|Claude Julien: Andrew Ference not yet a game-time decision, Tuukka Rask ‘has a temper’||11.16.11 at 1:33 pm ET|
WILMINGTON — After practicing for the first time since his lower-body injury, Bruins defenseman said that he is “still day-to-day,” but the Bruins doubt he will play Thursday against the Blue Jackets.
“I don’t think we’re even at that stage yet for Andrew where it’s a game-time decision,” Claude Julien said. “I don’t even know if he’s been assessed well enough to make that comment, but maybe that will change tomorrow morning.”
Perhaps the most interesting moment of Wednesday’s practice came when an enraged Tuukka Rask banged his stick on the cross-bar four times and threw his stick through the door and off the ice following a goal from Patrice Bergeron‘s line.
“Tuukka has a temper,” Julien said. “It’s not the first time he’s exhibited that. He gets mad and he’s competitive. It’s never a bad thing as long as it’s for the right reasons.”
|It appears B’s are sticking with Tuukka Rask against Oilers||11.10.11 at 11:43 am ET|
To the surprise of no one, Bruins forward Daniel Paille is officially out for Thursday night’s game against the Oilers. Paille had surgery Wednesday after getting hit in the face with a slapshot from Steve Staios in Monday’s game against the Islanders. Benoit Pouliot will play on the fourth line with Gregory Campbell and Shawn Thornton in Paille’s place.
Rich Peverley, meanwhile, is a game-time decision. Peverley participated in the morning skate at TD Garden, but so did emergency call-up Zach Hamill. If Peverley, who missed Monday’s game with an undisclosed injury, is unable to play Thursday, Hamill will skate on the on the third line in his place.
Tuukka Rask was the first goaltender off the ice at the morning skate, an indication that the B’s might be giving the young netminder his second consecutive start. Rask picked up his first win of the season Monday. That would also mean two straight games on the bench for Tim Thomas, who picked up a shutout in his last start Saturday against the Maple Leafs.
|Bruins score for Tuukka Rask, get out of last place||11.07.11 at 9:29 pm ET|
The Bruins are out of last place in the Eastern Conference as they beat the Islanders, 6-2, at TD Garden Monday night. It was the B’s third straight victory.
The Bruins scored two goals in under an minute on two separate occasions Monday, with Nathan Horton and Tyler Seguin scoring 29 seconds apart in the first period, and Milan Lucic and Horton burying two in quick fashion in the third period. Benoit Pouliot opened the scoring for the Bruins in the first period, sending in the rebound from a Jordan Caron shot and picking up his first goal as a member of the Bruins.
Horton had a three point night for the B’s, scoring two of his own and assisting Milan Lucic’s tally. David Krejci, who added an empty-netter late, also had a three-point game.
The win was Tuukka Rask’s first of the season, with the 24-year-old having better luck than Islanders starter Evgeni Nabokov. The veteran goalie was yanked after Seguin’s goal in favor of Al Montoya.
The B’s will next play Thursday when they host the Islanders.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS
– Pouliot and Caron both got their first points of the season, as Caron’s assist from the game against the Senators was taken away. In Pouliot’s case, the goal gives him more of a case to potentially stay in the lineup. Pouliot was playing Monday in place of the injured Rich Peverley, and it seems that Caron had his spot in the lineup sewn up due to his improved play of late. If Pouliot can show up on the score sheet more often, perhaps there will be more of a competition between he and Caron, and that would be a good problem for the Bruins to have.
– Horton knew he had to better than he’d been playing, and a three-point night was a good place for him to start Monday. Horton notched his first tally of the night on a wrister from just inside the circle by the hashmarks — an area where he’s been so dangerous in the past — and added his second by banging home a rebound in front of Al Montoya. The Islanders net-minder came too far out to cut down the angle with Horton and Lucic on a give-and-go right after, so Horton made the easy play to set up Lucic’s tally.
– By scoring six goals Monday, the B’s tripled their previous total of three goals scored in front of Tuukka Rask all season. Rask’s been a hard-luck loser in too many contests over th last couple of seasons, so perhaps getting some support and a victory (his record now stands at 1-3-0 on the season) can help the confidence of the young netminder.
– A few streaks were extended for the Bruins. Milan Lucic has a four-game goal streak, while Patrice Bergeron’s point streak is at seven games and Seguin’s is at four games.
WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS
– The Bruins lost Daniel Paille for the game when the fourth-line winger took a snapshot from Steve Staois to the face. He remained down on the ice by the Bruins bench for a minute or two before getting up and revealing a small pool of blood beneath him.
– Seguin gets to show up in both sections tonight based on the fact that he had a ton of opportunities that didn’t end up in the back of the net. Among them were a give-and-go with Marchand in which he wound up with a bad angle by the time he got the puck on his forehand, and another play in which he was past the net by the time he’d received a pass from Marchand. Neither of those plays were his fault, but he was just a split second here and there from potentially having his second consecutive hat trick.
|Should Tuukka Rask be playing more?||10.25.11 at 8:44 pm ET|
An interesting point was raised regarding Bruins goaltending during Peter Chiarelli‘s conference call with the media Tuesday. Remember when the Bruins said their intention was to play Tuukka Rask more than last season, especially early on?
Rask has started just two games this season, allowing one goal to Avalanche in the B’s 1-0 loss in the third game of the season, and allowing four goals last Tuesday against the Hurricanes. As was the case last season, Tim Thomas has been the No. 1 guy by a large margin as far as starts goes.
“In fairness to Tuukka, he probably should have gotten another start here or there, but you see Tim, how he’s playing, and you want him to recapture some of the stuff that he had last year,” Chiarelli said. “‘¦ What I see and observe is we’ve had had discussions on the goaltender situation. I think in the end you’ll see it go into line with what he originally put out there.”
The upcoming home-and-home with the Canadiens should be interesting when it comes to splitting up goaltending duties, should they go in that direction. If Rask starts Thursday and Thomas starts Saturday, Thomas will have gone a week without playing. Rask has gone a week since his last start as it is, and his last game in Montreal wasn’t pretty for anyone, perhaps with the exception of Lars Eller.
Rask started 27 games last season, posting an 11-14-2 record, 2.67 goals against average, and .918 save percentage. Thomas started the rest of the games, going 35-11-9 in his second Vezina-winning season. He had a 2.00 GAA set the NHL single-season record with a .938 save percentage.
|Bruins-Hurricanes Live Blog: Rich Peverley gets Bruins on the board||10.18.11 at 6:30 pm 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.
|Milan Lucic agrees with Claude Julien: B’s took the game ‘way too lightly’||10.10.11 at 4:57 pm ET|
It was pretty apparent, even before Claude Julien called out his team before reporters in a post-game press conference, that the Bruins were fairly disgusted with their performance in a 1-0 loss to the Avalanche that wasted a brilliant performance by Tuukka Rask.
The Bruins managed 30 shots on Semyon Varlamov, but not enough sustained pressure. When they got great chances, including Lucic with just under six minutes to go in the game, they couldn’t finish.
“Well, they played well, you have to give them credit,” Lucic said. “But on our part, we took today’s game way too lightly. We lost most of the battles, they were first on pucks. Regardless of if we were the champs last year or not, the major areas on the ice, they wanted the puck more than us. And that’s why we weren’t able to generate enough to get that goal.
“We created some pretty good chances, just have to find a way to bear down on them.”
In their losses to the Flyers and Avalanche, the Bruins could not do two basic things essential to winning hockey and their Cup run of last spring: Control the puck and win physical battles.
“Yeah, it seemed like we were chasing a lot and they were just chipping past us and going,” Lucic said. “And we were a step late, a second late here a step late, a second late over there. And that’s basically what happens. I talked about being first to the puck and winning battles and we didn’t have enough of that. Good for four periods and need to work on the rest.”