|Jarome Iginla helps Penguins past Bruins||04.20.13 at 3:16 pm ET|
It was bad enough that Jarome Iginla didn’t want to play for the Bruins, but on Saturday he helped the Penguins defeated the B’s, 3-2, at TD Garden.
With Brad Marchand in the box for roughing, Iginla scored on a slapshot from the point 4:43 into the third period to break a 1-1 tie. The puck went through traffic before zipping past Tuukka Rask’s five-hole. Kris Letang scored on a wrist shot at 8:29 of the third to make it 3-1. Tyler Seguin scored with 2.6 seconds left to make it a one-goal late, but it was too little, too late.
The win was Pittsburgh’s sixth straight and it allowed the Penguins (66 points) to sew up the top seed in the Eastern Conference for the season. The Bruins (57 points), meanwhile, are two points behind the Canadiens (59 points) with five games to play. The Canadiens will play the Capitals Saturday night and will have played 45 games to Boston’s 44 by the end of the day.
Brad Marchand opened the game’s scoring with a power-play goal on a wrist shot that went off Tomas Vokoun and in, but Jussi Jokinen tied the game in the second period by backhanding a rebound past Rask.
The Bruins suffered a pair of injuries in the game, as Nathan Horton was lost for the game after fighting Iginla in the first period and Adam McQuaid was hurt following a second-period hit from Matt Cooke.
The Bruins will host the Panthers Sunday at 12:30 p.m.
WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS
- Horton was lost for the game after fighting Jarome Iginla in the first period. The fight was very short-lived, with the two power forwards essentially wrestling one another down, but Horton was spotted favoring his left wrist as he left the ice.
- McQuaid left the game and returned, but his situation is still one to keep an eye on. The defenseman jumped up a bit as Cooke went to deliver a clean hip-check and it left McQuaid down on the ice by the Bruins’ bench as he inched his way off. McQuaid was helped down the tunnel by teammates, but he was back on the bench shortly after and returned to the game. He didn’t look like he was 100 percent, however. McQuaid challenged Cooke in the third period and was declined.
- Both of the Penguins’ third-period goals came on the power play. They allowed the Hurricanes to go 2-for-3 on the power play last Saturday and the Sabres were 4-of-6 on the man advantage Wednesday, making Saturday’s contest the third straight game in which the B’s have allowed two power play goals.
- Carl Soderberg didn’t have the strongest showing in his NHL debut, which was to be expected given that he has played on the bigger ice surfaces in Europe for his entire professional career. Soderberg finished the game with a minus-1 rating (he was on the ice for Jokinen’s goal) and no shots on goal. Soderberg did get some power play time, though nothing came of it as he was not on the unit that yielded Marchand’s goal).
- Zdeno Chara ended up in the box again for coming to the aid of a teammate, as he was called for roughing when he went after Cooke following the hit on McQuaid. Considering Cooke’s hit was clean, an answer wasn’t necessary. Of course, one can’t blame Chara for seeing his teammate down after a hit from someone with Cooke’s reputation and thinking otherwise.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS
- With the lines in flux (Milan Lucic was a healthy scratch as Claude Julien continues to tinker with the lineup), the familiar line of Patrice Bergeron between Brad Marchand and Tyler Seguin was as once again strong. Bergeron had a superb showing at the faceoff dot, winning 18 of 26 draws, while the line landed 16 shots on net (six for Seguin and four apiece for Bergeron and Marchand).
- With Horton out, Rich Peverley took his place on Krejci’s line, as he has in the last two seasons. The trio of Krejci between Gregory Campbell and Peverley had a strong second period and generated multiple scoring opportunities on a mid-second period shift.
|Milan Lucic a healthy scratch as Carl Soderberg makes NHL debut||04.20.13 at 12:18 pm ET|
Milan Lucic was made a healthy scratch for Saturday’s game against the Penguins and did not take warmups. The scratch comes two days after Lucic skated with the Bruins’ extra forwards in Thursday’s practice.
After scoring 30 goals two seasons ago and scoring 26 last season, Lucic has just six goals in 41 games this season. He has two goals over his last 27 games.
Prior to the lockout, the 24-year-old Lucic signed a three-year contract worth $18 million that will make him the Bruins’ highest-paid forward beginning next season.
With Lucic out, Carl Soderberg was in the lineup for his NHL debut. Dougie Hamilton was also absent from warmups, making he, Aaron Johnson and Wade Redden the healthy scratches on defense. The lines and pairings appeared as follows in warmups:
Daniel Paille – David Krejci – Nathan Horton
Brad Marchand – Patrice Bergeron – Tyler Seguin
Carl Soderberg – Chris Kelly – Jaromir Jagr
Gregory Campbell – Rich Peverley – Shawn Thornton
Zdeno Chara – Dennis Seidenberg
Andrew Ference – Johnny Boychuk
Matt Bartkowski – Adam McQuaid
The Bruins took the ice for warmups wearing hats for the police departments of Massachusetts, Watertown and Boston.
For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.
|Claude Julien: Emotional week for Boston will ‘always leave a scar’||04.20.13 at 11:50 am ET|
Prior to Saturday’s game against the Penguins, Bruins coach Claude Julien expressed what his emotions were Friday as the city was in lockdown leading up to the arrest of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
Julien, who said he was “glued to the TV all day” on Friday, said he’s relieved that the suspects have been caught (Tsarnaev’s older brother was killed Thursday night) and that the B’s now have the responsibility of helping Boston get back to where it was before Monday’s attack.
“When those things happen in your city, it’s a normal thing to be a little bit concerned, and like everybody else, extremely happy when they finally got the second suspect,” Julien said. “At least we can all breathe a little easier and sleep a little easier. Now it’s hopefully time to work ourselves into trying to get things back to normal again. It will always leave a scar somewhere. There’s some damage done, but now we have to do a job to do today. That, unfortunately, is what our responsibility is.”
Bruins and Penguins players, as well as Penguins coach Dan Bylsma (as spotted by ESPN’s Joe McDonald) wore “Boston Strong” Bruins shirts prior to Saturday’s game. The shirts can be purchased here for $26, with 100 percent of proceeds going to the One Fund Boston to benefit the families of the victims.
It was a gesture like that on the Penguins’ part, much like Sabres forward Thomas Vanek‘s idea to salute the Boston following Wednesday’s game, that shows that the emotions of this week are felt beyond Boston. Julien said he expects the Penguins to be just as emotional as the Bruins Saturday, so both teams will need to bear down in a matchup of two of the Eastern Conference’s top teams.
“There’s no way of going out there and using excuses,” Julien said. “If it bothers us, it’s going to bother the other team. It happened in our city, but it’s affected everybody around the world. We’re glad they caught the suspects and now it’s time to let them do their work and time for us to do ours.”
For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.
|Friday’s Bruins-Penguins game postponed||04.19.13 at 3:15 pm ET|
Friday night’s game between the Bruins and Penguins has been postponed due to the search for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev, the Boston Police announced Friday afternoon. The game, scheduled to be played at TD Garden at 7 p.m., is tentatively rescheduled for Saturday at 12:30 p.m. The league will confirm the game’s status no later than 8:30 a.m.
Because of the rescheduling for Saturday, the Penguins and Sabres will play their game originally scheduled for Saturday night Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. in Pittsburgh.
Friday’s game marks the second Bruins contest to be postponed this week, as Monday’s game against the Senators at TD Garden was rescheduled for April 28.
For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.
|Bruins, Penguins cancel morning skate, playoff ticket sales postponed||04.19.13 at 10:42 am ET|
Both the Bruins and Penguins cancelled their morning skates for Friday due to the search for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev. The B’s were set to take the ice at TD Garden, with the Penguins scheduled to go on at 11:30. As of noon, Friday’s game is still scheduled to be played.
Furthermore, the Bruins have postponed the on-sale time for playoff tickets from Friday at 11 a.m. to Monday at 11 a.m.
For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.
|Jarome Iginla coming to Boston after spurning Bruins||04.18.13 at 5:42 pm ET|
It isn’t the way that people may have expected at around 10:30 p.m. on March 27, but Jarome Iginla is coming to Boston.
Just over three weeks after squashing a trade to the Bruins, Iginla will take the Garden ice Friday with the Penguins, the team he told Flames general manager Jay Feaster to deal him to after Feaster had told the Bruins they had the player.
The story is ancient history by now: Iginla, in the final year of his deal, told the Flames he would waive his no-trade clause for the Bruins, Penguins, Kings or Blackhawks. The Bruins submitted an offer of Alexander Khokhlachev, Matt Bartkowski and their first-round pick this year, and Feaster told Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli around noon of the 27th that the deal was done. Both sides scratched their players that night, but Iginla told Feaster he’d only go to the Penguins. Feaster avoided Chiarelli’s calls throughout the day, finally calling him back to say that Iginla wanted to be a Penguin and that the Flames were forced to make a deal with them.
So how do you think he’ll be accepted Friday?
“I’m sure the fans are going to be all over him,” Milan Lucic said Thursday. “I think it will just increase this rivalry that is kind of increasing as this season’s gone on.”
Yet as fired up as the fans may be to give Iginla a hard time, the Bruins say there are no hard feelings. There should be obvious motivation to prove Iginla’s decision wrong, but the B’s insist they weren’t offended by the veteran power forward’s refusal to play in Boston.
“We’ve put that behind us,” Brad Marchand said. “We can’t let that affect us. We can’t let that determine how we’re going to play tomorrow. He felt that they have a good team, and they do. They’ve got some great players over there. That’s fine. That’s his decision. We can’t hold that against him. He’s got a certain level of respect that he’s owed. He’s played a long time in this league, and for him to make that decision, that’s fine. We’re not going to judge him for that. It’s not going to alter or determine how we play tomorrow.”
Marchand said the whole ordeal was made easier by the acquisition of Jaromir Jagr, a former Penguin himself who adds his own twist to the rivalry. Jagr has seven points (one goal, six assists) in seven games for the Bruins, while Iginla has two goals and four assists for six points through eight games for Pittsburgh.
“The team did a great job at bouncing back and getting another great player. He’s one of the best players to ever play the game,” Marchand said. “… We’re lucky to have Jags here.”
Not only did Jagr not think the Stars would trade him, but he too thought that Iginla was a Bruin when reports of the deal began surfacing. He played 11 seasons as a Penguin and ruffled feathers when he opted to sign with the rival Flyers rather than going to where he began his career when he returned to the NHL prior to last season. Between being the consolation prize in the Iginla derby and his history with Pittsburgh, there should be plenty of reasons for him get up for Friday’s game. He has another in mind.
“They’re first in our conference,” Jagr said. “Maybe we’re going to meet them in the playoffs, so we have to do our best to show them that we can play against them.”
|Bruins humbled by experience with first responders||04.18.13 at 3:05 pm ET|
WILMINGTON — When the Bruins hosted 80 first-responders at Wednesday’s game, they thought they were simply providing a nice gesture as a way of thanking the brave bunch for all they had done for the city during Monday’s horrific events. They didn’t think they were making anybody’s day, but they were.
In meeting with the first-responders following their 3-2 shootout loss to the Sabres Wednesday, the Bruins were overwhelmed by their experience with the heroes and how proud they were to meet the B’s.
“They were very, very happy and excited that they came to the game and they really showed a lot of respect,” Brad Marchand said Thursday. “It was funny — not funny, but a different feeling because they were thanking us when really we wanted to thank them for everything that they did for our city and for us and for everyone who was involved. It was honor meeting them and being able to meet those guys and hear their stories of how courageous they were in a moment like that.”
Marchand said it was more of an honor for the Bruins to spend time with the heroes than the other way around, but to be able to give them something to be smile about was touching for the players.
“They really expressed last night how big it was for them to come to the game and how excited they were from the moment they heard they were coming,” Marchand said. “Some of the guys were telling us how they found out and just how excited they were all day long or the day before, and it was all they could think about. They said that’s what they needed to kind of get their mind off things. They saw a lot of stuff. To be able to give that to them for them to enjoy and look forward to watching us play and just a few hours to watch us play and enjoy something, it’s huge for us. We take a lot of pride in that. Obviously, those guys are heroes and we look up to them. They did some courageous and amazing things. We owe them a lot.”
After the game, Andrew Ference and some other players took the first-responders out for beers as a way of further thanking them for everything they had done. Though Dennis Seidenberg didn’t join them (his children had to get up early), he wasn’t surprised to see how much the night meant to both sides.
“It’s a great sports town, Boston is,” Dennis Seidenberg said. “People are very emotional about their sports. When you have a chance to give them the opportunity to come to a game and get their mind off what happened, it’s easy for us to do and something nice also.”
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