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Flyers Fan

Flyers outlast Penguins; Letang injured posted by Flyers Fan

The Philadelphia Flyers never have had a problem ramping up their effort against the Pittsburgh Penguins. It's finding that same level against the rest of the NHL that has been an issue.

"I think we need to find some motivation to play like that every game, every night," Giroux said. "It's not an easy thing to do but we need to find a way to do that."

The Flyers skated most of overtime on the power play after a cross-checking penalty on Zach Still at the buzzer to end the third period and a bench minor on the Penguins for too many men on the ice at 2:04 of OT.

Philadelphia, which has the best home power play in the NHL, finally scored on its sixth man-advantage of the game.

It was a level the Flyers have lacked for most of the season, and one reason they're 11 points behind the Boston Bruins for the final Eastern Conference wild-card spot into the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

"It's hard to play this way for every game for 82 games," Voracek said. "It was a very emotional game. It was a battle for 60, 64 minutes. Obviously. if that's the way we're going to win the games, we have to play like that every game. ... Sometimes you have teams where they don't fight or don't hit as much as [the Penguins]. Sometimes you have to find a different way to win the games. I don't know why it's like that against the Penguins every time."

After a rough start to the season, the Flyers were happy to head into the All-Star break with some good feelings.

"Everyone is excited to go on a high note into the break," Schenn said. "After a game like that you need a couple days off to regroup. Obviously a lot of frustration and anger had built up over the way we've been paying. Good to see that we've gone through a lot lately and the guys have stuck together."

Continue reading "Flyers outlast Penguins; Letang injured"

Bruins Fan

Paille playing up in lineup gives Bruins option posted by Bruins Fan

WILMINGTON – Peter Chiarelli raised a few eyebrows last week when he announced teenaged phenom David Pastrnak would be remaining with the Bruins for the year. He also surprised a few people when he said the need for a veteran right wing “wasn’t as pressing as it was before” after it had been on the Black and Gold shopping list all season.

The B’s general manager was, of course, referencing the potentially key role that Pastrnak will likely play as a featured offensive performer, but also made a point of mentioning the name of fourth line swingman Daniel Paille as well.

The 30-year-old fourth liner has always shown himself to be a speedy, gritty possible option as a veteran winger that can play up in the forward group. He’s not really a long term solution as a top six winger, but he can certainly fill in short term should Pastrnak need to sit out, as so many young players do in their first extended taste of NHL action.

In those aforementioned last five games, Paille has a grand total of nine shots on net and produced a handful of good scoring chances. He prides himself on the solid veteran dependability that arrives with preparation and hard work, but also knows he can do more with just one goal and eight points in 46 healthy games for the Bruins.

The usual fourth liner will gladly accept the chance for some upward mobility among the forward ranks, and knows it very well might not lead to anything glorious. “It’s a thrill, of course. I get excited when there’s an opportunity for me to play a bigger role in one sense, but for me it’s also important to stay neutral, and not get overly excited. It’s trying to play the same as I always do,” said Paille.

Continue reading "Paille playing up in lineup gives Bruins option"


Bruins Fan

How Will the Boston Bruins Deal with Jarome Ignila move and the Salary Cap Limit posted by Bruins Fan

One of the advantages that the Boston Bruins have this season is playing in the Eastern conference. The last season’s President’s trophy winners will most probably prove strong enough for the east’s playoffs. However, they have had to deal with $4.75 million salary cap.

Some more talented players will have to go. Six players including Carl Soderberg are in their last season as unrestricted free agents. The salary cap limit that the Boston bruins are currently facing means that they will have to let some of these players go. The team has had to let valuable players like Jarome Ignila go. Forward Shawn Thornton, and goaltender Chad Johnson have also left.

Ignila’s Move

The biggest challenge for Peter Chiarelli, is trying to fill the gap left by Ignila’s move. The player who was recently signed the Colorado avalanche scored 30 goals last season. This gap could be filled by signing free agent Reilly Smith, who scored 20 goals last season. Even though he didn’t match Ignila’s goal scoring feat, the team could get a boost from Krejci who has is eager to score more goals this season.

Power Play

After taking 5 seasons to score a power play goal, the Bruins seem to have found their power play strategy. Dougie Hamilton and Torey Krug made a significant contribution to the team’s power play from the defense. Dennis Seidenberg back to his form again may help improve their strategy this season.

Salary Cap Limit

However, the salary cap limit may force the team to get rid of some plaContinue reading "How Will the Boston Bruins Deal with ..."


Randolph Charlotin

Pick Six: Week 6 posted by Randolph Charlotin

1. That was by far the best game played by the defense all season led by DE Andre Carter’s two sacks. Bend but don’t break was in full effect. Dallas gained 377 total yards, but were one for three in goal to go situations. But goodness, Patriots, work on your tackling.

 

2. A few streaks to mention:

19 straight home wins

22 straight games with a touchdown pass by Tom Brady

31 straight home wins by Brady

 

3. One streak that came to an end was the number of regular season games with at least 30 points scored. To his credit, Dallas defensive coordinator Rob Ryan is behind New England’s last two sub-30 point games. He coordinated Cleveland’s defense when they held the Pats to 14 points in 2010. The Patriots won their next 10 regular season games after that loss. Could this be a precursor for the rest of the season?

 

4. A new milestone for Bill Belichick and Brady. They tied Don Shula and Dan Marino for the winningest coach-quarterback duo with 116 wins.

 

5. Another player switched sides for the Pats. TE Rob Gronkowski was deep in the secondary as part of the Hail Mary coverage. Makes sense to have a 6-7 265 pound athlete boxing out the Cowboys’ tall receivers in the end zone.

 

6. New England sure likes to run right. 70 of the 101 yards rushing were gained going behind the right guard or right tackle. This might be fun to observe during the season.

Extra Point: This win somewhat makes up for The Sporting News selecting Dallas over Boston as the Best Sports City of 2011. Dallas got the edge on the strength of the Mavericks NBA Championship, the Rangers reaching the World Series, and TCU’s undefeated season. OK, but the Boston Bruins won the Stanely Cup, the Cannons won the Major League Lacrosse Championship, and the Militia won the Women’s Football Alliance Championship. Three championships to one. I rest my case.

Continue reading "Pick Six: Week 6"


Randolph Charlotin

Pick Six: Week 5 posted by Randolph Charlotin

1. I have to take a moment and pay respect to Al Davis. The legendary Oakland Raiders owner passed away on Saturday. Born in Brockton, MA, the rebel and leader of the Silver and Black was a steward of the AFL and helped form the modern day NFL. The Patriots held a moment of silence before the game to honor Davis. The league lost an icon.

2. RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis pounded away all afternoon for a career-best 136 yards and two touchdowns. He bested his previous career high by 24 yards, set last year against Minnesota. It is Green-Ellis’ third career 100-yard game.

3. Brady’s streak of games with at least two touchdown passes came to an end when a pass went through TE Aaron Hernandez’s hands and into CB Antonio Cromartie’s waiting palms. I heard one analyst say it was Brady’s first red zone interception of his career. Maybe he meant regular season red zone interception because I recall a playoff pick in 2005 to Denver. It was memorable not because CB Champ Bailey nearly went goal line to goal line on the return, but for TE Benjamin Watson chasing Bailey down and knocking Bailey out of bounds. Sorry for bringing up a bad memory, but...

4. Best stoppage of play: New York Jets OT D’Brickashaw Ferguson’s heel got stuck in a Patriots helmet facemask. How it happened is beyond me, but it was lighthearted moment during an intense game.

Continue reading "Pick Six: Week 5"


Randolph Charlotin

Mark Recchi Knew posted by Randolph Charlotin

As soon as the Bruins advanced to the Stanley Cup Finals, I couldn’t help but think I remembered Mark Recchi saying he believed the Bruins could win the Stanley Cup after he re-signed with the Bruins. So I did some research, and look at what I found:

“I want to go out and finish it off right by winning another championship and help this team be successful,” Recchi said during a conference call after re-signing in 2009. “It’s been a great run. I think I want to give it one more chance.’’

“I really like the pieces that are there. Winning the Stanley Cup is not an easy thing. You want to give yourself every opportunity. I felt Boston was a great fit for me. We have the opportunity, if we do all the right things as players, to continue to grow as a team. I think everybody left pretty disappointed, which I really, really liked. Guys felt we left something out there. Guys will be that much more hungry this year.’’

Confirming my hunch, I wrote an article about Recchi’s intuition. To read the article, click here.

Continue reading "Mark Recchi Knew"

Jeff Ponder

Thomas Betters Luongo in the End posted by Jeff Ponder

More often than not, the better goalie will prevail in game seven.

Tim Thomas of the Boston Bruins proved just that in game seven of the 2011 Stanley Cup Final.  Thomas earned his second shutout of the series, while also recording an amazing 1.15 GAA and a .967 save percentage in the final seven games.  Here is the laundry list of achievements that he can add to his resume:

-The oldest player to win the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP (37 years old).

-He recorded the most saves in a Final (238).

-He recorded the most saves in a playoff year (798).

-He faced the most shots in one playoff year (849).

-He is the first goaltender to win three game sevens in one playoff year.

-He is the first goaltender to ever post a game-seven shutout on the road in the Final.

-He allowed just eight goals against the Canucks, which is the fewest amount of goals scored in a Final that went seven games.

These are pretty impressive notes for a guy that started the season as the backup to Tuukka Rask.  There is no doubt about it that Thomas has come a long way this season.  Maybe his improvement throughout the season is what drove him to be the goaltender he was Wednesday night.  It was just over a year ago that Americans were questioning Team USA General Manager Brian Burke’s decision to have Thomas on the USA Olympic Team in Vancouver.

Let’s take a trip to the past, shall we?

Ryan Miller sat on top of the world as the top-goaltender in the United States.  He got the nod against Team Canada and their star-goaltender, Roberto Luongo.  In a well-played, evenly matched game, Luongo came out as the winning goaltender as Sidney Crosby beats Miller in overtime.  Where is Tim Thomas during all of this?

Continue reading "Thomas Betters Luongo in the End"


Jeff Ponder

Stanley Cup Finals Preview: Boston Bruins vs. Vancouver Canucks posted by Jeff Ponder

Two teams who have been sitting outside of the Stanley Cup Finals for quite some time finally get the chance to win Lord Stanley’s Cup.  Boston has not seen the Finals since 1990 when they lost to the Edmonton Oilers in five games.  The Vancouver Canucks are well-documented in their last Stanley Cup Final appearance, when they lost in that memorable seven-game series to the New York Rangers in 1994. 

This is just history though; it teaches us nothing of the current teams.  What do these franchises have in store for us in the 2011 Stanley Cup Final?

Here are some things to watch out for in the coming Final:

Beware Nathan Horton.  When Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli acquired Horton last summer, he was expecting someone to jump in and help the struggling Bruin-offense.  Horton put up just 23 goals in 80 regular-season games, probably making Chiarelli question moving offensive-defenseman Dennis Wideman for Horton.  But the former Panther has proven to be a success this post-season, connecting for eight goals, tying him for fourth in the NHL playoff goal-race.  His big shot from the slot has been a Godsend for Boston, who will rely on Horton to bend his stick even more in the next series.

The Sedins.  Expect a lot of scoring from the twins.  Vancouver has relied on Henrik and Daniel throughout these playoffs to lead them in any scoring situation.  These two have been monsters on the power-play (Henrik is 2nd in the NHL with 10 power-play points; Daniel is 3rd with 9 power-play points).  It is clear to even the casual observer that these two brothers are more of a threat when they have the extra-man.  If Boston plans to win this series, they have to stay disciplined and not let the Sedins burn them on the power-play.

Continue reading "Stanley Cup Finals Preview: Boston ..."


Jeff Ponder

Kaberle solidifies a Well-Rounded Boston Defense posted by Jeff Ponder

We can finally put all of these Kaberle rumors to rest.

The Boston Bruins officially announced on Friday morning that the club has acquired defenseman Tomas Kaberle from the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for prospect center Joe Colborne, the Bruins first-round pick in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft and a conditional second-round pick.  Toronto takes control of the Bruins own second round pick in 2012 if the Bruins can reach the Stanley Cup Finals in 2011 or if they re-sign Kaberle this summer (Kaberle is an unrestricted free-agent at the end of the season).

Kaberle has three goals and 35 assists for 38 points on the season, while posting a -3 rating on a Maple Leaf team that has seen 29 more pucks go in their net than on opposing teams’ nets.

Kaberle has been the subject of trade talks for about a year now, dating back to last season’s trade deadline.  He was a long-time member of the Maple Leafs and his now-former teammates only had positive things to say about the 32-year old defenseman.

"He's consistent every night at what he does," defenseman Luke Schenn said. "He establishes the setup on the power-play, makes that great breakout pass, logs big minutes for our team every night. There's no question that he is one of the top defensemen in the league and has been for the last 10 years or so."

A one-time 60-point scorer and two-time 50-point scorer, Kaberle moves the puck as well as anyone in the league.  His stretch-passes and ability to jump in the play can only benefit the gritty Bruins defense.
Continue reading "Kaberle solidifies a Well-Rounded Boston Defense"


Randolph Charlotin

Paul Kelly on the Boston Bruins Draft posted by Randolph Charlotin

I recently sat with College Hockey Inc. Executive Director Paul Kelly to get his opinion Taylor Hall and Tyler Seguin and what the Boston Bruins will do in the NHL Draft with their two first round picks. I have one correction to mention. During the interview, I said the Bruins have the 17th pick in the first round. It is actually the 15th.

Questions? Comments? Send to talktome@randolphc.com

Continue reading "Paul Kelly on the Boston Bruins Draft"

Boston Bruins News

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Toronto hires Jacques Lemaire as special assignment coach (Yahoo Sports)

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From Yahoo Sports


Sabres to host Bruins, Devils in prospects tournament (Yahoo Sports)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) -- The Buffalo Sabres will host the Boston Bruins and New Jersey Devils in a pre-training camp prospects tournament, which they hope to turn into an annual event. [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports


Winter Classic to bring Bruins, Canadiens to home of Pats (Yahoo Sports)

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From Yahoo Sports

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