prior.
– This will be the Bruins’ first game since sending Jordan Caron to Providence. Caron had been a healthy scratch in the last two games due to the return of Marc Savard, so geting the 20-year-old playing time is clearly in everyone’s best interest.
“It’s never an easy decision because the guy has been here since the beginning of the year,” Claude Julien told reporters after the morning skate. “At the same time, he’s a young player. I mean, David Krejci went back and forth and I don’t think that it hurt his career, except that it probably helped him, so I think those decisions are always made with the right intentions. Management wants to see him play and at this stage of his career, he can be brought up and down as much as we want, so I don’t think it’s an issue there because there’s no, he doesn’t have to clear waivers or anything like that. We just want to see him progress and he’s going to progress by playing.”
“With [Seguin’s] speed and using Savvy as a left hand shot, it’s a lot easier for him to pass to the right side. But we just kind of made that decision and all three guys are comfortable with that.”
|12.06.10 at 4:42 pm ET|
Boston Bruins General Manager Peter Chiarelli announced Tuesday afternoon that the team had assigned Jordan Caron to the Providence Bruins of the American Hockey League.
In his first pro season, the forward made the Bruins roster out of training camp. The 20-year-old has appeared in 20 games for the B’s, recording three goals and four assists. Caron was a healthy scratch for the last two games.
The Sayabec, Quebec native was selected by the Bruins in the first round (25th overall) of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.
For more Bruins coverage, visit weei.com/bruins.
|12.03.10 at 11:08 am ET|
Less than an hour after the Bruins croaked the Tampa Bay Lightning, 8-1, at TD Garden, Bruins coach Claude Julien was asked if the team was given an emotional boost by the return of Marc Savard after a bout of post-concussion syndrome.
“Boy, you’re giving him a lot of credit, aren’t you?” Julien quipped in his classically wry sense of humor. “It’s nice to have him back, obviously everybody’s happy to have him back, but you know, I think our players, as a whole, even yesterday when he wasn’t in the lineup, decided that they were going to play hard and play well and they did. So he just added to that, I guess, fuel for tonight.”
Savard skated 21 shifts in 15 minutes and 45 seconds, taking one shot while winning 5-of-10 face-offs on the night. But his impact was felt early when he got into the fray early with a fore-check. He played on several combo lines and everyone thought he didn’t miss a beat.
“I mean, he brought a lot of offense today,” two-goal scorer David Krejci said. “He wasn’t on the score sheet but he had a lot of last minute chances. We have big depth now with him and all four lines can score goals and it’s hard for their top defensemen to defend our top guys. So, it’s good to have him back and it’s good to see him and hopefully we will keep doing the same thing we did tonight.”
And that can only help this Bruins offense. It certainly appeared that way Thursday night.
“I think that’s the first eight goals the team has scored that I haven’t had anything on it, but I kept telling Claude I was a presence tonight,” Savard said BEFORE Julien’s post-game observation. “I felt good, obviously had some shifts where I felt a little tired and as the battles wore on, I just stood in front of Timmy [Thomas], so hopefully he can stop it. It was great to be back. The fans were fantastic. I got a little emotional there. It was a little tough to go out on that shift there, but it was special.”
Tim Thomas set the tone for the night, stepping aside before leading the team on the ice for pre-game warm-ups. Instead, Savard had that honor against Tampa Bay.
“I didn’t know what he was doing there. I didn’t even realize. I just thought he was stepping aside, that’s maybe what he does now. I just kept skating, then I looked over and no one was there, so it was kind of nice of the guys, I think they did that on purpose, but it was funny.”
Still, for skating in a game for the first time since May, it was quite the adjustment for Savard.
“I mean, it’s been six months, so it’s been a long time,” Savard said. “Shaking off a bit of rust, but you know, I felt I made some good plays. I felt there’s some stuff I can build off of, some things I can work on still, obviously. Battles I had a little trouble as the shift wore on in our zone a couple times, but I felt good, I felt strong. I got in there a couple times, tried to bang around, didn’t really move anybody, but it was a lot of fun.” Read the rest of this entry »