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Zdeno Chara scores on power play to give Bruins lead 03.22.11 at 8:35 pm ET
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The Bruins were plenty to work with in the second period, and they made good on one of the four penalties the Devils took to give them a 2-1 lead entering the third period.

After drawing a Nick Palmieri tripping penalty at 8:08, Zdeno Chara gave the B’s the lead at 8:17 off a nice pass from Milan Lucic. It was the B’s first goal on 5-on-4 play since Feb. 18. The B’s are currently 1-for-3 on the man advantage for the night.

After trailing the Devils in shots on goal by a 12-1 margin at one point in the first period, the B’s battled back in that department and are now being outshot, 24-23. Of course, being on the power play for almost half a period will help to improve those numbers.

Read More: Milan Lucic, Zdeno Chara,
Shawn Thornton ends goal-scoring drought, Bruins tied with Devils after 1 03.22.11 at 7:43 pm ET
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Who said the Ilya Kovalchuk/Shawn Thornton scoring race was over?

The once ironically compared players both came up big for their teams in the first period, and after 20 minutes, the Bruins and Devils are tied at one goal apiece.

The Devils opened the game’s scoring on the power play, as Mattias Tedenby hit a wide open Kovalchuk from behind the net and the high-priced winger beat Thomas for his

The Bruins were outshot 16-6 in the period, but they made their third one count. A Dennis Seidenberg wrister from the point was tipped past Martin Brodeur by Shawn Thornton to get the B’s on the board 15:39. It ended the longest goal-scoring drought of the season, one that began after his Feb. 3 tally and lasted 19 games.

Read More: ilya kovalchuk, Shawn Thornton,
Brad Marchand returns to Merlot Line 03.22.11 at 6:44 pm ET
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As we suspected this morning, Brad Marchand is indeed back on the Merlot Line upon his return from a two-game suspension. Michael Ryder is sticking on Patrice Bergeron’s line, while Daniel Paille, Steven Kampfer, and Shane Hnidy are the scratches. Here’s how the lines looked in warmups:

Milan LucicDavid KrejciNathan Horton

Michael Ryder – Patrice Bergeron – Mark Recchi

Rich PeverleyChris KellyTyler Seguin

Brad Marchand – Gregory Campbell – Thornton

Read More: Brad Marchand, Daniel Paille, Steven Kampfer,
Another reason the internet has been good 03.22.11 at 12:48 pm ET
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Remember back in the day when fans had to break their backs reading the standings to figure out who their team would play in the playoffs? Well, those days are long gone.

Greg Wyshynski over at Yahoo! Sports is a must-read for national stuff, and his blog now has a feature to see what playoff matchups would look like on any given day. Check it out here.

Claude Julien reiterates that Shane Hnidy will be a depth player 03.22.11 at 12:30 pm ET
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With Shane Hnidy coming off LTIR Tuesday, Bruins coach Claude Julien seemed to reiterate Sunday’s comments that he is by no means coming in and taking anyone’s job. He said after Tuesday’s practice that Hnidy can’t go down to Providence, so that he’ll remain with Boston as a depth guy who could occasionally see playing time.

“I don’€™t know what upper management has in mind here. I don’€™t think he can go to Providence at this stage of the season, after the trade deadline,” Julien. “So this is something that I don’€™t think is in the options. But he’€™s come around, and I think we’€™ll see him at some point in our lineup. We brought him here to give us some depth, and if we’€™re going to use him as a depth player, at some point from here to the end he’€™s going to see some action.”

With that being said, Julien noted that he doesn’t feel Hnidy, who hasn’t played all season due to a shoulder injury suffered in training camp with the Coyotes, is a liability.

“Just because he’€™s in our lineup doesn’€™t mean we can’€™t win our hockey game either. It’€™s just a matter of him not having played this year,” Julien said. “There’€™s going to be some small adjustments with him, but we can manage that, put him in some situations where he can get on the ice and help us more than hurt us.”

Given that all the other defensemen are healthy, the B’s have eight blueliners to choose from.

Read More: Claude Julien, Shane Hnidy,
Bruins hold optional skate 03.22.11 at 11:20 am ET
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After two days of high-energy practices, Claude Julien elected to make Tuesday’s morning skate optional. Just about everyone on the team agreed with this logic, as only Tuukka Rask and Daniel Paille took the ice.

Reading into things, this could mean that Paille might be the healthy scratch among the forwards. Brad Marchand is eligible to return vs. the Devils after a two-game suspension, while Tyler Seguin‘s recent play has made him hard to sit. The last two practices have featured both Marchand and Michael Ryder on the wing opposite Mark Recchi, so if Paille is the scratch, Marchand could be a candidate to reunite with the Merlot line.

Read More: Brad Marchand, Claude Julien, Mark Recchi, Michael Ryder
Shane Hnidy ready to come off LTIR 03.21.11 at 5:45 pm ET
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He might not play, but at least he’s eligible to do so.

Shane Hnidy will see team doctors Tuesday en route to officially coming off long-term injury reserve, meaning the veteran blueliner will be available to the Bruins for the first time since they signed him in late February. Hnidy had been rehabbing a shoulder injury suffered with the Coyotes in training camp.

“It’s the doctors’ thing,” Hnidy said. “If it was up to me, I was ready a while ago, but it’s probably best to wait. It feels really strong, and I’ve been able to battle the last few practices and have been doing it for a while. I haven’t had a negative effect at all.”

Claude Julien reiterated Sunday that Hnidy was brought in for depth purposes and that he wouldn’t be taking anyone’s job. Hnidy understands that, but he’ll welcome the playing time when it comes.

“The whole reason you want to come is to play, but I knew what the situation was coming in,” he said. “If it works out and I’m needed and have to play, I’m going to go out there and do my best. I’m anxious to get back and get in a game, but if not, I’ll just continue on this path, and try to prepare the best way I can.”

Hnidy previously played for the Bruins from 2007-09, totaling 17 points (4 G, 13 A) in 108 games.

Read More: Claude Julien, Shane Hnidy,
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