|Claude Julien tweaks overtime approach to avoid shootout||11.23.13 at 5:45 pm ET|
The Bruins showed they don’t like the shootout Thursday night by saying they don’t like the shootout. Claude Julien did it Saturday by loading up on forwards during overtime.
In an attempt to get some scoring during the five-minute 4-on-4 session, Julien played Patrice Bergeron’s line with Zdeno Chara and then David Krejci‘s line with Johnny Boychuk, so three forwards and one defenseman rather than two and two.
“We’ve practiced that this year when we’ve done our 4-on-4,” Julien said following the win. “For me, we haven’t been very lucky in shootouts — or we haven’t gotten much out of our shootouts — so I just thought it was important to maybe get a line out there, give us maybe some more offense because of the fact they’re used to playing with each other and not about taking that chance, but taking that strategy and having one defenseman there and making sure a forward always came back. Tonight it paid off.”
Julien’s move paid off, as the B’s got a goal from Krejci’s line when Jarome Iginla split two Hurricanes defenders to set up Krejci’s game-winning goal in Boston’s 3-2 win over Carolina.
|David Krejci bails Bruins out in overtime||at 3:39 pm ET|
The Bruins let the Hurricanes hang around in a game they had no business being in, but the B’s got away with a 3-2 overtime win thanks to a David Krejci goal off a feed from Jarome Iginla.
The goal was Krejci’s first point in six games and improved the B’s to an Eastern Conference-best 32 points on the season.
Carolina came back to tie the game in the third period on a Patrick Dwyer shorthanded goal off a Milan Lucic turnover, sending the game into overtime despite the fact that the B’s had carried the play through the first 40 minutes.
The Hurricanes got on the board in the first period when, with Carl Soderberg in the box for hooking, Andrej Sekera fired a wrist shot from the point that sailed past Chad Johnson. The B’s answered back with a power play goal of their own, as Zdeno Chara was in front to pick up a rebound off a Lucic shot and put it past Cam Ward.
From there, the Bruins dominated play to the tune of registering 15 consecutive shots on goal, including Reilly Smith‘s fourth goal of the season at 13:31 of the second period. Though the B’s entered the third period with a one-goal lead, they easily could have led by two or three goals in a game that saw missed opportunities pile up.
The Bruins will finish their three-game home stand Monday when they host the Penguins. As of the end of Saturday’s Bruins game, the B’s and Penguins are currently first and second in the Eastern Conference, respectively.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS
– Chris Kelly’s line turned in another strong performance as the B’s continued to get production from their bottom-six forwards. Smith’s goal was meant that prior to Krejci’s goal, the last five forwards to score for the B’s were from bottom-six forwards. The B’s got goals from Shawn Thornton and Daniel Paille Tuesday against the Rangers, while Gregory Campbell and Soderberg provided the team’s goals Thursday against the Blues.
– The Bruins dominated the first two periods, so much so that the Hurricanes went 22:43 without a shot on goal. That’s the amount of time that came between a Jeff Skinner shot midway through the first and Eric Staal‘s slapshot on Johnson for the Hurricanes’ first shot on goal of the second period.
The Bruins held a 15-0 shots on goal advantage during that span.
– The Bruins got away with one in the second period when Chara slashed and snapped the stick of Jiri Tlusty while the Carolina forward was on a breakaway. There was no call on the play.
– Chris Kelly appears to be better after splitting faceoff responsibilities with Soderberg Thursday due to an undisclosed injury. Kelly took all of his line’s draws Saturday and won 11 of 16 in regulation.
WHAT WENT WRONG FOR BRUINS
– Hopefully Johnson was screened on Sekera’s goal, for his sake. Both Brad Marchand and Chara seemed to obstruct his view, which would explain why the puck sailed in so easily.
Other than that, there were no issues with Johnson. Of course, he was hardly tested, as Tlusty’s breakaway wold have been his biggest challenge, but it ended prematurely. You obviously can’t blame a goalie for a shorthanded 2-on-0.
– File this under unknown: The B’s appeared dodged an injury bullet, as Torey Krug seemed hobbled after blocking a shot late in the third period. He went down the tunnel, but returned to the bench. He did not return to the ice, however. Krug noted after the game that he was fine.
|Shawn Thornton on D&C: Tuukka Rask ‘unbelievable’ vs. Rangers||11.20.13 at 11:44 am ET|
Bruins forward Shawn Thornton joined Dennis & Callahan on Wednesday morning to discuss the team’s recent hot streak.
That streak includes a 2-1 win over the Rangers on the road Tuesday night. Thornton tallied the game’s first goal, his third of the season. He also scored against the Blue Jackets last Thursday. Despite the offensive outburst, he still recognizes his role as the team enforcer.
‘That’s still my job, first and foremost,’ Thornton said. ‘[I’ve been] a little lucky the last few games, but I’ve still got my real job.’
Linemate Daniel Paille scored a shorthanded, game-winning goal in the second period.
‘After Paille scored that goal, it kind of gave us a little bit of a lift, and you tend to get pumped up when you see the grinders pop one shorthanded,’ Thornton said.
In the last five games, the fourth line — Thornton, Paille and Gregory Campbell — has a combined four goals, three assists and 19 shots.
‘I always joke with the media that it doesn’t matter who’s on my line, we’re always the fourth line,’ Thornton said. ‘I remember a few years ago, when [Blake] Wheeler was here, I got bumped up to play with [David] Krejci and Wheeler, but everyone just talked about how Wheeler and Krejci got demoted to the fourth line. It doesn’t matter who it is, if I’m on it, it’s still the fourth line.’
While Thornton and Paille provided the offensive fireworks in Tuesday’s victory, goalie Tuukka Rask shut down the Rangers. He allowed just one goal, and recorded 43 saves.
‘Every time we play against those guys he’s unbelievable,’ Thornton said. ‘I think he just really enjoys the challenge of facing Henrik Lundqvist. He earned it last night, he was unbelievable.’
Despite Thornton’s solid play of late, coach Claude Julien opted to make him a healthy scratch for the Bruins’ 4-1 win over the Hurricanes on Monday.
‘I don’t like sitting out, obviously, no one likes being the guy that’s the odd man out,’ Thornton said. ‘He told me that it wasn’t because of my play, that I’ve been playing pretty well, it’s just [Jordan] Caron was coming up on sitting out 10 games straight, I think, and he wanted to get him in. And Carolina didn’t really have an enforcer threat, so it was as good a time as any to try to get him back in the game.’
|David Krejci fine after concussion scare||11.14.13 at 11:44 pm ET|
The Bruins got quite a scare midway through the first period of Thursday’s win over the Blue Jackets when David Krejci lost an edge and was slow to get up after going head-first into the boards on a hit from Brandon Dubinsky.
It was a play that featured no wrongdoing on anyone’s part, just bad luck when a helmetless Krejci remained down on the ice and had to be tended to by trainer Don DelNegro. Krejci didn’t play the rest of the period as he went to a quiet room to be examined under the NHL’s mandatory concussion protocol, but the B’s were able to get him back for the start of the second period, when he took the faceoff and remained in the game without any issues.
Though things looked shaky at the time of the hit, Krejci didn’t seem woozy as he skated off the ice and down the tunnel. Krejci said to a pool reporter following the game that he took no issue with the hit.
“I don’t think it was on purpose,” he said. “I just kind of lost an edge. At the same time, his knee kind of went into my head and then the other side — I think I hit the board [with] my head and my helmet came off.”
Though the Bruins were fortunate to have Krejci back, he had a pretty rough night at the faceoff circle, going 3-for-13 on draws.
For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.
|Bruins bounce back to beat Ducks in shootout on Jarome Iginla goal||10.31.13 at 9:46 pm ET|
The Bruins bounced back from a bad start and picked up a 3-2 shootout win over the Ducks on Thursday at TD Garden. Jarome Iginla had the only goal of the shootout, ending a two-game losing streak for the B’s and improving them to 8-4-0 on the season.
Zdeno Chara tied the game with a power-play goal off a pass from David Krejci in front with 2:50 to play. The goal was Chara’s second of the season, and in picking up the primary assist Krejci managed to register at least one point for the 10th time in 12 games this season.
The Ducks got on the board in the first period when a Carl Soderberg defensive zone turnover led to a Devante Smith-Pelly goal just 1:52 into the game. It was a rough first period for the B’s, who were credited with one shot on goal but appeared to have none through the first 20 minutes.
The Bruins found both their legs and more chances in the second period, tying the game on a breakaway goal from Soderberg, but they surrendered a goal to Mathieu Perreault off a Gregory Campbell faceoff loss with 20.9 seconds left in the second, putting them behind once again going into the third period.
Johnny Boychuk left the game in the second period and did not return to the game. He played only three shifts in the second and missed the last 14:39 of the period. The reason for Boychuk’s absence is unknown.
The Bruins will try to make it two wins in a row Saturday when they take on the Islanders in New York.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS
— Ryan Spooner, who was called up Thursday, was able to produce in his first NHL game of the season. The 21-year-old earned his first career NHL point, as he got the secondary assist on Soderberg’s goal thanks to his breakout pass to Chris Kelly. He went first in the shootout and was stopped.
Spooner, who was one of the final cuts in training camp but was sent back largely because there wasn’t room for another center on the NHL roster, centered Kelly and Soderberg, with Jordan Caron sitting out as a healthy scratch.
|Bruins review: Good week for Krejci line, Nick Johnson is scoring in Providence||10.27.13 at 7:00 am ET|
Reviewing the week that was in Bruins land.
At 7-3-0 on the season, the Bruins currently stand tied with the Lightning for second in the Atlantic Division with 14 points. They’re two points behind the Maple Leafs, who have played 12 games to Boston’s 10.
Though the timing of the games conflicted with the World Series so very few people saw the games, the B’s had a pretty hectic week. They lost a top player to a head shot, got a big win against a team that outplayed them and had an awful loss against a lesser team.
Milan Lucic, a big sports fan, talked about how much he appreciates that his career is taking place in Boston during such a great run for Boston sports
The Bruins beat the Sabres in Buffalo (recap)…
‘¦ But John Scott gave Loui Eriksson a concussion with a dirty elbow to the head
The Bruins announced that Eriksson is out indefinitely with the aforementioned concussion
The Bruins gave the Sharks their first regulation loss of the season thanks to David Krejci’s last-second goal (recap)
Jarome Iginla scored his first goal as a Bruin
People made fun of Carlos Beltran for leaving Game 1 of the World Series with a rib injury. Patrice Bergeron defended him
Michael Ryder came back with the Devils explained why he turned down the Bruins’ offer this summer in free agency
The Bruins blew a lead in the last 1:08 and lost in regulation (recap)
IT WAS A GOOD WEEK FOR’¦
David Krejci: The Bruins’ first-line center had two points in each of this week’s three games (one goal, five assists). Maybe, just maybe, this is the season when Krejci keeps the pedal to the metal the whole way through.
Milan Lucic: The 25-year-old has almost matched his goal total of last season, as his six goals through 10 games are just one shy of the seven he managed in 46 games last season. He scored two on Wednesday against the Sabres and added another Saturday.
Jarome Iginla: Rounding out what’s been quite the party for Krejci’s line, Iginla finally started seeing his strong play turn into goals. A night after a scoring change cost him a goal, Iginla’s first as a Bruin came when he threw the rebound of a Dennis Seidenberg point shot back on net Thursday. He made it two on the season when a puck he sent in front of Martin Brodeur from low in the zone went off Damien Brunner‘s skate and into the net.
IT WAS A BAD WEEK FOR’¦
Loui Eriksson: Obviously. After looking like someone who was learning a new system in the first few games of the season, Eriksson appeared to be getting more comfortable, something that was likely helped by the B’s putting former Dallas linemate Reilly Smith on his line. Eriksson’s injury didn’t need to happen, so the league should act accordingly when they meet with Scott on Tuesday.
The Bruins’ penalty kill: After a week in which the B’s killed off all five of their penalties, the Bruins allowed five power-play goals this week, four of which occurred on Saturday.
Carl Soderberg: Playing in his second, third and fourth games of the season, Soderberg was nothing to write home about this week. He had a couple of secondary helpers against the Sabres (though he also took a goalie interference penalty), but he managed just one shot on goal over the three games and was invisible against the Devils. There’s been good and bad from Soderberg so far, so we’ll see how he ends up settling in.
MEANWHILE, IN PROVIDENCE’¦
The P-Bruins enjoyed 4-3 shootout win over the Springfield Falcons Friday night. Providence got a pair of goals from Nick Johnson, who leads then with five on the season, with Justin Florek netting the other. David Warsofsky got the game-winner in the shootout.
Bobby Robins made his season debut after suffering a knee injury in training camp with the big club. Robins picked up an assist on Florek’s goal and fought Jean-Francois Jacques in a game in which the Robins had nine penalty minutes.
Niklas Svedberg got the start in net for Providence, making 36 saves in regulation and overtime and stopping five of the six shots he faced in the shootout.
Through seven games, Ryan Spooner has two goals and three assist for five points and a minus-3 rating. Matt Fraser has three goals and one assist for four points and a minus-4 rating. Jared Knight has three points (two goals, one assist) and a plus-1. Svedberg has played five games to Malcolm Subban‘s two.
|David Krejci on Tim Thomas: ‘No one knew what was going on in his head’||10.17.13 at 12:59 pm ET|
SUNRISE, Fla. — Hours before the Bruins were set to take on Tim Thomas Thursday at BB&T Center, Bruins forward and alternate captain David Krejci said that the team lost hold of what was going on with the two-time Vezina winner in his final season with the team, which was followed by Thomas leaving the Bruins and sitting out a year.
“At the end of his career in Boston, we all know what happened with the White House and all those things, so after that it was kind of tough to read his mind,” Krejci said. “No one knew what was going on in his head. It was kind of surprising, his decision, but you’ve got to respect it. He had his reasons. It’s his life, so I don’t want to comment on his life.”
The incident to which Krejci referred was of course the team’s trip to the White House in January of 2012 in the annual visit between the reigning Stanley Cup champions and the President. The entire team was joined by former teammates such as Tomas Kaberle and Shane Hnidy, but Thomas — as was his right — elected to not go for political reasons.
The team pleaded with Thomas for him to go, and though teammates tried to downplay it at the time, Krejci admitted Thursday that there was confusion among the rest of the team and that Thomas never addressed it with teammates, nor they with him.
“Obviously we were really surprised that he didn’t show up for that event,” Krejci said. “It is what it is. We didn’t talk about it in the room. It was better for our team not to talk about it, so that’s what we decided to it. It was never brought up again.”
Former Bruin Tyler Seguin told the Florida Sun Sentinel this month that “at the time [Thomas left], there was a little bit of a bitter taste in our mouths,” but Krejci said that he didn’t feel that way about the 2011 Conn Smythe winner.
“Not me. Some players, maybe,” Krejci said. “If Tyler said that, that’s his opinion. Everybody’s allow to have their opinion. I just took it the way it was. I never brought it up, I never really talked about his business off the ice or his plans. I was fine with him.”