|David Krejci stuck with wrong sticks||02.05.11 at 4:38 pm ET|
David Krejci knows that after the B’s were shut out Saturday, it’s in his hands to keep the top line producing. Right now, he just doesn’t like what’s in his hands.
Krejci, who has a contract with Bauer, has been in a bit of an unusual spot over the last couple of games. An issue with manufacturing the stick he uses each night has left him using a stick he’s had trouble getting a feel for.
“This stick sucks, and that’s all I’ve got,” Krejci, in his usual calm demeanor, said after Saturday’s game. “You can put it up on TV or in the papers. I don’t care. This stick sucks.”
The irony in the situation, of course, is that Krejci is a happy user of Bauer and loves the stick that he usually plays with. The problem is that the factory that manufactures his stick, for whatever reason, will not be able to produce his model of choice again until Feb. 11, and as a result, he’s left with the type he used to use earlier in his career.
“We ordered the sticks, my guy said they were coming [when] he ordered them,” the center said. “The trainers called them again because they didn’t come in the mail and they said, ‘Oh yeah, we’ve closed the factory and we’re going to open it up again. We’re not making any sticks until Feb. 11,’ so they sent me the sticks that I used to use a long time ago.”
Krejci fell out of love with the stick when he used them earlier in his career, but it seems he’ll have to get used to them over the next few games.
“That was the reason why I changed from those sticks to the new ones I’m using, because I don’t like these ones,” he said. “I changed them because I didn’t like them anymore, but [now] it’s the only thing I can have.”
Krejci hasn’t scored in 19 games, though he has five assists over his last six games. The center, who is accountable when it comes to his game, stressed that he wasn’t talking about his own performance or suggesting that his unhappiness with the stick has hurt his play.
“I’m not making excuses for my game,” Krejci said. “I just don’t like that stick. That’s all it is.”
|Antti Niemi, Sharks blank Bruins, 2-0||02.05.11 at 3:21 pm ET|
One goal proved to be all the Sharks needed to defeat the Bruins Saturday, as a Logan Couture power play strike in the first period provided enough in a 2-0 San Jose victory. Devin Setoguchi had an empty netter in the final seconds.
Antti Niemi made 26 saves for the Sharks in handing the Bruins their fifth shutout this season.
Zach Hamill, making his season debut, logged 9:34 of ice time and had zero shots on goal. Zdeno Chara led the B’s in shots on goal, putting four pucks on Niemi.
The Bruins will return to action on Wednesday when they host the Canadiens at TD Garden.
WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS
- Following Saturday's 0-for-4 performance on the man advantage, the Bruins have now gone five games without a power-play goal. They're 0-for-12 during that stretch and just one for their last 19.
The B's had a couple chances on their two power plays in the first, including a Milan Lucic rebound bid that went wide and a Steven Kampfer one-timer that Niemi got his blocker on, but they failed to sustain any sort of consistent pressure. They barely even got set up on their one man-up chance in the second. Boston's biggest chance on the power play came midway through the third when Joe Thornton went off for a trip, but the B's once again struggled to get organized and mustered just one shot on goal.
- The biggest thing the B’s proved in beating the Stars on Thursday was that they could beat a Western Conference team at home. With Saturday’s loss, they saw their already bad record in such games fall to 1-3-2 on the season.
- Just as the Bruins have struggled against Western teams at home, they have also been sub-par when hosting matinees at the Garden. Saturday’s loss makes them 1-3-0 on the season in day games in Boston.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS
- The Bruins allowed just five shots in the first period and six in the second. For the game, they allowed a season-low 18. That’s pretty impressive when considering that the Sharks entered Saturday leading the league with 34.1 shots on goal per game.
The B’s previous low in shots allowed was 20, back on Oct. 28 against the Maple Leafs.
- Adam McQuaid drew penalties for the Bruins. The 24-year-old blueliner first drew a roughing minor on Ben Eager before the two fought in the first period. He later drew a timely trip on Joe Thornton as he brought the puck into the offensive zone at 10:10 of the third.
Scott McLaughlin and Mike Petraglia contributed to this report.
|Bruins trail Sharks after two||02.05.11 at 2:33 pm ET|
The Bruins will have to make another third-period comeback if they want their fourth straight win, as they trail 1-0 after two periods.
The lone goal of the period was disallowed, as there was incidental contact with the goaltender on what appeared to be the Sharks’ second goal of the game. The Bruins had their opportunities, with Michael Ryder and Dennis Seidenberg missing on attempts to knot the game at one.
The Sharks and Bruins each took a minor penalty in the period, with the Sharks drawing a bench minor for unsportsmanlike conduct at at 10:03. It was a real break for the Bruins, given that they were at a disadvantage in their own zone with Nathan Horton’s stick broken. Gregory Campbell went off for tripping Jason Demers behind Antti Niemi’s net at 12:53.
The Sharks had only six shots on Tim Thomas in the period, and the B’s head to the third with an 18-11 edge in shots on goal.
|Logan Couture has Sharks leading Bruins, 1-0||02.05.11 at 1:42 pm ET|
Though veteran Joe Thornton is the headline grabber when the Sharks are in town, it is a rookie who has the Sharks leading the Bruins, 1-0, after one.
The Bruins took a too many men on the ice penalty at 5:37. The penalty was solid in the early going, with Patrice Bergeron and Mark Recchi getting shorthanded opportunities for the B’s. Logan Couture ended up making the only noise that counted, sending a back-hander past Tim Thomas with 15 seconds remaining on the power play. The rookie now has 23 goals on the season.
Adam McQuaid fought Ben Eager at 17:53, with Eager getting the better of McQuaid in the bought. The B’s ended up on the power play as a Eager was also assessed a roughing minor. The Bruins were 0-for-2 on the power play.
After a period, the Bruins are outshooting the Sharks, 8-5.
|Tim Thomas to start for Bruins vs. Sharks||02.05.11 at 12:31 pm ET|
Thomas, in the midst of a career year, leads the league in both goals against average (1.82) and save percentage (.945) and is tied for the NHL lead in shutouts (7) and wins (25). In his last start, he made 24 saves in a 3-2 victory over the Hurricanes Monday in Carolina. Niemi is 14-3-3 this season with a 2.75 GAA and .911 save percentage.
Bruins forward Daniel Paille will serve the first game of his four-game suspension Saturday and will be eligible to return Feb. 15 against the Maple Leafs.
|Peter Chiarelli: Trade options slim due to tight competition in West||02.04.11 at 7:50 pm ET|
Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli took some time to discuss Daniel Paille‘s four-game suspension with the media on Friday, saying that he felt the length of the ban was “stiff” but that he likes the parameters the league uses to determine such suspensions. Perhaps more notably, Chiarelli touched on how he might like to improve the club.
Chiarelli, who had recently said that in a perfect world, he would like to add “a defenseman that could log some minutes,” hinted at the same thing Friday, saying that he wanted a blueliner who could “ease some of the minutes off of our players.”
The GM noted that such an acquisition could be tough to make given how close the teams in the Western Conference are right now. Prior to Friday night’s game, only three points separate the 11th-place Flames and the fourth-place Predators.
'Right now, everything is very, very tight,' Chiarelli said. 'You hear that from me every year a month before the deadline, and it's even more true now. The standings are tight. Usually your trading partners are in the West. It's very, very tight.'
As for whether he could make a trade to replace Marc Savard‘s contributions should the center be shut down for the season, Chiarelli feels that “that player is not available” via trade. Placing Savard on long-term injury reserve would allow the team more spending money with the center’s cap hit not a factor.
|Julien: Raymond Sawada needed to position himself properly||02.04.11 at 2:21 pm ET|
WILMINGTON — Bruins coach Claude Julien said Friday that he completely supports Rule 48, which outlaws blindside hits to the head in the NHL, but in the case of Thursday night’s Daniel Paille hit on Raymond Sawada, felt that the play should also be a lesson to players skating with their heads down.
Sawada broke his nose and sustained a shoulder injury on the play. Julien noted that regardless of the fact that Sawada was playing in just his first game this season (11th of his career), there is no excuse for positioning one’s self for such an event to occur.
“Once you’re in the pros, you’ve been told for many, many years never to play with your head down,” Julien said. “So if he hasn’t learned by now, he shouldn’t be in the pros.”
Paille was suspended for four games after a hearing with NHL Senior Vice President of Hockey Operations Mike Murphy on Friday morning. Head disciplinarian Colin Campbell is unable to have a say in the matter given that his son is Paille’s linemate Gregory Campbell.
Julien said that Shawn Thornton, who left Friday’s practice, will be good to go Saturday against the Sharks. The coach noted that it was his call to send Thornton off the ice, with the winger feeling less than 100 percent. Thornton scored his eighth goal of the season Thursday night.
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