|Claude Julien tossed as Bruins lose to Hurricanes||10.18.11 at 9:44 pm ET|
The Bruins’ hardly hid their frustrations Tuesday night at TD Garden as they fell to the Hurricanes, 4-1, and saw their season record drop to 2-4-0. Among the 72 minutes worth of penalties assessed to the team on the night, the most notable might have come in the final minutes of the third period, when B’s coach Claude Julien was tossed from the game.
The Hurricanes received goals from Anthony Stewart, Joni Pitkanen, Eric Staal and Tuomo Ruutu with Rich Peverley scoring the Bruins’ lone goal. Stewart has now scored both of his goals this season again the Bruins.
On a night that featured instances of Nathan Horton taking whacks at Carolina players and the likes of Shawn Thornton being turned down in his requests to dance (Thornton practically begged Tim Gleason but was turned down), the teams finally came to blows over halfway through the second period. Horton got tangled up with Jay Harrison before Zdeno Chara came in and began pounding the Hurricanes defenseman.
Chara then had a nose-to-nose encounter with Ward, which caused Rask to skate the length of the ice to challenge the Hurricanes netminder. Ward declined, and Rask was assessed a minor penalty for crossing the red line.
Chara racked up 17 penalty minutes on the play, as he got an instigator and 10-minute misconduct in addition to his fighting major. Horton received a roughing minor, with Harrison, like Chara, getting a fighting major. After all the penalties, the Bruins were forced to kill off a 5-on-3.
Fisticuffs occurred again halfway through the third period, when Milan Lucic tried to fight Gleason before Chris Kelly eventually fought Brett Sutter, who had injured Joe Corvo earlier in the game. Minutes later, Horton threw Gleason to the ice after Gleason kept his gloves on and clearly was not interested in throwing. Horton was assessed a double-minor for roughing as well as a 10-minute game misconduct, ending his night.
WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS
– Horton’s penalty was Lucic-esque for its combination of bad timing and poor judgement. With the Bruins trailing by a goal and 8:30 remaining, Horton put the B’s down a man (further penalties would make it worse) rather than in good shape to mount a comeback.
– It was not a good night for the Bruins’ fourth line. Shawn Thornton, Gregory Campbell and Daniel Paille were on the ice for both of the Hurricanes goals. The line had two shots on goal, both of which came from Paille.
One positive for the line came in the first period, when Thornton easily picked the pocket of Tomas Kaberle on a turnover so soft that offer grounds for nostalgia about Kaberle’s similarly soft play with the Bruins last season.
– Matt Bartkowski‘s time filling in for Adam McQuaid has not gone well. He was on the ice for Sutter’s tally, and after has now been a minus-2 over the last two games despite getting minimal ice time. He did not play at all in the second period, but saw some time in the third period. The Bruins would be fortunate to get McQuaid or Steven Kampfer back as quickly as possible.
– Julien made a statement in the third period by taking Lucic off the first line and promoting Benoit Pouliot. Lucic took Pouliot’s old spot on the third line. Lucic led the Bruins with 30 goals last season but has just one point (an assist) through six games.
– Dennis Seidenberg took a couple of bad penalties at the wrong time as well. Textbook cases of interference in the second period and a boarding call with 7:50 remaining, much like Horton’s actions, made things drastically worse on a night in which things were already bad.
– The Bruins lost Corvo 10 minutes into the first period when Hurricanes forward Sutter slammed the former Hurricanes blue liner into the boards in the corner of the Bruins’ zone. Corvo remained on the ice for several moments before getting up and skating off the ice under his own power. Peverley approached Sutter following the play, though Lucic was among those who watched.
Corvo returned and was on the bench at the start of the second period. It remains to be seen whether Brendan Shanahan will have anything to say about the play.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS
– Peverley’s goal ended the Bruins’ power-play drought. They are now 2-for-24 on the man advantage this season.
Aside from Peverley’s goal helping the B’s erase an ugly statistic, there wasn’t much of anything that was remotely positive for the Bruins. It was just an ugly night in which the fights didn’t help them. Even Kaberle got an assist.
|Bruins-Hurricanes Live Blog: Rich Peverley gets Bruins on the board||10.18.11 at 6:30 pm ET|
|Tomas Kaberle insists they are not called Hello Piggy Band||10.18.11 at 12:46 pm ET|
There was perhaps no more perplexing Stanley Cup celebration than that of Tomas Kaberle, who spent his day with the trophy in the Czech Republic at an event featuring guys called the Hello Piggy Band and doing crazy things with swords. When Kaberle signed with the Hurricanes in the offseason, the millions of questions regarding the day had to wait, but they were finally answered on Tuesday… kind of.
Kaberle, who is mild-mannered and very kind with the media, insisted three times that the band is not called the Hello Piggy Band. So there’s that.
“They don’t call it Piggy Band,” Kaberle said. “They’re like an entertainment group of three guys. They’ve been well-known in Czech. We thought they would be good to approach them and ask if they could play a few songs there’¦ but they don’t call it Piggy Band.”
Asked later what the band was called, Kaberle said he wasn’t sure what the translation would be, but that “they don’t call it Piggy Band.”
I’m certainly no expert on Czech trios, but look at the overalls. Something stinks about Kaberle’s story.
Kaberle actually got to have two days with the Cup, as he and fellow Czech Republic native David Krejci combined days in a joint celebration.
“It was awesome,” Kaberle said. “The second day, I went with him. We did similar stuff in his hometown. It was a really good two days. It’s too bad it was raining, but my thing was indoors at the first place and the second thing was outdoors, but people still showed up. It was amazing.”
|Tomas Kaberle gets ring, reflects on up-and-down stint with Bruins||10.18.11 at 12:34 pm ET|
“It’s really nice,” Kaberle said of the ring. “Whoever did it, they did a nice job. I’m sure everybody liked it. It was a long season, but it was well worth it.”
After being acquired on Feb. 18 from Toronto in exchange for Joe Colborne, a 2011 first-round pick and a conditional second-round pick in 2012 (the Maple Leafs got the pick when the Bruins reached the Stanley Cup finals), Kaberle struggled in Boston. He failed to improve a weak power play, displayed poor skating was heavily criticized in the media for his tendency to pass when a shot was there. Kaberle’s ice time was cut significantly as the playoffs wore on, yet through his struggles, Kaberle never ducked the media and on Tuesday said he won’t let the criticism damage his memory of his stint in Boston.
“Obviously, that comes with the territory and comes with the job,” Kaberle said of the criticism. “There’s always pressure, and if you’re not performing like you’re supposed to, you’re going to hear it. That’s fine with me.”
The Bruins told Kaberle following the season to test the waters and that they would stay in touch. Kaberle went unsigned in the first few days of free agency before eventually getting a three-year, $12.75 million deal with the Hurricanes. He said Tuesday that there were points at which he thought he’d be back in Boston.
“We were talking for a bit,” he said. “Obviously, my agent did all the work. At the end of the day, Carolina had the most interest in me. I felt like it was a good decision. My brother [Frantisek Kaberle] helped me as well. He played there before and always said good things about the Carolina organization and teammates. It made it even easier for me.
“When you win the Stanley Cup, it’s tough to leave, but sometimes it’s a business and that’s the way it goes in the NHL.”
Through five games this season, Kaberle has one point (an assist) and is a minus-5.
|Adam McQuaid a game-time decision for Bruins vs. Hurricanes||10.18.11 at 11:47 am ET|
Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid, who left last Wednesday’s contest against the Hurricanes with a neck injury after crashing into the boards and sat out Saturday’s game against the Blackhawks, is considered a game-time decision for Tuesday night against the Hurricanes, Claude Julien said Tuesday. McQuaid returned to practice Monday and participated in Tuesday’s morning skate.
In three games this season (he missed opening night due to an illness), McQuaid has two points. Should McQuaid be unable to Tuesday, Matt Bartkowski will play his third game of the season.
In other injury news, David Krejci and Steven Kampfer were also on the ice in Tuesday’s morning skate. Krejci injured his core in last Tuesday’s practice, and though Julien said that the first-line center is “inching closer to returning,” Krejci will not play Tuesday. Kampfer, who is recovering from a left knee sprain suffered on Sept. 29, is still awaiting clearance for contact drills.
|Tuukka Rask off first, David Krejci participates in morning skate||10.18.11 at 11:01 am ET|
Tuukka Rask was the first goaltender off the ice at Tuesday’s morning skate, an indication that he will be in net when the B’s face the Hurricanes at the Garden. Rask lost his lone start of the season, allowing one goal in the B’s 1-0 loss to the Avalanche last Monday.
David Krejci (core) took part in the morning skate, marking the first time he’s been on the ice with teammates since leaving last Tuesday’s practice.
|Five stats on the Bruins through five games||10.17.11 at 6:28 pm ET|
Five games into last season, one could hardly tell the Bruins were going to be Stanley Cup champions, but a couple of things were apparent. For starters, it was clear that Tim Thomas was capable of playing at a high level again after his offseason hip surgery, and it seemed that Nathan Horton had it in him to play some big games for the B’s.
Now five games into this season, there are a few things that are apparent about this team, though injuries to the likes of David Krejci and Adam McQuaid have made it tough to effectively gauge some things.
The Bruins started off the season in a 1-3-0 funk, but may be coming out of it after their 3-2 shootout victory over the Blackhawks Saturday in Chicago. Up next is a four-game home stand with the Hurricanes, Maple Leafs, Sharks and Canadiens coming to town.
“I feel we’re turning the corner here,” coach Claude Julien said Monday of the team after five games. “I liked our game in Chicago, the way we progressed through tut the day. Today in practice we seemed to have a much better pace. Hopefully that’s a good sign of us turning the corner.”
Here are five quick stats on the Bruins through five games, with a look at last season as well.
1. Tyler Seguin leads the Bruins with five points, which is a little less than a quarter of his 22 points from all of last season. He also leads the team with a plus-3 rating and has 16 shots on goal, good for tops amongst forwards and second only to defenseman Dennis Seidenberg.
2. Last season, Horton led the team with seven points through five games. This season, he has a goal and an assist through five contests, struggling mightily in the first few games of the season before seemingly finding himself of late. Bottom-six forwards Gregory Campbell, Chris Kelly and Jordan Caron (who has only played in three games) are the only Bruins’ forwards with less than his five shots on goal.
3. Thomas has won two and lost two this season, allowing eight goals in four games. Five games into last season, Thomas had allowed three goals in four games, and had won all four of his starts. He picked up his first shutout in the second game of the 2010-11 season and went on to have two more by the end of the month.
4. Bruins were 4-for-19 on the power play through five games last season. This season, they are 1-for-21, as they have not scored on the man advantage since Brad Marchand scored on the team’s first power play of the season.
5. Seidenberg leads the B’s in ice time with an average of 25:26 a night yet also has a minus-2 rating that is tied for worst on the team. Further proof that plus-minus rarely tells the whole story.