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Canadiens chase Tuukka Rask, beat Bruins 01.30.14 at 9:39 pm ET
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The Canadiens interrupted the Bruins’ recent hot streak Thursday, taking a 4-1 contest at TD Garden and improving to 2-0-0 against the B’s this season.

Tuukka Rask was pulled for the fourth time this season and dropped to 2-10-2 in his career against the Canadiens. He allowed three goals on 18 shots before being pulled a little over halfway through the second period. Chad Johnson allowed one goal in relief.

The Habs got on the board 2:16 into the game when an Alexei Emelin shot from the point went through plenty of traffic but didn’t appear to hit anything on its way past Rask. Max Pacioretty made it 2-0 later in the period when he took a feed from Brendan Gallagher off a Daniel Paille turnover, flew down the wing and held off Johnny Boychuk on his way to beating Rask five-hole.

Dougie Hamilton got the B’s on the board at 15:38 of the first when a shot from the point hit a Montreal body and got past Peter Budaj, but it would be Boston’s only goal of the night. A Brian Gionta power-play goal at 11:54 of the second chased Rask, and a Daniel Briere breakaway goal on Johnson made it a three-goal lead for the Habs.

The loss snapped the Bruins’ four-game winning streak. The B’s have four games left before the Olympic break and will host Andrew Ference and the Oilers on Saturday.

WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS

— Rask has now been pulled four times this season, all of which have come in the last month and a half. Rask was pulled Dec. 14 against the Canucks, Dec. 28 in Ottawa and Jan. 9 in Los Angeles. Though Gionta’s goal was the only particularly bad one he allowed, getting yanked at least four times in a season isn’t a great thing to have on a Vezina resume.

— The Bruins had scored six goals in three straight games (3-0-0) prior to Thursday’s game, but they were able to muster exactly one sixth of that mark Thursday. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Chad Johnson, Dougie Hamilton, Peter Budaj, Tuukka Rask
Dougie Hamilton: ‘I’m ready to play now’ 01.24.14 at 1:33 pm ET
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WILMINGTON — Both Chris Kelly and Dougie Hamilton will travel to Philadelphia for Saturday’s game against the Flyers, with Hamilton saying he is ready to return to the lineup.

Hamilton, who has missed the last four games with a concussion, practiced with his teammates for the second consecutive day Friday and said he was “finally” cleared for contact.

“I think I’ve been skating now for, I think this is my sixth day, so every day I’ve felt better and I’m ready to play now,” Hamilton said.

Hamilton said he suffered the concussion, which was the first of his career, in the third period of the team’s loss to the Kings on Jan. 9 and played the next game against the Sharks.

The concussion is Hamilton’s second injury this season, as he missed 10 games from Dec. 10 to Jan. 2 with a knee injury. Hamilton is in his second season and said that the last couple of months have been frustrating given that they’ve halted the progress of a strong second season.

“I think I’m a lot more comfortable and a lot better defensively, and just feel a lot better on the ice,” Hamilton said. “It’s just been an unfortunate month or two months or whatever. Hopefully I can just get back into the lineup again and have fun and help the team out.”

Kelly also practiced with the team for the second straight day. He has not played since suffering a broken fibula on Dec. 7 against the Penguins. Claude Julien said that there is a chance one or both could return to the lineup Saturday, and noted that Hamilton is closer to returning than Kelly because he has missed less time and is in better game shape.

Adam McQuaid did not practice Friday and will not travel to Philadelphia as he remains out with a leg injury.

For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.

Read More: Adam McQuaid, Chris Kelly, Dougie Hamilton,
Chris Kelly, Dougie Hamilton practice with Bruins; Adam McQuaid absent 01.23.14 at 11:22 am ET
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WILMINGTON — Both Chris Kelly and Dougie Hamilton returned to practice Thursday at Ristuccia Arena. Adam McQuaid, who is out with a leg injury, was the only player missing from practice.

Kelly has been out since Dec. 7 with a broken fibula, while Hamilton has missed the last four games with a concussion. Kelly was wearing a grey (third line) jersey along with Carl Soderberg, Loui Eriksson and Ryan Spooner. With Kelly out of the lineup, Spooner has centered the third line.

“I was excited to come today,” Kelly said after the practice. “It’s been a little bit longer than I would have liked, but it’s all part of the process of getting better, and today was a good step in the right direction.”

Kelly said he isn’t sure when he will return to the lineup, but Claude Julien said that he will travel to Philadelphia for Saturday’s game and could be in the lineup within a week. The veteran center added that he “pushed it pretty good” in Thursday’s practice and felt good.

“I think I’ve done everything I need to do,” Kelly said. “Conditioning, I felt great. Obviously you can never simulate the physical aspect of the game, but I felt good out there today.”

Julien said it is unclear whether Hamilton will travel, as he hasn’t been cleared to take heavy contact yet.

Also on the ice for the B’s was Zach Trotman, who was recalled Thursday morning on an emergency basis. Trotman had been returned to Providence Tuesday after playing Monday’s game against the Kings. Though the Bruins were off Tuesday and Wednesday, Trotman was able to get a practice in with Providence on Wednesday.

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

Read More: Adam McQuaid, Chris Kelly, Dougie Hamilton, Zach Trotman
Dougie Hamilton out with concussion 01.14.14 at 11:43 am ET
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Dougie Hamilton is out with a concussion, Bruins coach Claude Julien revealed after Tuesday’s morning skate.

Julien termed the concussion “mild” and said that the team doesn’t expect Hamilton to miss too many games. Hamilton had returned earleir this month from a lower-body injury that had kept him out 10 games. He skated in five games before missing Monday’s practice.

“He’ll be out for a little bit,” Julien said, “but we don’t anticipate it being too, too long.”

Hamilton did not play the final six minutes of the team’s 1-0 win over the Sharks on Saturday, but Julien said it had “nothing to do” with the concussion. Given that Hamilton showed up Monday, didn’t go on the ice and was examined by team doctors, it’s likely that he was dealing with headaches (like Daniel Paille was last month) rather than being diagnosed right at the time of the concussion.

With Hamilton out, Kevan Miller will play in his place. The Bruins now have only six healthy defensemen on their roster. Given that they’ll leave for a two-game road trip Wednesday, the team might recall a blueliner from Providence.

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

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Dougie Hamilton misses Bruins practice with undisclosed ailment 01.13.14 at 1:10 pm ET
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WILMINGTON — Bruins defenseman Dougie Hamilton was absent from Monday’s practice, but Claude Julien was in no rush to reveal why.

“He’s being looked at right now,” Julien said after the practice. “We’ll leave it at that. We’ll give you more tomorrow.”

Hamilton did not play the final six minutes of the Bruins’ 1-0 win over the Sharks Saturday night and finished last among defensemen with a season-low (excluding the Dec. 8 game he left with a lower-body injury) 15:20 of ice time.

The second-year blueliner missed 10 games with the aforementioned lower-body and returned to the lineup on Jan. 2 against the Predators. Asked whether Hamilton’s absence from Monday’s practice was in any way related to that same injury, Julien replied, “I’ll talk to you guys tomorrow.”

If Hamilton is unable to play Tuesday against the Maple Leafs, Kevan Miller could remain in the lineup after playing Saturday’s game in place of Johnny Boychuk, who was back in Boston as he and his wife awaited the arrival of twins. Boychuk was back at practice Monday after the twin girls were born early Monday morning.

For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.

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In case you missed it, Dougie Hamilton took a strange penalty 01.10.14 at 2:42 pm ET
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If you were asleep by the second period of Thursday’s game between the Bruins and Kings, you likely missed Dougie Hamilton take an unusual and ill-advised penalty.

At the expiration of a tripping penalty he had taken late in the first period, Hamilton played the puck as it was going by the penalty box. The issue was that both of Hamilton’s feet were still in the box. They remained there on an interference call until Justin Williams scored a power play goal.

Our pal Greg Wyshynski at PuckDaddy has a rather amusing blog on Hamilton’s infraction, in which he calls it the “dumbest penalty of the season” and sites Rule 56.2, which one would figure should be common sense:

A minor penalty shall be imposed on any identifiable player on the players’€™ bench or penalty bench who, by means of his stick or his body, interferes with the movements of the puck or any opponent on the ice during the progress of the play. In addition, should a player about to come onto the ice, play the puck while one or both skates are still on the players’€™ or penalty bench, a minor penalty for interference shall be assessed.

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Now healthy, Dougie Hamilton can expect increased role with Bruins 01.02.14 at 1:01 pm ET
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Dougie Hamilton may very well go from being out of the lineup for about month to being relied upon pretty heavily by the Bruins. Losing a defenseman like Dennis Seidenberg will put a team in that kind of position.

Hamilton, who has been out since Dec. 8 with a lower-body injury, will return to Boston’s lineup Thursday against the Predators. He will be on a pairing with Matt Bartkowski based on Thursday’s morning skate, but big-picture wise, Hamilton is a logical candidate to be the playoff partner of Zdeno Chara with Seidenberg out.

Regardless of who he plays with, Hamilton can expect an increase in minutes with Seidenberg lost for the season due to a torn ACL/MCL suffered last week. Seidenberg was second on the Bruins in average time on ice with 21:50, so there are some big minutes to be picked up. Hamilton and Johnny Boychuk seem like the best bets to take the next step minutes-wise, though it’s worth noting both players are right-shot defensemen who do not play their off-side. Seidenberg is a left shot who plays both sides.

Hamilton has already been given more responsibility than last season, as his 19:10 of ice time per game is over two minutes more than the 17:08 he averaged as a rookie. He’s handled it well, posting a plus-9 rating through 28 games with three goals and four assists. Hamilton averaging 1.857 shots on goal per game, which is third among Bruins defensemen behind Chara and Torey Krug.

Those minutes might go up again before long, but for a guy who hasn’t struggled too much with what’s been thrown at him at the NHL level, Hamilton isn’t concerned.

“I’m not really thinking about it. I think I just want to start simple and kind of go with it. I’m not really worried about how much I play or anything like that,” Hamilton said. “Hopefully I can play well and kind of earn that ice time.”

If there is any silver lining to Hamilton’s injury, it’s that this season will be a lot lighter than him than last season. Hamilton went from playing in the four-game Canada-Russia challenge to playing 32 games in the OHL during the lockout to playing 49 games for the Bruins last season.

This season, having some time off here and there (he’ll also have the two-and-a-half-week Olympic break in February) to work out and stay off the ice might pay off later in the season.

“I think I feel good right now with my body and everything,” Hamilton said. “Just working out with [strength and conditioning coach John Whitesides], and with two weeks of workouts, you’re already feeling stronger, so I think it could help me, but I try not to think about it. For me, [I’ll] just try to get back to how I was playing. Hopefully it will be right away instead of a few games.”

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