|Chad Johnson ready for more work||11.13.13 at 1:33 pm ET|
WILMINGTON — If Tuukka Rask has played more than any Bruins goaltender under Claude Julien through the first 17 games of a season, that would mean that backup Chad Johnson has played the least of any Bruins goaltender under Claude Julien through the first 17 games of a season.
With just two games under his belt, Johnson is both happy to help the team however he can and eager to get back between the pipes. After all, Johnson says, “you’re only as good as your last game.” That’s not so great when your last game was the Bruins’ worst of the season, a 3-1 mess against the Islanders on Nov. 2.
“It’s tough in this sort of situation,” Johnson said. “You play a game and you might not get another one for a week or two weeks. You’re only as good as your last game. For me, sometimes it’s two weeks. It’s sort of tough to deal with sometimes, but you just be mentally strong and worry about having good practice and be ready for an opportunity when it does come up again.”
The reason it’s been all Tuukka all the time around these parts is largely because of the Bruins’ schedule early on, with lots of days off between games and only two back-to-backs to this point.
“It’s tough only playing in two games in two months, but that’s the situation, right?” Johnson said. “The more you play, the more comfortable you’ll get. It’s kind of like anything you do. The more you play, the more confident you’ll be, the more comfortable you’ll be. For myself, now that the first month’s over, getting in more games will help a lot more to get in more of a rhythm and feel more comfortable.”
Indeed, the opportunities should increase in the near future. The Bruins’ next four games are parts of back-to-backs, as they play Thursday and Friday and then Monday and Tuesday.
“I think it was pretty obvious with the slow start that it allowed us time to get [Rask] going again and get some rest, but the schedule will get heavier and we’re going to have to lean on Chad more and more,” Julien said. “We know that he’s in situation where he hasn’t played much and we need to allow him to find his groove a little bit if we expect to get some positive performances from him.”
|Adam McQuaid misses Wednesday’s practice, still day-to-day||11.13.13 at 10:39 am ET|
WILMINGTON — Defenseman Adam McQuaid was the only player missing from Wednesday’s Bruins practice at Ristuccia Arena, suggesting he’s likely to remain out with a lower-body injury.
McQuaid left after his second shift of Saturday’s win over the Maple Leafs and did not play Monday against the Lightning. He grabbed his groin area at the end of his last shift Saturday, with Claude Julien saying McQuaid’s injury is to “where he grabbed.” The coach added that he wasn’t sure if McQuaid’s injury was a “day-to-day” situation or a “week-plus.” He gave something of an update following Wednesday’s practice.
“Still day-to-day,” Julien said. “He’s not skating now because he’s not capable of it. We keep hoping that he keeps improving, and we’ll see where he stands by then.”
Matt Bartkowski played Monday in McQuaid’s place and is expected to be in again Thursday against the Blue Jackets. Julien said the team has “no idea” whether McQuaid will travel to Ottawa for Friday’s game.
For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.
|Bruins know Steven Stamkos injury isn’t good for anyone||11.11.13 at 5:32 pm ET|
It should come as no surprise that when Steven Stamkos flew into the net and pounded his fist in both clear pain and disappointment in the second period of Monday’s Bruins-Lightning game, the TD Garden crowd fell silent. When he was placed onto a stretcher and wheeled off the ice, the sold-out crowd gave him a standing ovation.
Boston fans aren’t always the most gracious, but the unanimous show of support for the Lightning star said that they both respect him — remember, this is the same ice on which Stamkos took a Johnny Boychuk slapshot to the face, got some stitches, slapped a cage on his helmet and went back out there in Game 7 of the 2011 Eastern Conference finals — and don’t want to see the league lose one of its best young players.
The Bruins agreed, and though the top team in the conference losing the league’s leader in goals and points might bode well for the Bruins, it isn’t lost on them that a Stamkos-less NHL isn’t as good an NHL.
“I don't care whether he's on another team or not, a player like that is what people pay to come and watch,” Claude Julien said. “'¦ This game is built on guys like that that have tremendous skills, that are good leaders and everything else. It's unfortunate that those kind of injuries happen to those players. You hope that his injury isn't too serious and if anything he's going to come back quick.”
Unfortunately, the injury is serious and he isn’t going to come back quick. It’s a broken right tibia for Stamkos and he’s out indefinitely. He suffered the injury crashing into the net while battling for position with Dougie Hamilton, with his left leg hitting the post first and then the bottom of his right leg following in a scene of which you probably won’t want to catch too many replays.
Gregory Campbell knows a thing or two about tough injuries like this, as he had one of the most famous broken legs in sports history when he broke his blocking an Evgeni Malkin slapshot in Game 3 of last season’s Eastern Conference finals and finished his shift.
“I don't like to see that happen to anybody,” Campbell said. “I have a lot of respect for him, but whether it's him or somebody else, injuries are tough, tough to come back from.
Added Campbell: “He's becoming the face of the game now, one of the key faces of the NHL. In an Olympic year, a lot of things that are negative about it for his own personal game it's unfortunate. Injuries do happen, it's something that you have to come to expect, unfortunately. It's the beginning of a long process when you get injured, and he's an important player to his team and to the league, but he's a strong guy. I know he works hard, and I'm sure he'll be back stronger than ever.”
|Steven Stamkos injured as Bruins beat Lightning||11.11.13 at 3:36 pm ET|
The Bruins continued to make up ground in the standings Monday with a 3-0 win over the Lightning, but the matinee was overshadowed by a rather dark moment for one of the league’s top players.
The story of the game didn’t end up being scoring or standings placement, as an injury to Steven Stamkos left the superstar center down on the ice banging his fists in visible pain before being carried off on a stretcher.
Stamkos suffered the injury when he and Dougie Hamilton crashed into the net, with Stamkos’ right leg hitting the post. Stamkos’ right foot appeared to be dangling after the play, and when trainers came out to the ice, Stamkos could be seen mouthing, “It’s broken.”
Stamkos, 23, entered the game leading the NHL in both goals (14) and points (23).
The Garden crowd gave Stamkos a standing ovation and seemed to be taken out of the game until the B’s got on the board on Patrice Bergeron‘s sixth goal of the season. Bruins fans certainly have a lot of respect for Stamkos after seeing him stay in the game after getting hit in the face with a Johnny Boychuk slap shot in Game 7 of the 2011 Eastern Conference finals.
Just 20 seconds after Bergeron’s goal, Daniel Paille took the puck through the neutral zone and to the net before deking Lightning goalie Anders Lindback and putting in his second goal of the season.
With a clear shot at the empty net in the natural zone, Milan Lucic dished the puck to Jarome Iginla, who scored his fourth of the season.
Tuukka Rask picked up the shutout for the Bruins, the second one he’s had against the Lightning this season. He stopped all 28 shots he saw.
The Bruins will wrap up their five-game home stand Thursday when they host the Blue Jackets.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS Read the rest of this entry »
|Bruins not sure if Adam McQuaid’s injury is ‘day-to-day or a week-plus’||11.11.13 at 12:13 pm ET|
Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid was confirmed out for Monday’s matinee against the Lightning with a lower-body injury, and the Bruins aren’t sure when he’ll be able to return.
“They haven’t told us whether it’s day-to-day or a week-plus,” Claude Julien said. “I don’t have the answer for you there.”
McQuaid appeared to grab his groin area during his second shift of the game Saturday against the Maple Leafs. He was slow to get off the ice and did not return. Asked to confirm that it was a lower-body injury, Julien said that it was the area McQuaid grabbed as he went down.
“I think everybody knows where he got hurt,” Julien said. “I think he grabbed it quick enough that it was pretty obvious.”
With McQuaid out, Matt Bartkowski will play Monday. He was paired with Johnny Boychuk in Sunday’s practice.
For more Bruins coverage, visit weei.com/bruins.
|Video: Malcolm Subban gets in goalie fight||11.10.13 at 6:32 pm ET|
Here’s a fan video of Providence Bruins goalie Malcolm Subban‘s first professional fight. Subban dropped the gloves against Scott Stajcer in a 6-0 win over Hartford on Sunday.
|Bruins review: Carl Soderberg coming alive, Malcolm Subban fights||11.10.13 at 5:38 pm ET|
Reviewing the week that was in Bruins land.
This week packed a punch. From Tyler Seguin and Rich Peverley to Tim Thomas (kind of) and then Phil Kessel, it was reunion week at TD Garden. The Bruins won two of the three games and now stand at 10-5-1 with 21 points on the season. They trail the Lightning (24 points in 16 games) and will take them on Monday.
Seguin came back to Boston. We spoke at length with Peter Chiarelli about Seguin’s time here and the trade
Loui Eriksson returned to the lineup, as did Johnny Boychuk
Peverley came back too, and he beat the Bruins in a shootout
People booed the bejesus out of Seguin. Why?
Claude Julien corrected record about Tim Thomas winning the Bruins a Stanley Cup
Brad Marchand finally scored as the Bruins beat the Panthers, who fired everyone after because the Panthers stink
Tuukka Rask admitted that the consequences of him not being at his best are greater with the B’s a work in progress defensively
The third line the Bruins had planned on having in the preseason finally got together and did well
Panthers forward Jesse Winchester left his feet to elbow Chris Kelly in the head and was suspended three games for it
Scott McLaughlin gave his argument against fighting in the NHL and noted hits like Winchester’s need to be a priority
The Bruins beat the Maple Leafs, but with far less drama than last time
Adam McQuaid was hurt in the win and is unlikely to play Monday
As such, the Bruins will likely have three mobile defensemen in their lineup against the Lightning
IT WAS A GOOD WEEK FOR'¦
Carl Soderberg: The 28-year-old his playing the best hockey of his brief NHL career. It’s been a combination of him being more comfortable in the league and his ankle not bothering him as much as it did when he first returned. He has points in two of his last three games.
Jarome Iginla: The 36-year-old was a beast Saturday against the Maple Leafs and has been — to this point, at least — a regular-season upgrade over Nathan Horton.
Milan Lucic: The former 30-goal-scorer-turned-seven-goal-scorer tied his goal output of the lockout-shortened season when he notched his seventh goal of the season Tuesday against the Stars. It took him 46 games to get to that number last season.
Torey Krug: The undersized and over-talented blueliner still has his uh-oh moments defensively, and he’s going to have them. He’s also going to have weeks like this one, where he had goals in consecutive games.
IT WAS A BAD WEEK FOR'¦
Brad Marchand: He isn’t out of the woods yet. Despite finally scoring his second goal of the season Thursday, he had a bad turnover in a following shift. He was also passive along the wall Saturday in allowing the Leafs to create a 2-on-1. Things are looking up, but it isn’t smooth sailing just yet.
Zdeno Chara (kind of): Only for Thursday. A bad line change with the Bruins holding a one-goal lead against the Stars against the Stars resulted in a Vernon Fiddler breakaway. Dennis Seidenberg had to hook him, resulting in a penalty shot on which Fiddler tied the game. The B’s lost in a shootout.
Gregory Campbell: The Merlot Line center has just one shot on goal over the last six games. His trio was also stuck in the Bruins’ zone for a while in the second period.
Claude Julien: He did fine as a coach, but he got Tyler Seguin and Tim Thomas questions all week. He seemed to get sick of them in a hurry.
MEANWHILE, IN PROVIDENCE'¦
Matt Fraser had four goals Friday in an 8-5 win over Hartford that also featured a hat trick from Craig Cunningham. I wasn’t there and didn’t see it, but considering the lack of suspension, Fraser celebrated his goal differently than Joe Thornton would have.
Alexander Khokhlachev also scored in the game, giving him two goals in a three-game span after going without a goal in his first eight games of the season. With an assist Saturday and a goal Sunday, Khokhlachev seems to have found his rhythm after a quiet start.
Saturday’s 5-2 win over Worcester featured a pair of goals from Carter Camper, and last but not least, Malcolm Subban got in a fight in Sunday’s 6-0 Providence win over Hartford. Subban dropped the gloves against Hartford netminder Scott Stajcer for his first professional fight. His brother, P.K. Subban, has 11 career fights and a 12 in the preseason.
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