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Andy Brickley on D&C: ‘I really don’t see a whole lot of challenge from anyone else in the conference’ 12.28.11 at 12:10 pm ET
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Andy Brickley

NESN Bruins analyst Andy Brickley talked with Dennis & Callahan guest hosts Tom Caron and Chris Mannix on Wednesday morning to discuss the Bruins’ busy second-half schedule, which teams provide the biggest challenge to the B’s in the Eastern Conference, and NHL First Star of the Week Brad Marchand.

Last week, Marchand scored a goal in the 3-2 victory over the Canadiens and capped off the week with a hat trick and two assists in the Bruins’ 8-0 dismantling of the Panthers.

“I think we should be a little surprised to the degree that he’s playing as well as he’s playing,” Brickley said. “I think any good team and any good young player that fits into a real good hockey club that’s deep and balanced like Boston, you expect those young players to get better from their rookie seasons and you’ve certainly seen that from both [Tyler] Seguin and Marchand. To think that he would be this good this early — this productive and this reliable — is a little bit of a surprise. But keep in mind both of those young players bring a nice element of speed along with their skill set to the Bruins.”

Brickley has been just as impressed by the play of Patrice Bergeron, who is on pace to have his most productive season and has lifted Marchand and Seguin.

“They play with a guy in the middle like Bergeron and that’s a huge benefit to them,” Brickley said. “It allows them to play to their strengths, have a little bit more freedom offensively because Bergeron will distribute the puck, he’ll take care of all three zones, and he’ll win his puck battles, and he’s so reliable and dependable yet he’s got an offensive flair himself. So to have that kind of centerman in the middle — that kind of experience, that kind of talent — is a huge benefit for those two guys.”

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Read More: Andy Brickley, Boston Bruins, Brad Marchand, Tim Thomas
Brad Marchand named first star of the week 12.26.11 at 12:14 pm ET
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Bruins forward Brad Marchand was named the NHL’s first star for the week ending Dec. 25 after the youngster turned in dominant performances in a pair of games last week.

Marchand had six points (four goals and two assists) and recorded his first career hat trick in Friday’s win over the Panthers. His other goal during the week, a third period tally against the Canadiens on Monday, proved to be the game-winning goal in that contest. The 23-year-old leads the Bruins with 15 goals this season.

New York forward Marian Gaborik and Colorado goaltender Jean-Sebastian Giguere were named the second and third stars, respectively.

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Brad Marchand: Sensational and significant 12.20.11 at 10:32 am ET
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There are highlight reel goals. And, there are game-winning goals.

On rare occasions, you get both in one. Monday night, Brad Marchand gave Bruins fans a 2-for-1 holiday special with his deke-to-backhander that beat Montreal’s Carey Price with just over five minutes remaining to put the Bruins up, 3-1. It turned out to be the difference when Erik Cole scored with 1:14 left as the Bruins hung on for a 3-2 win.

“Once I got my head up, he was already in the motion of poke checking, and I just pulled it around him, and luckily it went in,” Marchand said.

Marchand was quick to thank linemate Tyler Seguin for his vision to see Marchand breaking down the slot for the goal.

“Well, once Segs got it, I saw [the defenseman] decided to go to him, and I was all alone, so I was hoping he’d get it through and he made the play to get it done,” Marchand said.

All of this for a team know for scoring “dirty work” goals, fighting along the boards and finding a way to finish. On this night, the finish by Marchand was spectacular.

“I think sometimes people underestimate our team for the amount of skill we have, but, you know, we have a lot of guys who make great plays, and every now and then we get a nice goal,” Marchand said. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Boston Bruins, Brad Marchand, Florida Panthers, Montreal Canadiens
Bruins-Canadiens Live Blog: Brad Marchand increases lead 12.19.11 at 6:46 pm ET
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Read More: Benoit Pouliot, Brad Marchand, David Krejci, Milan Lucic
Tuukka Rask: ‘Just try to save every puck’ 12.14.11 at 9:58 am ET
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There were several chances for Tuukka Rask to blink in the third period Tuesday and lose his first shutout of the season.

But the Bruins goalie, on the heels of replacing Tim Thomas on Saturday in Columbus, didn’t flinch. He turned away all 20 shots in the third period, and all 41 for the game as the Bruins beat the Kings, 3-0.

“I just tried to save every puck,” Rask said of his ninth career shutout. “You don’t want to think about shutouts because you might chase yourself but – couple tough chances in the end but that was it.

“You just try to protect your lead and we hopefully get that third goal. They came out hard so got some pretty good chances but were able to keep them off the scoreboard and then Marchy [Brad Marchand] got a nice goal there to extend the lead so that was good to see.”

Kings wing Dustin Brown had a golden opportunity with just about three minutes remaining when Johnny Boychuk lost contain on his man.

“[Brown] pretty much didn’t have anything else and just tried to shoot it upstairs, don’t know if he actually shot it low or something but it was some kind of misplay there and Johnny was just taking back door and he left the guy there for me and – hit something,” Rask said.

Rask said he wasn’t looking at the shots accumulating on the scoreboard during the final 20 minutes.

“I don’t think you have time to watch the shot clock or anything but you definitely feel the momentum changing at times and today they had a lot of chances in the third,” he said. “And maybe we weren’t at our sharpest but they came at us pretty hard too.

So, on a night the Bruins didn’t have captain Zdeno Chara for the first time this season, the Bruins needed Rask to be the true last line of defense.

“Probably some part of that is Z missing but I think we also need to tighten up,” Rask said. “We weren’t that bad we didn’t give too many second chances and lots of shots came from the outside and stuff. But it’s just one of those games where you get lots of shots against and I don’t think it’s because of [Chara] missing.

“You need some luck to have some shutouts too. They had a couple of posts today. And I think it’s definitely tougher to have a shutout than to play one period.”

Now, Claude Julien has a decision to make. Will he ride the hot hand tonight in Ottawa with Rask or will he go back to his No. 1 in Tim Thomas? No matter the answer, Rask showed Tuesday that the Bruins now have two dependable netminders as they hit the road to take on the Senators and Flyers this week.

“He was good tonight, arguably our best player tonight,” Julien said. “He stood tall and they threw a lot of shots at him, certainly not easy shots to stop. There was a lot of traffic in front of the net—screens. He had the quick feet going, made the saves on close-range and was probably our best player. So he got better as the game went on and I thought he did a good job the other night coming in and kind of settling himself in in the third period and then he just carried that into tonight.”

Read More: Boston Bruins, Brad Marchand, Dustin Brown, Los Angeles Kings
Bruins-Kings Live Blog: Brad Marchand’s second of the night makes it 3-0 12.13.11 at 6:55 pm ET
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Read More: Brad Marchand, Daniel Paille, Jordan Caron, Rich Peverley
Claude Julien: Brad Marchand deserved to be fined at 6:40 pm ET
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Claude Julien didn’t even know Brad Marchand was fined for his slew-foot on Matt Niskanen last week until he was asked about it Tuesday, but the Bruins coach wasn’t surprised by the punishment. In fact, he felt his player deserved it.

“When it happened, I addressed it right after the period,” Julien said Tuesday. “You know, there’s certain things that we all can deal with, with certain players and what they do but slew-footing is certainly not something that I like to see, whether it’s for or against us. If he’s going to be doing that, then he’s going to get fined. He’s deserving of it and he has to own up to his mistakes, and he’s done a good job of doing that.

“Again we talk about a young player who’s trying to find that, the fine line and not crossing it and there’s times where he does and he gets fined and again, we’ve addressed it,” he added. “I want him, as I put in my own words, I want him to be a good brat, not a bad brat, so I used that term with him and that means don’t cross the line and I thought he did that time. And his response was ‘I thought I was going to get away with it’ so, but that’s not what you want to see from your players.”

Marchand was fined $2,500 by the league on Monday. The incident occurred last Monday against the Penguins.

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