Big Bad Blog
WEEI.com Blog Network
Dougie Hamilton: ‘I’m ready to play now’ 01.24.14 at 1:33 pm ET
By   |  2 Comments
Dougie Hamilton

Dougie Hamilton

WILMINGTON — Both Chris Kelly and Dougie Hamilton will travel to Philadelphia for Saturday’s game against the Flyers, with Hamilton saying he is ready to return to the lineup.

Hamilton, who has missed the last four games with a concussion, practiced with his teammates for the second consecutive day Friday and said he was “finally” cleared for contact.

“I think I’ve been skating now for, I think this is my sixth day, so every day I’ve felt better and I’m ready to play now,” Hamilton said.

Hamilton said he suffered the concussion, which was the first of his career, in the third period of the team’s loss to the Kings on Jan. 9 and played the next game against the Sharks.

The concussion is Hamilton’s second injury this season, as he missed 10 games from Dec. 10 to Jan. 2 with a knee injury. Hamilton is in his second season and said that the last couple of months have been frustrating given that they’ve halted the progress of a strong second season.

“I think I’m a lot more comfortable and a lot better defensively, and just feel a lot better on the ice,” Hamilton said. “It’s just been an unfortunate month or two months or whatever. Hopefully I can just get back into the lineup again and have fun and help the team out.”

Kelly also practiced with the team for the second straight day. He has not played since suffering a broken fibula on Dec. 7 against the Penguins. Claude Julien said that there is a chance one or both could return to the lineup Saturday, and noted that Hamilton is closer to returning than Kelly because he has missed less time and is in better game shape.

Adam McQuaid did not practice Friday and will not travel to Philadelphia as he remains out with a leg injury.

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

Read More: Adam McQuaid, Chris Kelly, Dougie Hamilton,
Bruins playing it safe with families given threat of danger at Olympics 01.23.14 at 11:41 pm ET
By   |  4 Comments

With suicide bombings striking Russia and the threat of more — three potential suicide bombers are rumored to be on the loose — leading up to the Olympics, Bruins representatives are unsure of whether they want their families there.

Bruins captain Zdeno Chara, who will be Slovakia’s captain and flag bearer, has plans for his father, a former Olympic wrestler and coach, to go. However, he told WEEI.com Thursday that his family is still taking things (one of which is safety) into consideration.

“Not sure,” Chara said. “We’re planning. Everything is set up for him to come, but we have to still wait for a few things [and see] how it goes.”

David Krejci, who will represent the Czech Republic, does not want his mother to go, though she intends to see her son play.

‘€œI told my family not to go, but my mom wants to go so I can’€™t stop her,” Krejci said. “I would prefer if she didn’€™t go. I understand everybody who doesn’€™t want their families to go. It’€™s a scary situation. I’€™m sure the Russian president is going to take care of everything and he’€™ll make the Olympic Games safe, but we’€™ll see what happens.”

Added Krejci: ‘€œI’€™ve been reading papers and watching TV, so I know there’€™s been a lot of talk about it. I know [the United States] have sent lots of military people over there, so it’€™s going to be interesting. You kind of don’€™t know what you’€™re getting into but I’€™m sure they’€™re going to do everything they can to make it safe.’€

Claude Julien, who is on Canada’s coaching staff, faces a similar situation with his wife, who wants to go, while Julien would rather his family be safe.

“That’s still a debate right now. Not my family. If anything, it will be my wife, but that’s still under debate right now,” Julien said. “There is concern, like anybody else, but there’s concern like that everywhere else. I think it’s been exposed more because of what it represents, but it’s a decision we’ll make later.”

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

Read More: Claude Julien, David Krejci, Zdeno Chara,
Kevan Miller won’t get complacent with new contract 01.23.14 at 1:36 pm ET
By   |  No Comments
Kevan Miller

Kevan Miller

WILMINGTON — The Bruins showed during Kevan Miller‘s first call-up that they had faith in him when they played him in the final minute of a one-goal game against the Penguins.

They showed it again this week when they gave him a two-year, one-way contract extension worth $1.6 million.

“I mean, it’s obviously a good feeling,” Miller said Thursday of the deal he signed Tuesday. “You never want to get too comfortable; you always want to kind of be on your toes, but it’s a confidence-booster.”

Miller, 26, has played 16 games for the Bruins this season. The Los Angeles native and undrafted University of Vermont product has a goal and an assist for two points, an even rating and an average of 16:53 played per game. He’s been needed given the injuries the Bruins have had on their blue line to Adam McQuaid, Dougie Hamilton and Johnny Boychuk, and he’s used the time to show he’s capable of being an NHL player.

“He’s earned it,” Claude Julien said. “It’s pretty obvious he’s come in here and played some pretty solid hockey and he’s been rewarded for it. There’s no doubt, for a player, it certainly gives you that confidence and that security that you’re always looking for. But he’s still on a two-way this year, so he’s got to be careful.”

Miller was set to be a restricted free agent at season’s end. Last season, the Bruins re-upped then free agent-to-be Matt Bartkowski with a one-year deal, and though they tried to trade him afterward, Bartkowski said that it’s helpful for a player to know what’s ahead of them early in their NHL career.

“It’s pretty comforting in a sense that you kind of know where you’re going to be the next year,” Bartkowski said. “My situation was a little different, but it certainly gives you confidence, which brings a comfort level, I guess.”

The fact that Miller has two seasons ahead of him for low dollars would seemingly make him a more valuable commodity should any teams be interested in his services when talking trade with the Bruins. Bartkowski, who frequently pokes fun at teammates, said he hasn’t teased Miller with the idea that the team could try to trade Miller like they did with him.

Considering they’ve been defensive partners at both the AHL and NHL level for years now, Bartkowski certainly wouldn’t want that to happen, either.

“No, I don’t think they’re doing that,” Bartkowski said with a laugh. “I actually hadn’t even thought of that, so maybe I’ll bring that up next.”

Read More: Claude Julien, Kevan Miller, Matt Bartkowski,
Bruins unsure of Adam McQuaid’s timetable 01.23.14 at 1:03 pm ET
By   |  4 Comments

WILMINGTON — Adam McQuaid was not on the ice for Thursday’s practice as he remains out with a leg injury. After the practice, Claude Julien said the team doesn’t have a good idea of when he will return.

“His injury is an injury that’s really hard to assess,” Julien said. “That’s why I’m giving you guys that day-to-day thing, because nobody, even the medical staff has not been able to give us or pinpoint a time. So it’s day-to-day. It depends on how he heals. It could be shorter, it could be longer. We’ve just got to go about it on a day-to-day situation.”

McQuaid missed the second half of Sunday’s game in Chicago and all of Monday’s game against the Kings. He has missed 19 games this season due to injury.

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

Read More: Adam McQuaid,
Chris Kelly, Dougie Hamilton practice with Bruins; Adam McQuaid absent 01.23.14 at 11:22 am ET
By   |  No Comments

WILMINGTON — Both Chris Kelly and Dougie Hamilton returned to practice Thursday at Ristuccia Arena. Adam McQuaid, who is out with a leg injury, was the only player missing from practice.

Kelly has been out since Dec. 7 with a broken fibula, while Hamilton has missed the last four games with a concussion. Kelly was wearing a grey (third line) jersey along with Carl Soderberg, Loui Eriksson and Ryan Spooner. With Kelly out of the lineup, Spooner has centered the third line.

“I was excited to come today,” Kelly said after the practice. “It’s been a little bit longer than I would have liked, but it’s all part of the process of getting better, and today was a good step in the right direction.”

Kelly said he isn’t sure when he will return to the lineup, but Claude Julien said that he will travel to Philadelphia for Saturday’s game and could be in the lineup within a week. The veteran center added that he “pushed it pretty good” in Thursday’s practice and felt good.

“I think I’ve done everything I need to do,” Kelly said. “Conditioning, I felt great. Obviously you can never simulate the physical aspect of the game, but I felt good out there today.”

Julien said it is unclear whether Hamilton will travel, as he hasn’t been cleared to take heavy contact yet.

Also on the ice for the B’s was Zach Trotman, who was recalled Thursday morning on an emergency basis. Trotman had been returned to Providence Tuesday after playing Monday’s game against the Kings. Though the Bruins were off Tuesday and Wednesday, Trotman was able to get a practice in with Providence on Wednesday.

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

Read More: Adam McQuaid, Chris Kelly, Dougie Hamilton, Zach Trotman
Bruins recall Zach Trotman 01.23.14 at 9:31 am ET
By   |  No Comments

WILMINGTON — The Bruins have recalled defenseman Zach Trotman from Providence on an emergency basis.  The team had recalled him for Monday’s game against the Kings and then sent him back.

Trotman’s recall comes with the Bruins still banged up on the right side of their blue line. Dougie Hamilton has missed the last four games with a concussion, while Adam McQuaid left Sunday’s game in Chicago and did not play Monday due to a leg injury. If neither are ready for Saturday’s game in Philadelphia, Trotman will see NHL action for the third time this season.

This is Trotman’s third recall of the season. In two games with the Bruins this season, Trotman has an even rating and is averaging 15:00 of ice time per game.

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

Read More: Zach Trotman,
Bruins sign Kevan Miller to two-year extension 01.21.14 at 6:09 pm ET
By   |  8 Comments
Kevan Miller

Kevan Miller

The Bruins announced a two-year, one-way extension for Kevan Miller worth $1.6 million Tuesday. The 26-year-old defenseman’s deal will begin next season and run through 2015-16 with an annual cap hit of $800,000.

Miller has skated in 16 games for the Bruins, scoring one goal and contributing an assist for two points and seven penalty minutes. A right-shot defenseman, he has been in the lineup with fellow righties Dougie Hamilton and Adam McQuaid out.

The signing is a logical one for the Bruins. Should they see a future in Boston for him, he provides them with an NHL-caliber blueliner who can play on the third pairing or be the seventh defenseman. It also makes him more valuable in a potential trade, as was the case last season when the Bruins signed restricted free agent to be Matt Bartkowski prior to including him in last season’s deal-that-wasn’t with the Flames.

His presence long-term could also provide something of a redundancy with he and McQuaid, the latter of whom is in the second year of a three-year deal with an annual cap hit of $1.566 million.

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

Read More: Kevan Miller,
Bruins Box Score
Bruins Schedule
Bruins Headlines
NHL Headlines