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Agent says Jimmy Vesey’s preferred teams are in Eastern Conference, including Bruins 08.14.16 at 4:37 pm ET
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Agent Peter Fish told WEEI.com’s DJ Bean that left wing Jimmy Vesey is a good bet to pick an Eastern Conference team when he makes his decision as a free agent this week. The following is an excerpt from Sunday’s piece on the status of the North Reading native:

According to sources familiar with the situation, Vesey has a short list of five or six teams that includes the Bruins and other teams in the northeast area, including the Rangers, Devils and Sabres. A source indicated that the player has something of a preference to play in the northeast; Fish declined to confirm, noting that Eastern Conference teams top Vesey’s list but that anything is possible. To that point, the Blackhawks remain on Vesey’s list after scouting him throughout the summer.

Because not much has changed regarding the player’s status, there has been merry-go-round speculation this summer. The Bruins were initially considered the best bet to sign Vesey after he indicated to Nashville that he would go to free agency.

Vesey’s camp monitored the offseason to see how roster-building might impact his fit with the clubs they desired and were not discouraged by Don Sweeney’s moves. Though the emergence of other teams piquing the player’s interest have played into the revolving door regarding rumored favorites, Vesey’s camp cannot envision a scenario in which the Bruins aren’t among the finalists for the player.

“There’s no question that the Boston Bruins are going to have their say [if Vesey becomes a free agent],” Fish said. “There’s obviously room on their depth chart for Jimmy and he grew up a Bruins fan. They’re obviously, in my opinion, a well-run organization. They’re going to have their say.”

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Report: NHL settles on Las Vegas for expansion team 06.14.16 at 1:24 pm ET
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The NHL appears to be Las Vegas-bound. (USA Today Sports)

The NHL appears to be Las Vegas-bound. (USA Today Sports)

It appears the NHL is heading to Las Vegas. According to the Associated Press, the league has settled on Las Vegas for an expansion team, provided organizers can come up with a $500 million fee.

Las Vegas would become the NHL’s 31st team, with the expansion occurring for the 2017-18 season at the earliest. The franchise would be the first professional sports franchise in Las Vegas.

According to the AP, the Las Vegas bid has secured more than 13,200 season ticket deposits for the new team, which will play in the brand new, 17,500-seat T-Mobile Arena.

The AP says Quebec City was also considered for expansion, but that some owners have expressed concerns over the strength of the Canadian dollar as well as greater geographical imbalance if another eastern team were added. Seattle and the Toronto area have both popped up in expansion rumors in the past, too.

The NHL last expanded in 2000, when the Minnesota Wild and Columbus Blue Jackets joined the league.

Former Bruin Dan LaCouture pleads not guilty after weekend arrest for assaulting woman on Cape Cod 06.01.16 at 9:19 am ET
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Dan LaCouture

Dan LaCouture

Former Bruins forward Dan LaCouture pleaded not guilty Tuesday after being arrested over the weekend and charged with assaulting a woman outside her Cape Cod home, according to the Cape Cod Times.

LaCouture, 39, allegedly hid under the woman’s vehicle Saturday while his friend had a discussion with her in her driveway, then emerged and struck the woman in the collarbone. The victim later discovered that the windows on her GMC Yukon were smashed, and a large rock was on the driver’s seat.

Police were called to the Centerville home just after 6 p.m., and they met with LaCouture and the woman. LaCouture was arrested and charged with one count of assault and battery and two counts of vandalizing property.

LaCouture is due back in Barnstable court July 15 for a pretrial hearing.

LaCouture played in the NHL from 1998 until 2009, including a 55-game stint with the Bruins during the 2005-06 season. He is one of six former players who filed a class-action lawsuit accusing the NHL of exploiting players by encouraging violence and failing to warn the players about the risks of head injuries. According to federal court documents, LaCouture participated in 52 fights and had about 20 concussions, and he now has symptoms consistent with chronic traumatic encephalopathy.

A former Natick High School star who played one season at Boston University, LaCouture was a first-round draft pick of the Islanders in 1996. He recorded 20 goals, 25 assists and 348 penalty minutes in 337 career games with the Oilers, Penguins, Rangers, Bruins, Devils and Hurricanes.

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Claude Julien ‘absolutely’ will be back next season, changes to coaching staff coming 04.14.16 at 10:14 am ET
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Claude Julien will be back as Bruins coach next season. (USA Today Sports)

Claude Julien will be back as Bruins coach next season. (Winslow Townson/USA Today Sports)

Claude Julien will be back as coach of the Bruins next season.

General manager Don Sweeney announced at the start of Thursday’s end of season press conference that Claude Julien “absolutely” will return.

The Bruins did not make the postseason each of the last two seasons.

Sweeney also announced assistant coach Doug Houda won’t return and other assistants’ deals are up with the exception of goalie coach Bob Essensa. He’s been the goalie coach since 2003.

Houda’s time with the Bruins predates that of Julien, as Houda served as an assistant coach under former B’s head coach Dave Lewis and was kept on after Lewis’ firing. As a player, Houda served as a teammate of Zdeno Chara when the two played for the Islanders.

Other coaches who won’t return are Doug Jarvis and Joe Sacco.

Jarvis was hired prior to the 2010-11 season as a replacement for Craig Ramsay. As a player, Jarvis holds the record for most consecutive games played with 964. Sacco, who formerly served as head coach of the Avalanche and was also an assistant coach for the Sabres, replaced former B’s assistant coach Geoff Ward in the summer of 2014 when Ward left the team to take a head-coaching job in Germany. Ward is currently an assistant coach for the Devils.

For more Bruins news, visit weei.com/bruins.

Read More: Claude Julien, Don Sweeney,
Dale Arnold: Bruins should make Patrice Bergeron captain, trade Zdeno Chara and David Krejci 04.12.16 at 9:27 pm ET
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Dale Arnold gave his plan for how he would return the Bruins to the playoffs.

On Tuesday’s Dale & Holley show, Arnold said an offseason priority should be to make Patrice Bergeron captain, regardless of whether Zdeno Chara — whom Arnold said should be traded — was back with the team.

“I think it’s time to change the captain,” Arnold said. “Assuming he’s on this team next year, Patrice Bergeron has to have the ‘C’ on his sweater and not Zeno Chara. I’d start there because they had a huge leadership void on this team all season long.”

Arnold said he would buy out Jimmy Hayes, who was a disappointment in the first year of a three-year contract with the B’s. Hayes, whose cap hit is $2.3 million, scored 13 goals in his first year with his hometown team.

“I’d buy out Jimmy Hayes — $2.3 million for each of the next two seasons, bad signing by Don Sweeney,” Arnold said. “I would buy out Jimmy Hayes, take the financial hit, move on while you can.”

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Sunday Skate live chat: Tired edition 03.20.16 at 6:36 am ET
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Hockey? Good. We’re tired. Listen live.

Live Blog Sunday Skate Live Chat: Tired Edition
 

What we learned as Bruins suffer 2nd Cali loss, shut out by Ducks 03.19.16 at 12:33 am ET
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Jonas Gustavsson

Jonas Gustavsson

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.

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Read More: Anaheim Ducks, Boston Bruins, Fredrik Anderson,

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