|Kevan Miller leaves with upper-body injury as Bruins shut out Sabres||10.18.14 at 9:38 pm ET|
The Bruins had to play with only five defensemen Saturday night, but three of them scored as the B’s took an easy 4-0 win over the Sabres.
After Kevan Miller had left the game following a fight, Dougie Hamilton scored his first goal of the season on a wrist shot from the point and picked up a secondary assist on a Zdeno Chara blast to make it 2-0 in the first period.
Torey Krug netted his first of the season as well, taking a puck off the boards and beating Jhonas Enroth with a wrist shot at 11:40 of the second. Just over three minutes later, Carl Soderberg roofed a backhander in front to make it 4-0.
The Bruins will next play Tuesday in Boston against the Sharks.
Here are some observations from the game:
– Miller left after fighting Nicolas Deslauriers on his fifth shift of the game, leaving the B’s to manage with five defensemen for the vast majority of the game. After the game, Claude Julien told reporters that Miller sustained an upper-body injury in the fight.
The task for Bruins blueliners became tougher in the second period, when an early penalty from Adam McQuaid and a late penalty from Dennis Seidenberg meant more responsibility and minutes on the penalty kill for the rest of Boston’s defense.
– Speaking of penalties, the Sabres are so bad this season. The Bruins took seven penalties, giving Buffalo nearly 13 and a half minutes of time on the man advantage, and the Sabres still failed to beat Svedberg.
– Saturday marked Simon Gagne’s first full game playing with David Krejci and Milan Lucic. He didn’t land a shot on goal, but Gagne’s plus-10 Corsi was tied for second among all players, with only Krug fairing better with a plus-14 Corsi.
– The Bruins were terrific in front of the net in offensive zone, with Reilly Smith putting in the work on the goals scored by Hamilton and Chara, while Krejci getting in front of Enroth off the faceoff facilitated Krug’s goal.
In their own end, the B’s were just as tough. They blocked a ton of shots against the Sabres, getting in front of 22 of them.
– Another game, another great showing from Carl Soderberg’s line. He and Chris Kelly lead the team with five points apiece.
– Patrice Bergeron had the assist on Hamilton’s goal, giving the Bruins center 499 career points. That ties him with Adam Oates for 13th all-time in Bruins history. Just a hunch, but the guess here is that he gets to 500 at some point.
|Milan Lucic apologizes for ‘embarrassing’ Bruins vs. Canadiens||10.18.14 at 1:13 pm ET|
Milan Lucic apologized Saturday morning for the fine-warranting gesture he made at Canadiens fans Thursday night.
Lucic made the obscene gesture as he entered the penalty box with 1:20 to play in the Bruins’ eventual 6-4 loss to the Canadiens. He argued with a referee after the Habs added a power play empty-netter, which earned him a game misconduct. He did not speak to the media after the game and was fined $5,000 for the gesture on Friday.
“I’m not proud of what I did there. I just want to apologize to our organization for embarrassing the Bruins organization,” Lucic told reporters Saturday morning in Buffalo.
“I also want to apologize to our fans and also apologize to the Montreal Canadiens organization and the Canadiens fans,” he added. “I know they can get under your skin sometimes but they are great fans. I apologize for my actions. I regret what I did.”
Lucic had a pair of assists in Thursday’s game, which were his first two points of the season. According to ESPN Boston’s Joe McDonald, Simon Gagne skated on Lucic’s line with David Krejci in Saturday’s morning skate after finishing the last two games in that spot. Gagne scored late in Thursday’s game while playing with the duo.
Matt Fraser reportedly skated on the fourth line with Daniel Paille and Gregory Campbell. Such a move is interesting, as Paille played right wing Thursday when Gagne was on the line. Perhaps that was preparation for Fraser, far more effective on the left wing than on the right, to return to the lineup in the position he plays best.
|Bruins say laser pointer didn’t hurt them vs. Canadiens||10.17.14 at 12:32 am ET|
MONTREAL — Some bozo was shining a laser pointer on the ice throughout Thursday night’s game between the Bruins and the Canadiens. Though they should have taken the opportunity to use it as an excuse, the Bruins said it didn’t impact the game.
The laser, a thick green dot, could be seen throughout the first two periods. It was pointed at Gregory Campbell‘s feet during a second-period faceoff and could also be seen moving around Tuukka Rask‘s net.
Campbell said he didn’t notice the laser during the game. Rask said he did, but had no idea that he was one of the players the fan was intending to distract.
“At me? No,” Rask said when asked if he saw the laser. “I saw it in the second, but it was in the offensive zone. Good thing I didn’t go blind or anything.”
|Video: Milan Lucic makes obscene gesture at Canadiens fans||10.17.14 at 12:27 am ET|
MONTREAL — Milan Lucic did nothing to improve his relationship with the Canadiens and their fans Thursday night.
Lucic, who surpassed Zdeno Chara as Boston Enemy No. 1 last season with a spearing incident with Alexei Emelin (after which he called Emelin a “chicken”) and some choice words in the post-Game 7 handshake line (after which he called Dale Weise a “baby”), took a late boarding penalty Thursday due to a hit he put on Emelin with less than a minute and a half to play.
As he entered the penalty box to massive boos from the crowd, Lucic made an obscene gesture with his glove near his pants (there’s really no way to word it) before doing what looked like a mock Stanley Cup raise. After P.A. Parenteau sealed the game with an empty netter for Montreal, Lucic was given a game misconduct for yelling at an official as he exited the penalty box.
Lucic had reason to be angry with the situation as he was penalized. The Bruins were down a goal in the final minutes and Emelin was crazy to turn in the boards the way that he did when Lucic was coming in to hit him, but the gestures should earn him supplemental discipline. Such gestures, including a similar one from James Wisniewski in 2010, have been suspendable in the past.
Lucic was not available to the media after the game. The Bruins would not specify whether Lucic had declined to talk or whether it was the team’s decision.
|Canadiens hand Bruins their latest loss||10.16.14 at 10:32 pm ET|
David Krejci‘s blast from the point during a first-period power play grazed Zdeno Chara in front and sailed past Carey Price to give the Bruins a 1-0 lead on Chara’s first goal of the season. After Dennis Seidenberg was penalized for holding David Desharnais’ stick, Max Pacioretty scored a power play goal to tie the game.
Brendan Gallagher scored 7:43 into the second to give Montreal its first lead of the night, but the Bruins’ third line gave the B’s the lead again with goals from Carl Soderberg and Loui Eriksson, the latter of which came off a Torey Krug pass that hit the wing in front and ricocheted in.
Jiri Sekac scored his first career goal, getting to the front of the net and burying a puck past a falling Rask as Dennis Seidenberg and Rene Bourque battled. The goal came amidst some shoddy coverage from Boston’s fourth line, which had Gregory Campbell for the first time this season.
P.A. Parenteau scored his first goal as a Canadien late in the second period to make it 4-3, while Gallagher’s second of the night chased Rask 7:17 into the third.
The Bruins’ chances of a comeback were killed in the final minutes when Milan Lucic took a boarding penalty for a hit on Alexei Emelin with less than a minute and a half to play. A Parenteau empty-netter — his second goal of the game — sealed the win for Montreal.
Simon Gagne brought the Bruins within one with less than six minutes to play after being moved from the fourth line to David Krejci‘s line. The goal was Gagne’s first goal of the season, as he made his Bruins debut Wednesday.
The loss dropped the Bruins to 2-4-0 this season, while the Habs improved to 4-1-0.
Here are some observations from the game.
– The Bruins rarely allow 5-on-5 goals when Zdeno Chara and Patrice Bergeron are on the ice, which is one of the things that annually makes the Bruins among the best 5-on-5 teams in the league. For a frame of reference, they allowed just one such goal in the lockout-shortened season.
On Thursday, the B’s allowed one such goal, as Gallagher’s second goal came against Bergeron and Chara. Gallagher’s second goal of the night marked the second time the B’s have given up a 5-on-5 goal with both stars on the ice, as Alexander Ovechkin accomplished the feat last week.
– Carl Soderberg’s line with Loui Eriksson and Chris Kelly is too good to break up. Though it’s technically Boston’s third line, it has played against higher competition all season and has enjoyed long stays in the offensive zone. Eriksson has obviously been a candidate to potentially play right wing on Krejci’s line, but Claude Julien would be wise to keep the trio together at this point.
Soderberg’s goal came off a pair of rebounds, as Eriksson jumped on a rebound in front, with Kelly’s shot off that rebound yielding the rebound on which Soderberg would score.
Additionally, Soderberg’s line was the Bruins’ only trio to not surrender a goal in the game.
– Thursday marked the first time this season that the Bruins scored more than two goals in a game.
– Dennis Seidenberg‘s season is off to a rough start. He took a holding the stick penalty in the first period that led to Pacioretty’s goal and had a turnover about seven minutes into the third in the defensive zone that led to a Montreal scoring chance.
– Campbell and his line had its struggles against Montreal’s bottom-six forwards, allowing lengthy Habs possessions and being passive in front of the net on Sekac’s goal. Campbell missed all of training camp and is a work in progress.
– P.K. Subban was the latest victim of embellishment calls, as he was given a penalty for appropriately reacting to getting speared by Brad Marchand. The NHL is giving out warnings for embellishing before fining players and coaches, but the video is first reviewed. It would be foolish if Subban received a warning, just as it would have been for Marchand to get one last week when he was wrongfully penalized against the Red Wings.
– Some goofball was shining a thick green laser on the ice during a game. The green dot was aimed at Tuukka Rask, among other spots on the ice.
The lineup was as follows:
Marchand – Bergeron – Smith
Lucic – Krejci – Griffith
Kelly – Soderberg – Eriksson
Gagne – Campbell – Paille
Chara – Hamilton
Seidenberg – McQuaid
Krug – Miller
|Gregory Campbell a game-time decision for Bruins Thursday||10.16.14 at 6:36 pm ET|
Campbell missed all of training camp and the Bruins’ first five games with a core injury. In his place, the Bruins used Craig Cunningham at center for the Bruins’ first three games and Ryan Spooner for the last two. The Bruins clearly haven’t been satisfy with their play in that spot, as Spooner was given just 4:22 of ice time in Wednesday’s game, which also featured a five-minute overtime.
According to Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe, Spooner will be sent to Providence to play wing once Campbell is ready to play.
For more Bruins news, visit weei.com/bruins.
|P.K. Subban: Canadiens ‘don’t care about the fireworks’||10.16.14 at 12:23 pm ET|
BROSSARD, Quebec — P.K. Subban had enough fun last postseason against the Bruins, but that’s probably because his team won.
So as he looks forward to the Canadiens’ home opener against the Bruins Thursday night, he says he isn’t thinking about how the scoreboard looks at the end of the game.
“I’m sure you guys want me to say that there’s going to be fireworks, and I don’t know. Our focus is winning the game,” Subban said after Thursday’s morning skate at Bell Sports Complex. “We don’t care about the fireworks, the dance, the crowd. No. We’ve got to focus on what we can control, and that’s how we play. The final result’s the most important thing.”
Subban had seven points (four goals, three assists) in Montreal’s second-round victory against Boston last postseason. Preseason aside, Thursday will mark the first time the teams play at Bell Centre since Montreal forced a Game 7 last May with a 4-0 win in Game 6.
Subban says the biggest factor Thursday will be the fact that the Habs are in front of their home crowd for the first time this season.
“I think you do get hyped up for it,” he said. “You get hyped up for a home opening game. Everybody does. That’s why they’re so tough to play on the road. So tough to play in home openers because home teams get so hyped up for them. We’ll be ready to go.”
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