Archive for March, 2013

UPDATE: Penguins, not Bruins, trade for Jarome Iginla

Thursday, March 28th, 2013

UPDATE [1:29 AM] Despite reports that Jarome Iginla to Boston was a done deal, the Penguins swooped in and swung a deal for the Flames captain. The deal leaves Boston without its top trade target.

In the press conference to announce the trade, Calgary general manager Jay Feaster indicated that Iginla, who listed the Bruins, Penguins, Blackhawks and Kings as teams for which he’d waive his no-trade clause, wanted to play for the Penguins. Asked about reports that the Bruins and Flames had swung a deal, Feaster said Pittsburgh was Iginla’s preference.

“We had multiple teams that we were dealing with, had multiple offers,” Feaster said. “At the end of the day, it’s a process of working with the player. Certainly the player has a role to play when the player has a no-trade/no-move, and in this instance, the deal that we consummated, this is where the player was prepared to waive for.”

The Penguins, who lead the Eastern Conference with 52 points and acquired former Stars captain Brenden Morrow, traded prospects Kenneth Agostino, Ben Hanowski and 2013 first-round pick. Feaster said that multiple teams had offered a first-round pick in their packages. The Bruins’ package was believed to be center Alexander Khokhlachev, defenseman Matt Bartkowski and a first-rounder.

Iginla, 35, has played his entire NHL career for the Flames since being acquired in a trade from Dallas. He was drafted 11th overall by the Stars in 1995 but never played for Dallas.

In his 16 NHL seasons, Iginla has 525 goals and 570 assists for 1,095 points. He has nine goals and 13 assists for 22 points in 31 games this season.

Iginla was a healthy scratch for Wednesday’s game against Colorado, leading to speculation that a deal would soon be made. It was made, just not the team people suspected.

For more Bruins news, visit the team page at weei.com/bruins.

We were talking to the teams that the player had put on his list, and then once we had offers from teams — and we had multiple offers — then we went about the process of working with the player. The player still has to agree to waive the no-trade/no-move.

Offense comes back to life in 6-5 shootout loss

Thursday, March 28th, 2013

Because six Bruins failed to beat Peter Budaj in a shootout, the clearest takeaway from the Bruins’ 6-5 loss to Montreal on Wednesday was another blown third-period lead. However, the reason the Bruins had a lead to blow was that the offense came alive for the first time in a week and half, with five different players scoring.

In their last five games before Wednesday, the Bruins had 10 goals (and one of those came in a shootout). Against Montreal, they knocked Carey Price out of the net with four goals in the second period and finished the game with 41 shots.

“It was nice to see us score some goals tonight,” Bruins coach Claude Julien said. “We’ve been a little dry lately, and we managed to score five, so that was nice to see.”

Perhaps it was a bad omen when Dougie Hamilton was the first Bruin on the board, as they’re now 0-4 when he scores. Still, Hamilton cut Montreal’s lead in half just 39 seconds after P.K. Subban had made it 2-0, and his goal sparked a momentum shift in the Bruins’ direction.

Patrice Bergeron’s line reappeared with a vengeance, recording a total of nine points between Bergeron, Brad Marchand and Tyler Seguin. Each scored a goal, and Bergeron added three assists. Seguin had two and Marchand one.

That was especially encouraging for Marchand, as the second-chance goal he scored to tie the game at two was only his second in the last 12 games. After a shaky start to the game, Nathan Horton also broke a drought, scoring for the first time in six games and only the second time in the last 15.

The Bruins’ last two goals came on rushes, with perfectly timed passes through the slot, but their first three came from persistence on second and third chances. Despite being pulled after allowing four goals on 26 shots, Price made the Bruins work for their first three. They were equal to the challenge, winning races to rebounds and maintaining possession in the zone until they found clear shooting lanes.

Although Bergeron’s line, the Bruins’ most productive this year, ended up playing together by the middle of the game, they didn’t start the night that way. Julien started Daniel Paille with Bergeron and Seguin instead, and Marchand said the change, however brief, helped him.

“Maybe just to let me know I’ve got to simplify a little bit,” Marchand said. “At times, when you play with each other for a while, you start only looking for each other, and try to make pretty plays instead of doing things that work, which is keeping it simple and taking pucks to the net. And that’s what worked for us tonight.”

Claude Julien acknowledges Jarome Iginla trade rumors swirling

Wednesday, March 27th, 2013

Bruins coach Claude Julien acknowledged the trade rumors involving Calgary Flames veteran superstar Jarome Iginla were swirling around his team after the Bruins blew it two-goal lead in the third period and lost 6-5 to the Montréal Canadiens in a shootout Wednesday night at TD Garden.

“I don’t know if it affected the game, but I know it’s present,” Julien said. “You know, there’s a lot of rumors circling around our team. I called a couple players into my office just to talk before the game about certain things and they were a little jumpy – they were all expected the worst news. And it had nothing to do with trades more than talking about the game. So it’s present and it’s pretty obvious why.

Julien also would not offer specific comment on two controversial calls against the Bruins late in the third that eventually ended in the game-tying goal, unlike earlier in the month when he accused the Canadiens of “embellishment” in drawing penalties in a win at TD Garden over the Bruins.

Trade loss: With Jarome Iginla rumors swirling, B’s blow lead, lose shootout to Habs

Wednesday, March 27th, 2013

Brad Marchand helped the Bruins erase an early 2-0 hole against the Canadiens. (AP)

Brendan Gallagher scored the decisive goal in the sixth round of the shootout as the Canadiens beat the Bruins, 6-5, in overtime Wednesday night at TD Garden. Gallagher also scored once in the third period before the Canadiens tied it with 8.2 seconds left in regulation. The Bruins had a pair of two-goal leads but couldn’t hold on, as they fell a point behind the Canadiens in the Northeast Division. The Bruins went 0-for-6 in the shootout while Gallagher was the only Canadien to score in six tries.

Patrice Bergeron scored a goal and added three assists while Tyler Seguin added a goal and two assists

With his team battling for the top spot in the Northeast Division six floors below, Bruins president Cam Neely went back and forth on the ninth floor, shadowed by security. This led to speculation about whether the Bruins might be ready to pull the trigger on a major trade for Calgary Flames star Jarome Iginla, who was scratched from his game Wednesday night, the first game the 35-year-old has missed since Feb. 2007.

For a second straight game, Claude Julien juggled his lines at the start before reverting midway through the game. And, for the second straight game against a division rival, the Bruins came out flat in the first period. They were held without a shot for the first eight minutes of the game.

With the exception of Seguin, the Canadiens generated most of the energy on the ice in the opening 20 minutes. It paid off for the visitors when former Bruin Michael Ryder got enough on a snap shot from the low slot and beat Tuukka Rask just 4:15 into the game for a 1-0 lead.

The Canadiens appeared to be in the driver’s seat when arch-nemesis P.K. Subban blasted a slap shot from the right point through a screen and past Rask 2:53 into the second period for a 2-0 lead.

Despite falling behind for the fourth straight game, the Bruins did not panic. And as they did on Monday, when they also fell behind by two goals at the start to the Maple Leafs, the Bruins woke up just in time.

It was a rush from Seguin that got things going 30 seconds after the Subban goal. Seguin came flying down the right wing and fired a shot off the crossbar. The puck came down in front of Bergeron. He couldn’t put it in the open net but Dougie Hamilton was in the right place at the right time and drilled a one-timer from between the circles past Price and the comeback was on.

Less than four minutes later, with Julien again rejoining his regular lines, Marchand netted the game-tying goal by battling for position in front of Price and knocking the puck past the Montreal goalie. Marchand, who started the game on the third line with Rich Peverley and Jordan Caron, was reunited with Bergeron and Seguin. It was Seguin who won the battle in the corner and fired the puck in front of the net for Marchand.

After Lars Eller hauled down Shawn Thornton on a rush down the left wing, the Bruins went on the power play. With 14 seconds left on the man advantage, Bergeron potted his 10th of the season to put the Bruins up, 3-2. The play was set up when Zdeno Chara fed Torey Krug, called up earlier in the day. Krug fired a shot from the right point. The shot deflected off Rich Peverley in front and onto the stick of Bergeron who finished it off.

With the Garden crowd still buzzing, David Krejci fed Nathan Horton on a mini-break and Horton beat Price 35 seconds later for a 4-2 lead. After spotting the Canadiens the game’s first three shots in the opening seven minutes, the Bruins outshot Montreal 26-8 and finished with a 26-11 advantage after 40 minutes.

Price was pulled in favor of Peter Budaj to start the third. Andrew Ference drew a hooking penalty and the Bruins had a power play but could generate little momentum. Then moments later, Ryder added his second of the night, drawing the Canadiens within one, 4-3, with just over 16 minutes still left in regulation.

With Hamilton in the penalty box for holding, Budaj kept the Canadiens in the game with a huge save on Gregory Campbell on a shorthanded breakaway with 10 minutes left. Seguin then gave the Bruins huge insurance with a backhander to beat Budaj with just over eight minutes left, putting Boston up, 5-3. The Canadiens made it a one goal game again as the Seguin goal was being announced as Brendan Gallagher got a lucky bounce off the mouth Dennis Sidenberg and beat Rask with 7:42 left. The Bruins killed off their first five shorthanded situations, including an elbowing call on Chara with 4:40 left in regulation.

But a delay of game on Aaron Johnson with 1:27 left, led to a 6-on-4 with Montreal’s empty net. A shot from Subban deflected off the stick of Chara past Rask with 8.2 seconds left to tie the game. Andrei Markov was credited with the goal The Bruins got a power play with 1:20 left in overtime when Alexei Emelin was called for a hooking penalty. Krejci had one final chance to win it but Budaj smothered the shot from the right circle two seconds before the end of overtime.

The Bruins are off Thursday and Friday before visiting Philadelphia for a matinee with the Flyers on Saturday. For more, visit the Bruins team page at weei.com/bruins.

Bruins blow another third-period lead, lose to Habs in shootout

Wednesday, March 27th, 2013

The Bruins blew their latest third-period lead, allowing the Habs to come back from a 5-3 deficit in the third to force overtime and eventually beat the B’s in a shootout, 6-5. The win puts the Habs, who have played one more game than Boston, ahead of the B’s in the Northeast Division with 47 points to Boston’s 46.

Brendan Gallagher, who factored into the final two goals in the third to tie it, scored the game-winner in the sixth round of the shootout after the teams were a combined 0-for-11.

The Bruins came back from a 2-0 Canadiens lead (goals from Michael Ryder and P.K. Subban) by exploding in the second period with goals from Dougie Hamilton, Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron and Nathan Horton. The second-period outburst by the B’s landed Carey Price on the bench to begin the third period, with Peter Budaj taking over.

After Ryder scored his second goal of the night in the third period to make it 4-3, Tyler Seguin scored a breakaway goal to give the B’s the two-goal lead again. Gallagher made it 5-4 with 7:42 to play and Andrei Markov tied it with less than 10 seconds to play on a power-play goal.

For the second straight game, the Bruins started with tweaked lines before returning to their normal trios. Marchand began on the third line with Rich Peverley and Jordan Caron before being returned to Bergeron’s line in the second period.

WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS

- Stop me if you’ve heard this before, but the Bruins blew a two-goal lead in the third period. Holding on in the final period continues to be an issue for this team, and it’s the second time in three games against Montreal this season in which the B’s have allowed the Habs to come back in the third.

- The Bruins had to kill off two penalties in the final 10 minutes of a one-goal game game thanks to penalties to Zdeno Chara (elbowing at 15:11) and Aaron Johnson (delay of game with 1:27 left). Bergeron came up with a mammoth clear by swiping the puck out of the zone with just over 30 seconds to play, but the Habs had time to get set up again, with Andrei Markov firing shot past Tuukka Rask to tie the game.

- Some tough luck for Dennis Seidenberg, as the puck bounced up and hit him in the face (luckily he wears a shield) before Gallagher took it and put it around and past Rask.

- Michael Ryder struck again, but this time he did it twice. The former Bruin has now scored in both games against the B’s since being re-acquired by the Habs, and he was able to beat Rask to open the scoring despite taking quite a while to handle the puck after receiving the puck at the left circle from Tomas Plekanec. With his two goals Wednesday, Ryder now has 12 goals on the season.

- Holy smokes is P.K. Subban a bad man. His second-period goal — an absolute laser of a slapshot from the right point that beat Tuukka Rask top right corner — was reminiscent of his game-tying goal against Tim Thomas in Game 7 of the 2011 Eastn Conference quarterfinals. He also had an end-to-end rush in the second in which he went past three Bruins before being stopped by Rask. Bruins fans might not like him, but Pernell Karl is as talented as they come and pretty exciting to watch.

WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS

- A couple of goal-scorers who hadn’t been scoring too much were able to find the back of the net, as Marchand scored his second goal in the last 12 games and Nathan Horton picked up his second in the last 15 games. Marchand was all alone in front of net on his second-period tally, and scored it the hard way despite being set up to score it pretty easily. Marchand was all alone in front of Price when he took the feed from Bergeron and had plenty of time before backhanding it over the net. The scrappy forward stuck with the play though, picking up the puck as it bounced off the boards and jamming it in to tie the game at two.

- Bergeron had a four-point night (one goal, three assists), but his performance was already notable prior to him getting his third assist of the night on Seguin’s goal. Some great research from WEEI’s Michael Berger, who pointed out that Wednesday’s performance from Bergeron gives him three three-point games this month, which makes for the most three-point games he’s had in a single month in his entire career. Of course, this month has more games than usual given that it’s a more compressed schedule, but it’s still impressive to see such a good performance from a Bruin in a month that has given the B’s trouble in recent years.

- Hamilton now has points in consecutive games (a goal and an assist) after going the previous 10 contests without a point. He was back on the 2-on-1 that yielded Michael Ryder’s goal and took a holding penalty in the third period of a one-goal game, but it’s good to see the points starting to come a bit more for the rookie.

- Playing in his first NHL game of the season after being recalled Wednesday, defenseman Torey picked up his first point of the season by assisting Bergeron’s goal on the power play. Krug was actually pretty shaky on the earlygoing of the man-advantage, struggling to handle the puck, but his slapshot yielded a rebound that found its way from Rich Peverley to Bergeron.

Bruins recall Torey Krug from Providence

Wednesday, March 27th, 2013

The Bruins recalled defenseman Torey Krug from Providence Wednesday, and the 21-year-old will be available for Wednesday night’s game against the Canadiens.

In 55 games for Providence this season, Krug has 10 goals and 24 assists for 34 points and a minus-6 rating. The timing of the callup is intriguing given that it’s a week before the trade deadline. The Bruins may have recalled him for a potential showcase or as a body in the event that they move one of the defensemen currently on the roster.

For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.

Report: Bruins claim shootout comedian Kaspars Daugavins

Wednesday, March 27th, 2013

According to ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun, the Bruins have claimed forward Kaspars Daugavins off waivers from the Senators.

Daugavins, who Bruins fans will remember for his zany shootout attempt against Tuukka Rask earlier this month, has one goal and two assists for three points and a minus-6 rating in 19 games for Ottawa this season.

For what it’s worth, Daugavins is 1-for-3 on shootout attempts this season.