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Red Sox COO Sam Kennedy on Mustard & Johnson: ‘We would love to have [Winter Classic] at Fenway Park’ 12.13.14 at 12:49 pm ET
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Red Sox COO Sam Kennedy joined Mustard & Johnson at Christmas at Fenway on Saturday to talk about the possibility of Fenway Park hosting the 2016 Winter Classic. To hear the interview, visit the Mustard & Johnson audio on demand page.

TSN’s Bob McKenzie reported on Thursday night that the Bruins were the favorites to land next season’s Winter Classic, but that it was unclear where the game would be held. Kennedy confirmed that the Red Sox are making a bid to get the game back at Fenway, which also hosted the 2010 Winter Classic between the Bruins and Flyers.

“I had a good conversation with Cam Neely [Friday],” Kennedy said. “I’m going to see the NHL next week. We would love to have it at Fenway Park. I don’t think we’ve made any bones about that.”

Kennedy acknowledged that Gillette Stadium is also in the running and hinted that other venues could be involved, too.

“Of course we understand that if it goes to Gillette Stadium or some other venue, that’s good for hockey, good for New England,” Kennedy said. “But I’ll be extremely disappointed [if Fenway doesn’t get it]. … And by the way, the NHL could surprise us. You’ve got Gillette Stadium and Fenway Park, but I’ve been day-dreaming about other places they might be talking to. We’re not the only game in town.”

Kenendy outlined the Red Sox’ pitch and talked about the challenge of competing against the Patriots and Gillette Stadium.

“I think the reasons that we would put forward is the fact that this is Fenway Park, in the city of Boston, unbelievable atmosphere, one of the most iconic sports venues in all of the world really,” Kennedy said. “The experiment back in 2010 was so successful. It was such a great game, great environment. I think NBC loved it. And that’€™s of course with all due respect to the Patriots and Gillette Stadium.

“Listen, let’s do the math. They’ve got 68,800 seats down there or whatever it is. It’s going to be difficult to compete with that. We’ll put our best foot forward. Tom Werner and Charlie Jacobs had a conversation yesterday, they chatted about it. Everyone knows we’d love to host the game here, but we also respect the fact that we’re not going to get every single major event that comes to the region.”

NHL handles Jonathan Toews injury scare the right way, Blackhawks don’t 12.12.14 at 5:23 pm ET
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The NHL does not want Jonathan Toews to get hurt. Neither does Dennis Seidenberg. Yet while the league was smart in reacting to Thursday night’€™s scary play, the Blackhawks themselves were not.

The Department of Player Safety chose the perhaps not-so-popular, but rational option in assessing Boston’€™s defenseman no supplemental discipline for a play that resulted in Chicago’€™s captain going face-first into the end boards at TD Garden.

The play was not a “hit,” nor was it dirty. Seidenberg was battling for position chasing a loose puck and tried to put his left arm under and in front of Toews’€™ right arm to gain leverage. He outmuscled Toews, but rather than Toews being knocked off the puck, his feet as he tried to turn away took him into the boards.

It was fast, it was scary and it’€™s the last thing either team wanted to see. It wasn’€™t dirty. If the result of the play was anything but Toews hitting the boards, the takeaway by any and every observer would be surprise at how easily Toews was knocked off the puck.

It’€™s understandable why anyone outside of Boston might be upset with the play. The league doesn’€™t want its stars getting hurt and it also doesn’€™t want to admit ‘€” as it effectively did by not punishing Seidenberg ‘€” that bad things such as head injuries are going to happen even when guys play within the rules.

Still, by not punishing Seidenberg they avoided an equally big mess of an issue, as suspending Seidenberg would have sent the message that you’€™re not allowed to be stronger than the guy you’€™re battling.

Claude Julien, who blamed the play on Toews after the game, said Friday that he was relieved that the league let Seidenberg off.

“I looked at it again. You look at those things and you look at it quick,” Julien said. “I say the same thing: I’€™m not necessarily saying that’€™s the situation, but sometimes we’€™ve got to protect ourselves as players. Dennis is a strong individual, and he went in there to close the gap quickly away from the boards.”

Asked whether he would have called the play a “hit,” Julien said he wasn’€™t sure that Seidenberg deserved a boarding penalty.

“It’€™s debatable. It’€™s debatable,” Julien said. “It depends on who you talk to and how you look at it. I looked at it again, and I’€™m saying the same thing. It’€™s debatable whether it’€™s a penalty or not. He did go in head-first and it looks like he was going the other way and Dennis did what he had to do [on the penalty kill], was get on him aggressively and try and close the gap.”

The issue actually shouldn’€™t be with Seidenberg, Toews or Julien. It should be with Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville and anyone else who decided to keep Toews on the ice.

Somehow, that’€™s where Toews was for Chicago’€™s five-on-three after the play. He took a penalty during that five-on-three and then had another three-second shift before leaving the game for good.

Quenneville said after the game that Toews “seemed all right.” Still, two more shifts before hitting the showers is absurd for a guy with a history of concussions. Players are supposed to go to the quiet room and go through the proper protocol after concussion scares, and Thursday night’€™s play was undoubtedly a concussion scare.

The play itself was unfortunate, but at the very least, the Department of Player Safety did the right thing. That’€™s more than the Blackhawks can say for themselves.

Read More: Dennis Seidenberg, Jonathan Toews,
Source: Bruins to loan David Pastrnak to Czech team for World Junior tournament 12.12.14 at 1:07 pm ET
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David Pastrnak

David Pastrnak

According to a league source, the Bruins will loan right wing David Pastrnak to the Czech Republic’€™s junior team later this month for the World Junior tournament.

Word of the development first reached America in the form of a report from Dan Cagen of the MetroWest Daily News. Czech outlet hockej.cz reported the news earlier Friday.

Pastrnak, the Bruins’€™ first-round pick (25th overall) in the 2014 draft, has played 19 games for Providence and five for Boston. He was sent back to Providence Sunday and can play four more NHL games before the first year will be burned off his three-year entry level contract.

The 18-year-old had one point (an assist) during his five-game stint in Boston’s lineup. He played mostly with Patrice Bergeron on one of Boston’s top two lines.

The tournament will be held in Toronto in Montreal, with Pastrnak leaving to join the Czech team following next Saturday’€™s Providence game.

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

Read More: David Pastrnak,
Dennis Seidenberg avoids discipline for Jonathan Toews play 12.12.14 at 12:54 pm ET
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Dennis Seidenberg did not receive a phone call from the NHL‘€™s Department of Player Safety and will not be disciplined for a play that left Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews injured Thursday night.

“It’€™s definitely good news and definitely a relief not to get suspended or fined or any of that stuff,”€ Seidenberg said after Friday’€™s practice.

Toews was chasing a puck into the corner after missing an open net during a second-period power play when, in an attempt to battle for position, Seidenberg knocked the Blackhawks star off the puck, sending him face-first into the boards.

Seidenberg, who was assessed a boarding minor for the play, maintained Friday that he was simply trying to outmuscle the player.

“€œI still believe that I went for his shoulder to the side and he kind of spun off, but then again, you look at the replays and he goes into the boards really awkwardly and dangerously,”€ Seidenberg said. “It looks dangerous, and again, I don’€™t want to hurt a guy on the ice. I play the battles and try to play them hard.”

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

Read More: Dennis Seidenberg, Jonathan Toews,
Tuukka Rask admits Bruins’ true grit ‘has been lacking’ for most of the season so far 12.12.14 at 12:45 pm ET
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For many who have watched the Bruins this season, a common criticism has been that they don’t seem fully engaged or motivated this season.

Tuukka Rask has seen the same thing. But after a 3-2 loss to the red-hot Blackhawks, Rask insisted the Bruins are headed in the right direction.

“We played a pretty good game,” Rask said, trying to find a silver lining after watching his teammates drop their sixth game in eight tries. “Tough couple bounces there, the first two goals. We fall behind 2-0 and we battled back and made it a game. When you’€™re winning games, things go your way and when you’€™re not really in the groove like we aren’€™t really, it’€™s tough to find it. We are just going to keep battling and good things are going to happen.”

Chris Kelly has been engaged and is one of the Bruins trying to provide a spark. His third period bout with Andrew Shaw came after Milan Lucic was shoved to the ice after feeding Torey Krug for a goal to make it 3-2. Rask was asked if he sees feistiness and grit returning to the team.

“I think it has been lacking for the most part this season,” Rask said. “The last game in Phoenix, we put emphasis on that, really battling for every puck and really being hard to play against. We did that and then [Thursday] we did the same thing and when two teams are doing that, emotions flare and sometimes there are fights. It’€™s a good sign that we do that.”

“It all comes from hard work and never quitting and that’€™s what we have been doing in practices and in the past couple games and as long as we keep doing that I think good things are going to happen for us and we are going to start winning hockey games and everybody can be smiling.”

All of the talk about true grit and character won’t mean much if the Bruins don’t start soon translating that into wins, especially against the best teams in the league, like Chicago.

“We have been able to play against the best for sure. [We’re] not necessarily getting all the results we wanted but at the end of the day it’€™s all about winning and we have to find a way to win these games,” Rask added.

“I mean if you look at the effort and you look at the plays we made, for the most part it was our style of hockey. I thought a lot of times we were the better team out there. So I guess you can take the positive but from a goalie standpoint, two deflections off of your own sticks and it obviously sucks. We just have to keep working and find ways to get those bounces our way, not against us.”

Read More: Boston Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, Tuukka Rask,
Report: Bruins favorites to host 2016 Winter Classic 12.12.14 at 3:33 am ET
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According to TSN, the Winter Classic is expected to come back to Boston.

Bob McKenzie reported on TSN’€™s Insider Trading that the Bruins are favorites to host the annual outdoor game in 2016. The B’€™s hosted the event in 2010 when they played the Flyers at Fenway Park.

“I would think that by mid-January to mid-February, that it could be finalized if all goes well,” McKenzie said. “That’s the primary focus right now, but the deal not done just yet.”

It is unknown where the potential game would be held.

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

Dennis Seidenberg insists, ‘I pride myself on being a clean player’ 12.12.14 at 12:45 am ET
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Dennis Seidenberg knew his hit on Jonathan Toews looked bad the moment it happened in the second period, as the Bruins were trying to kill off the final minute of consecutive penalties that put the Bruins in penalty kill mode.

But the strong, hulking defenseman made a point after the game that he meant no harm and certainly didn’t intend to put Toews out of of commission for the rest of the game. For the record, 49 seconds after getting hit by Seidenberg, Toews was actually on the ice, getting called for hooking Chris Kelly.

But after serving his hooking penalty, Toews went to the Chicago dressing room and did not return.

After the game, Seidenberg insisted he meant no harm toward Chicago’s star center.

“I pride myself on being a clean player and a hard player to play against, so when I went in on that one-on-one battle there, I thought I saw his right shoulder and at the last second he might have turned, I don’€™t know,” Seidenberg said. “I didn’t really see the replay or anything and obviously I never want to see a guy go into the boards like that.

“I would never want to hurt a guy,” he added. “That’€™s the last thing on my mind. I like playing hard and winning my board battles and that’€™s about it.”

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Read More: Boston Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, Dennis Seidenberg, Jonathan Toews
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