|Who is the biggest villain on the Canucks? You be the judge||06.12.11 at 12:19 am ET|
You’re going to find this hard to believe, but there are about five area codes full of people in New England who don’t like certain members of the Canucks these days. Some of it stems from the fact the Bruins are in a 3-2 Stanley Cup finals hole. But it stretches beyond just the issues that face Claude Julien‘s team as it sits on the brink of elimination.
It has gotten personal.
Which Canucks player is the biggest villain?
- Alexandre Burrows (63%, 239 Votes)
- Maxim Lapierre (20%, 76 Votes)
- Aaron Rome (9%, 36 Votes)
- Daniel and Henrik Sedin (4%, 15 Votes)
- Roberto Luongo (3%, 13 Votes)
Total Voters: 379
So the question is this: Which member of the Canucks has raised your ire the most? The choices are …
Reason for ire: Burrows got the animosity kicked into high gear in Game 1 when he (allegedly) chomped down on Patrice Bergeron‘s finger. Making matters worse was when the NHL offered no disciplinary action, leading to Burrows scoring two goals in Game 2, including the game-winner in overtime. Milan Lucic eased the pain of Bruins fans a bit in Game 3 by first pounding the forward’s head during a scrum, and then taunting him by offering his own finger. Yet, still, Burrows has already ingrained himself in Boston sports lore with his dastardly actions.
Reason for ire: Luongo was cruising along through the finals, simply serving as the other team’s goalie who had some good games, and (much to the delight of Bruins fans) some really bad ones. But then came the press conference following Game 5, when he uttered the following phrase regarding Max Lapierre‘s goal against Tim Thomas: ‘It’s not hard if you’re playing in the paint,’ Luongo said of the difficulty of the play. ‘It’s an easy save for me, but if you’re wandering out and aggressive like he does, that’s going to happen. He might make some saves that I won’t, but in a case like that, we want to take advantage of a bounce like that and make sure we’re in a good position to bury those.’ Matters were only made worse Saturday when Luongo not only didn’t back off the statement, but commented about how Thomas hadn’t complimented him (see video below).
Reason for ire: Lapierre first entered Bruins’ fans radar in Game 2 when he took “Bite-Gate” to another level, taunting Bergeron by holding out his finger as an offering to pull a “Burrows.” Boston’s Mark Recchi enacted some revenge by executing the same sort of shenanigans in Game 3, presenting his own finger to Lapierre for a sampling. Then came the ultimate disgrace in the eyes of Bruins fans: Lapierre scored the game-winner in Game 5. In the eyes of Boston fans, simply unacceptable.
Reason for ire: He left his feet to deliver the crushing open-ice hit on Nathan Horton that resulted in a concussion and the Bruins losing one of their top scorers for the rest of the playoffs. Sure, Rome tried to reach out to Horton to express his concern for the winger, and the NHL suspended Rome for four games, a period that will cover the rest of the Stanley Cup finals.
None of that is of any consolation to the Bruins, who lost one of their top offensive players while the Canucks go without a third-pairing defenseman. Most New Englanders viewed the play as dirty, and with the B’s offense sputtering in Game 5, it certainly could have been a difference-maker in the series.
HENRIK AND DANIEL SEDIN
Reason for ire: The were supposed to represent the reason Bruins fans should be wary of going up against the Canucks, but have done little live up to their reputation. They have been pushed around, with nary a sign of fighting back with what can be a boatload of hockey wizardry. But besides the fact that the twins are being viewed as posers by many who follow the B’s, also not helping their reputation was the pregame introduction the pair executed prior to Game 2, in which they called Burrows a vegetarian.
|Bruins-Canucks live blog: Maxim Lapierre makes it 1-0||06.10.11 at 7:51 pm ET|
VANCOUVER — Join DJ Bean and a cast of other from Vancouver for Game 5 of the Stanley Cup finals. The B’s are looking for their first series lead.
|Tim Thomas shuts out Canucks, Bruins even series||06.08.11 at 10:57 pm ET|
By DJ Bean and Scott McLaughlin
The Bruins evened the Stanley Cup finals up at two games apiece Wednesday night at TD Garden, chasing Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo on the way to a 4-0 win. Tim Thomas picked up his third shutout of the playoffs.
Rich Peverley, seeing time on the first line with Nathan Horton out for the remainder of the playoffs, had a two-goal night for the Bruins. His second of the night chased Luongo in the third period, making way for Marblehead native and former Boston College goalie Cory Schnieder. Peverley had entered the game with two goals the entire postseason.
As for Thomas, he has now allowed only five goals over his last five games, and one goal over the last two. He took a vicious hack at Alexandre Burrows after the Vancouver winger cross-checked him in the third period. Thomas took a slashing minor for the play.
The pre-game ceremonies were topped off by Bruins legend Bobby Orr waving a No. 18 flag in honor of Horton. With the B’s leading in the third period, chants of “Nathan Horton” filled the arena.
The B’s and Canucks will head to Vancouver for Friday’s Game 5. The teams will return to the Garden for Game 6 on Monday, the last Bruins’ home game of the season.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS
– Claude Julien‘s decision to give both Peverley and Ryder time on the first line in place of Horton paid off. David Krejci gave a nice pass to Peverley in the neutral zone in the first period, and Peverley flew past Raffi Torres en route to beating Luongo on a breakaway. Even following the goal, Ryder continued to see time with Krejci and Milan Lucic. Lucic and Krejci picked up assists on Peverley’s third-period goal, which chased Luongo from the game.
– Marchand was clearly a man on a mission, and for the second straight game, he was able to cash in. No, his second-period goal wasn’t anywhere near as pretty as his shorthanded goal in Game 3, but he certainly displayed a high level of skill and fanciness in putting together sound rushes. He also displayed his signature feistiness, though he needed to be calmed down a couple of times after dives from Henrik Sedin.
– We wrote here after Game 3 that the Bruins did a good job exposing Luongo’s weak glove — three of Monday’s goals beat the netminder high to the glove side. Ryder continued that trend in Game 4 when he snapped off a fluttering shot that Luongo just waved at with the leather. Luongo might’ve been screened a bit by his own defenseman, but it was still a shot he should’ve had. It wasn’t a rocket and it wasn’t a snipe — it was actually only about two feet off the ice. Not every shot high-glove is going to go in, but the Bruins would be well-advised to keep shooting there until Luongo proves he can stop it.
– When it came to his normal role as a third-liner, Ryder got some help from an old friend in Tyler Seguin. The rookie turned in a characteristically timid play in the Canucks’ zone, stopping short of going in the corner and allowing the Canucks to break it out as a result, but made up for it later in the shift by feeding Ryder.
Seguin’s assist was his first point since Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals. The Bruins are going to need both Ryder and Seguin to turn in big performances going forward, and on Wednesday Seguin showed that the good can outweigh the growing pains.
WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS
– When Peverley scored with 8:01 left in the first, shots were 7-5 Vancouver. Whether the Bruins eased up a little after the goal or the Canucks just picked up their play, shots for the rest of the period were 5-1 in favor of Vancouver. The Canucks didn’t generate a ton of sustained pressure or long offensive-zone possessions, but they were able to get shots on rushes and force Thomas to make some quality saves. The shot deficit carried over into the second, as Vancouver registered eight of the period’s first nine shots. The Bruins pressured Vancouver’s defense plenty during the first eight minutes of the second — even controlled play at times — but they couldn’t translate it into shots.
-At 16:10 of the first period, Marchand was called for cross-checking Kevin Bieksa. At full speed, it was easy to see why the ref thought it was a penalty, but replay showed that it was a pretty soft call. Bieksa had lost an edge and was already falling to the ice when Marchand barely got his stick on Bieksa’s back. Luckily, it didn’t cost the Bruins thanks to another great penalty kill.
Bieksa later rewrote the book on embellishment when he grabbed his face following a check from Mark Recchi in the third period. He apparently sold it well enough, as Recchi was sent to the box for high-sticking despite not making contact with his face in any way. Yes, Recchi should have controlled his stick better, but that’s a tough break when you don’t commit the infraction.
|Bruins-Canucks Live Blog: B’s chase Roberto Luongo, lead 4-0||06.08.11 at 7:45 pm ET|
Join DJ Bean, Mike Petraglia and many others from TD Garden for Game 4 of the Stanley Cup finals. The Bruins trail the Canucks, 2-1, in the series.
|Poll: How should NHL punish Canucks’ Aaron Rome?||06.07.11 at 8:15 am ET|
What's the appropriate punishment for Aaron Rome after his hit on Nathan Horton Monday night?
- The remainder of the finals (52%, 294 Votes)
- More than five games, continuing into next season (26%, 145 Votes)
- Two games (11%, 60 Votes)
- Three games (5%, 26 Votes)
- One game (4%, 22 Votes)
- No further punishment (3%, 15 Votes)
Total Voters: 562
|Bruins-Canucks Live Blog: Michael Ryder gives B’s 8-1 lead in third||06.06.11 at 7:38 pm ET|
Join DJ Bean, Mike Petraglia, Joey the Fish and plenty others from TD Garden for Game 3 of the Stanley Cup finals. Down two games to none, the Bruins are looking to use home ice to find their way back into the series.
|Bruins-Canucks Game 2 Live Blog: Headed to overtime||06.04.11 at 8:16 pm ET|