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Thread: Boston Bruins

  1. #46
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    Facing the Habs first round, should be interesting.

    On course today, will try to post up some thoughts tonight. Hectic hectic month
    Without me, it's only "aweso".


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    So, between the renos and drafting in the UHL dynasty league I didn't even get around to congratulating Timmy Thomas on breaking the SV% record with .9381 just a hair higher than the previous record set by Domink Hasek. Way to go Timmy!

    A quick quote from Thomas according from Ty Anderson's blog:

    "Hasek was a hero of mine back when I was in college. A guy who played unconventional and had a ton of success," a grinning Thomas said following his 35th win the of the season, "And even at college age I was already labeled as somebody with my style that I couldn’t do it at the next level."
    You've proved them wrong Tim.
    Without me, it's only "aweso".


  3. #48
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    Default 2011 NHL Playoffs Preview Round 1 vs Montreal

    It was inevitable. These teams have been on a collision course for most of the last half of the season. I realized it was destined to be in mid-March and even posted a thread about it. For the 3rd time in 4 years, these two rivals will meet in the first round.

    This season was just another chapter in the storied rivalry between the two clubs and will go down as one of the most exciting. If this season was a scene in a movie, it would be enough to bring home an Oscar. It had drama in the Pacioretty hit. It had action in the Feb 9 tilt when the teams combined for 14 goals and 182 PIMs. It had comedy in the the Thomas/Price "fight". It had more comedy in the teams last meeting when Montreal was sent packing with their tails between their legs after a 7-0 beatdown. Yes, this season series truly had it all.

    Let's have a look at how these teams stack up against each other moving into the post-season.

    Scoring
    The Canadiens may have taken the season series against the Bruins winning 4 of their 6 meetings. However, the Bruins have outscored the Habs 22-20 over those six contests. 15 of those 22 goals came in the last 2 games against the Canadiens. After losing the first 4 games against them, Boston finally stepped up their game and realized that they can dominate their arch-rivals when they want to. In fact, the positive spin on it is that Montreal has not beaten the Bruins in the 2011 calendar year.

    Lucic, Horton, Bergeron and Krejci have all scored better than a point-per-game against the Habs this season. 3 of these guys have the motivation of last year's disappointment still with them. Horton has his own motivation in finally getting a taste of the playoffs after toiling in Florida for so long.

    On the flip side, Yannick Weber and Max Pacioretty are the only players to have scored at better than a point-per-game against the Bs. Weber had 3 points in his only game against Boston. Pacioretty is skating and could return in the playoffs, but it won't be for the first round. Gionta scored at exactly a point-per-game so it will be up to the Bruins to try to contain him.

    Goaltending
    Thomas has been the best goaltender in the NHL this season while setting a new SV% record. However, he hasn't played his best hockey against the Canadiens. His 3.22 GAA and .907 SV% are far below his numbers on the season. But Thomas is the man in nets for the Bruins and I can't see Rask stealing any time away from him.

    Price has a stellar career record against Boston but his 3.46 GAA and .899 SV% this season do not reflect that. Those numbers are inflated due to the last 2 games between these teams, but Price is known to get flustered and you have to think those games are weighing on him.

    The good news for Boston is that Thomas had Rask to spell him and only player 55 games thise year, so he should be well rested. Price on the other hand, played 72 games for Montreal and showed signs of exhaustion late in the season.

    The Physical Game
    The Bruins main hope for winning this series is to pound the smaller Canadiens into submission. Montreal does not have anybody who can stand up to the toughness of the Bruins. The Bruins need to play tough-physical hockey and wear down the Canadiens. If they try to play the speedy skilled game against them, they are bound for the golf course.

    Julien has the team playing to their strengths. Guys like Lucic, Boychuk and Chara will have the Habs so tired and sore by the end of Game 2 that any games after that will probably be boring to watch.

    My Call
    I could easily see Montreal take the first game or two while they still have the energy. After that, I think the Bruins will have them so worn down that you could see a couple of blowouts while Boston sends them off to the golf course. Boston in 6 games.
    Without me, it's only "aweso".


  4. #49
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    Default Pacioretty and Chara talk

    According to Elliotte Freidman Chara and Pacioretty finally had a chat after the incident.

    The last questioner of Zdeno Chara's asked if he'd spoken to Max Pacioretty. Chara said he had, but didn't offer details.

    Pacioretty's agent, Alec Schall, confirmed it did occur.

    "It was a private conversation," he said later in the afternoon, "so I'm not privy to exactly what was said. But, when it was over, Max indicated he felt relieved. They may never go for lunch together, but the hard feelings between them are definitely over."
    Glad to hear it. I've said all along that Chara is a class-act. While this will do nothing to extinguish the hatred shown to him by man, I think the Big Z was genuinely concerned and I'm glad he manned up.
    Without me, it's only "aweso".


  5. #50
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    Can't believe I've never seen this "Darth Quaider" shirt before.

    Without me, it's only "aweso".


  6. #51
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    Default April 14 Game Notes - Stanley Cup Playoffs - Round 1 - Game 1

    Well, Game 1 has come and gone in the playoff series between Boston and Montreal. Despite being outshot 31 to 20, the Montreal Canadiens were able to take the first game 2-0 in Boston.

    Brian Gionta scored on the very first shot of the game and added another late in the third to seal the victory. But he wasn't the hero of the game. That title belongs to Carey Price. Price looked amazing last night. He looked calm and that spells bad news for the Bruins. If they are going to beat him, they need to rattle him. They need to spray him with snow, they need to make sure guys are bumping him, they need to get inside his head. Carey Price playing composed hockey is deadly for any club. Carey Price getting flustered is deadly for the Habs.

    The Bruins rattled off 18 shots in the second period. They were playing inspired hockey and held the Canadiens in their own head for minutes at a time. If they would have kept that up in the third, it would have been an entirely different game. We need to see more of this if Boston hopes to get back in the series.

    We'll all be watching on Saturday night with the hopes that they can avoid going back to Montreal facing a 2 game defecit. Onto some specific thoughts.

    Brad Marchand
    Every game this kid just amazes me more and more, maybe he's trying to earn a hefty raise since he is an RFA this year. I think there is more to it than that. He has so much heart and he wants to win. Some of the Bruins veterans could take lessons from this kid. Brad Marchand was the best player on the ice for either team last night, not counting goalies.

    He took one interference penalty laying out Plekanec with a beautiful hit at center ice. That was offset by his hustle all game long and his 6 shots, 4-5 of which should be counted as legitimate scoring opportunities. This kid is going to be the heart and soul of the Bruins and is quickly climbing up my list of Jersey's to purchase.

    The Kaberle Experiment
    Barring a hot streak from Kaberle that brings the Bruins late into the post-season; I think it is safe to call this a failure. He only looks good about 1-out-of-3 games and does not seem to gel with his teammates.

    Kaberle made a blind pass that led to a turnover in the Boston zone and allowed Gionta to bury the first goal. He followed that up with a (questionable) hooking penalty 10 minutes later. (I call it questionable as it wasn't so much a hook as it was his stick laying on top of the Habs players stick, however the refs often call that anyway).

    We were also treated, several times, to the Kaberle that frustarated Leaf's fans on such a regular basis. He would get the puck in the offensive zone, skate circles around the opposition for 10-15 seconds and then turn the puck over with a weak shot or pass. He had so many beautiful opportunities and failed to do anything with them. SHOOT THE BLOODY PUCK!! You've got a wicked shot and eventually one of them will go in.

    I was crying for Julien to bench him all night. Scratch him next game, cut his ice time, or intice him with a new Ferrari every time he takes a shot! I don't care what Claude needs to do, he just has to do something about Tomas!

    Chara's Shot/Canadiens Shot Blocking
    Alright, we all know Chara has the hardest shot in the league. We also know how the Canadiens shot blocking was one of the biggest factors in them making the Conference Finals last year.

    Guess what Habs, it's not worth it to get in front of Chara's shot. You are going to get hurt. We already saw Callahan break his leg near the end of the regular season. Do you really want to risk that.

    Both Kostitsyn and Moen had to go back to the dressing room after blocking shots by Big Z. Both would return to the game eventually, but they were hurting.

    Bruins, keep getting the puck to Chara. Habs, keep blocking his shot. Because eventually you won't have enough players left to ice a team and Boston can take the game by default.

    Time To Get Physical
    The Bruins need to use the physical edge. Yes, the Habs have called up minor league tough guy Ryan White, but that should not be enough to make any of the Bruins cower in fear. They need to wear the Habs out with their physical style.

    Montreal looked very tired through the second period while the Bruins were playing tough hockey. That is the key to beating them. When they stopped in the third, they lost the hockey game. Finish your checks, make them pay for being in front of the net. You've got this guys! Let's play some real Bruins hockey because I don't want 5 people texting me at the end of every game of this series.
    Without me, it's only "aweso".


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    Quote Originally Posted by 4T2 View Post
    According to Elliotte Freidman Chara and Pacioretty finally had a chat after the incident.



    Glad to hear it. I've said all along that Chara is a class-act. While this will do nothing to extinguish the hatred shown to him by man, I think the Big Z was genuinely concerned and I'm glad he manned up.

    Thanks for posting this 4T2, good to read articles that reveal the character of players. Nice to see Z do the right thing.

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    Another pathetic showing last night. After going down 2-0 early, Boston finally woke up and started playing Bruins hockey, but not for very long. I will post some thoughts up when I get the chance to do it from my computer instead of my phone.
    Without me, it's only "aweso".


  9. #54
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    This is not a very promising cup run for the Bruins. Chara better come back soon or it is going to be to late.

    If Bruins go down to Montreal good by Claude Julien but maybe they can do what Philly did last year and turn it around but I would not recommend they go down three games before taking the series seriously.

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    I agree kbooks, tonight is a must-win game and the boys need to come out flying. I don't mind losing to a better team, but I can't stand the half-assed efforts they've been putting in.

    Anyways, sorry no recap or preview, on vacation from work this week and moving into the new house so I don't have much time for the internet.

    Plus, since I don't have cable at the new place yet, I had to go buy rabbit ears that didn't work very well for Saturdays game. I felt like a kid again watching black and white, fuzzy, distorted hockey on CBC.
    Without me, it's only "aweso".


  11. #56
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    Default A few thoughts on the series so far

    Hey guys, sorry for the lack of updates but if you follow regularly, you know why I haven't been around. So let's get right to it starting with some thoughts on last night debacle that was Game 6.

    Officiating
    I hate to beat a dead horse as every sports writer has already weighed in on the subject, but I just can't leave it alone. I can not think of a recent game with such poor officiating. Especially not in an elimination game of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

    It was a joke, there is no other word for it. Both teams had soft calls and missed calls against them. Blowing the play dead before Montreal put one behind Thomas was horrible. Ejecting Lucic from the game was horrible. There were weak penalties and awful non-calls. I can't count the number of offside calls that shouldn't have been made.

    I almost turned the game off due to the refs. I don't turn a Bruins game off even if they are losing 7-0. I just don't do it. But last night was the closest I've ever came. I hope to hell that Kevin Pollock does not officiate the game tonight or I may have to boycott it.

    Whining
    It may sound like whining because my Bruins lost. Had they won, I would probably shrug it off a little easier, but I could still bring myself to admit it was a poor showing by the zebras. I don't know how anyone can say they did a decent job last night. Bad calls were made against both teams. Regardless of where your loyalties lie, you have to be able to admit that.

    The Hit
    I'm getting awfully tired of defending Bruins hits. This one is no exception. I wonder how many Habs fans called the police last night on Lucic. :P

    I can admit that Lucic had the responsibility to let up a bit when he saw Spacek's numbers. However, Spacek has been in the league long enough to know not to turn your back on a hit like that. He clearly saw it coming and put himself in a vulnerable position. Both players are equally at fault for that instance.

    Moan and bitch at me all you want for "blaming the victim", I couldn't care less. I'm calling it like I see it and I think that would have been a nice clean hard check had Spacek not cowered.

    Goaltending
    Finally moving on to some of the actual gameplay; this series has had some amazing goaltending at both ends of the ice. Carey Price has looked very sharp for the Canadiens and has proven that he is actually a pretty consistent tender.

    At the other end, Timmy has been spectacular for the Bruins coming up with big saves time and time again. If it weren't for him, our beloved Black and Gold would already be on the golf course.

    Size vs Speed
    Boston can not keep up. Plain and simple. I've heard people question their heart in this series. While I have done it myself, I think a lot of it comes down to the fact that Montreal is just faster. They beat the Bruins to every single loose puck. On the surface it may appear that the Habs want it more, but I think Boston just does not have the speed to get there (save Marchand).

    When Montreal gets the speed and skill working for them, they outplay Boston to the point of embarrassment. When Montreal tries to get tough and hit the Bruins, half the time they bounce right off them. I have laughed out loud watching Montreal players fall to the ice after delivering a hit only to watch the Bruins player skate away.

    Use your size tonight boys, wear them down and tire them out. That is our only chance.

    Shipping off to Boston
    We're back to Beantown tonight for Game 7. Every year for the last 4 we have witnessed the Bruins play a Game 7. Every year for the last 4 we have had our hearts broken. My little Black and Gold heart can't take it again this year boys. Go out there and make us proud!
    Without me, it's only "aweso".


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    There will be no additional discipline for Milan Lucic after the hit on Spacek. Great news for Game 7 even if he hasn't been contributing. I'm very happy about this as the ejection was already an overreaction.
    Without me, it's only "aweso".


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    Quote Originally Posted by 4T2 View Post
    There will be no additional discipline for Milan Lucic after the hit on Spacek. Great news for Game 7 even if he hasn't been contributing. I'm very happy about this as the ejection was already an overreaction.
    if it wasn't a game 7 situation, he would have gotten 1 game

    Weird thing is, Kesler did an identical hit in the canucks game, without even a minor penalty on the play..

    stupid

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    Default Round 1 - Game 7 vs Montreal Canadiens - Game Notes

    WOW!!!

    What a game we were witness to last night. When Boston jumped out to a 2 goal lead, I couldn't help but get a little excited. Even after last year's epic collapse, a part of me couldn't help but look forward to a rematch with Philly. I refused to get my hopes up too much though. I'm glad I did. Watching Montreal tie it at 2 was painful.

    When Boston scored to take the lead in the third, my hopes rose again, only to come crashing down when Bergeron got called for a high stick. I knew damn well Montreal would tie it. One absolute rocket from Subban later and I thought our season was over.

    We saw some great action in OT from both sides. We also saw a much more mature Bruins team than the 2 previous years. Nathan Horton managed to send the Bruins to the second round for the third straight year. I'm sure my entire street heard my celebration.

    Onto some thoughts from last night.

    Officiating
    During the first period, it appeared that we were in for a replay of Game 6. Bad calls, non-calls and just piss poor refs in general. They seemed to be a little better through the rest of the game although they were far from perfect.

    A lot of Canadiens fans are claiming a high stick led to the go-ahead goal in the third. They are also pointing to another high stick later and, of course, the Ference incident. However, both teams avoided several penalties throughout the game. Had the refs decided to call any diving penalties, Montreal would have been done for early. Although Chara did embellish on a cross-check from Eller in the second.

    All in all, I don't think the officiating had a huge impact on the outcome but people need to make excuses for their team. I might be doing the same if the game had ended differently.

    The Ference Incident
    I don't know what the hell he was thinking when he decided to give Halpern a little bump away from the play. That could have easily resulted in a penalty that would have cost Boston the game.

    However, reports are grossly exagerrated that he "drove" his shoulder into Halpern's head. It looks like he tried to give him a little bump. Dirty? For sure, the puck was nowhere near them. Suspendable? I don't think so. The Canadiens were diving all night and I think there was more than a little embellishment from Halpern on that play. He wasn't out back more than a couple of minutes and played the rest of the game just fine.

    Speaking of...

    Diving
    Wow, were we watching the Olympics? I've seen less diving from the high boards. While Boston was not completely innocent, Montreal was guilty of far more flops than the Bs were. From the phantom elbowing call against Thornton to the laughable PK Subban dive, the Habs were flopping around on the ice like bacon in a frying pan. Look at the video of the Subban dive below:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bK2EJhuHsl0

    You can actually watch him look back to see if the refs are watching and then fall back on his ass.

    We need to see more calls against this type of thing. I think it makes just as big of a mockery of the sport as headshots or listening to Gary Bettman does.

    Nathan Horton
    Horton got his second OT game winner in his first ever playoff series. He is impressing me more and more. He is one of the few players to have been in a losing environment for so long and not come out adversely affected by it (see; Kaberle, Tomas or Bouwmeester, Jay).

    I never thought I would say that Horton was the best player on the Bruins top line that features my boy Lucic, but in this series he truly was.

    Shipping off to... Philly!!!
    So winning their division only managed to secure home ice for the first round. The Bruins now get a chance to redeem themselves against the same team that absolutely humiliated them last year. I for one welcome it. In fact, this could not have worked out any better. To beat your arch-rivals in OT of game 7 in the first round earning your shot at redemption against the team that ended your season last year is the thing that Hollywood movies are made of.

    The Bruins will be trying to make their first Conference Finals appearance in 19 years!!! It's time fellas, make us proud!
    Without me, it's only "aweso".


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    No suspension for Ference. Good news as he has been very effective so far in the playoffs. A nice quote from Julien thanks to NESN:

    "When it first happened I wasn't [worried about a suspension]," Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli said. "I thought it was just incidental contact, but when I took a closer look at bit I could see where the league's concerns lie. But when you look at the whole play, we turned the puck over at our blue [line], and when that happens the D are supposed to close off the rim around the wall.

    "So he was moving that way and what Andy said is that he just saw a player off his shoulder as he was moving, as he was looking up when he saw the turnover," Chiarelli continued. "His motion and the player's motion, they ran into each other."
    Without me, it's only "aweso".


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