Category Archives: Boston Sports

Boston Bruins: Last Two Weeks By The Numbers

The Bruins seem to have found their stride as the first half of the season has come and gone and as a team hanging around the bottom of the Eastern Conference playoff picture, their current five-game winning streak could not have come at a better time. Over the last couple of weeks, the B’s have extended some recent dominance over a couple different opponents, seen their prized rookie do something not many Bruins’ teenagers have, outshot an opponent by more than they have in almost five years, fired the fewest shots on goal they have had in a period this season, had a couple centermen hit a milestone on the same night and rattled off a season-high point streak. This is Boston Bruins: Last Two Weeks By The Numbers.

David Pastrnak has come on in a big way over the last few games and is in Boston to stay.

David Pastrnak has come on in a big way over the last few games and is in Boston to stay.

1: Former Bruins goaltender Anton Khudobin made his first start against Boston as his Hurricanes came away with the 2-1 shootout win on Jan. 4 in Raleigh.

1: David Pastrnak scored his first NHL goal – first two actually – in the 3-1 win over the Flyers on Jan. 10. He is the youngest NHL player to appear in a game this season.

1: In the same game, the Bruins won for the first time this season when Zdeno Chara committed a penalty (1-5-3). They then improved to 2-5-3 in their next game against Tampa Bay.

1: Patrice Bergeron was selected as the Bruins’ lone representative to the All-Star Game for the first time in his career.

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Preview: Ravens vs Patriots

The New England Patriots will host the Baltimore Ravens in another high stakes playoff game with the winner heading to the AFC Championship game in 8 days time. The Ravens are one of the only teams in recent memory to walk in to Foxborough and enjoy great success with two playoff victories over the Patriots in the 2012 season when they went on to win the Super Bowl and back on the 10th January 2010 when they dismantled New England 33-14. 5 years later and these two teams are going to lock horns once again with both hoping that today’s game will be the catalyst for a run to the Super Bowl.

Both Baltimore and New England have faced adversity this year and both have shut up their critics which is what makes this game so exciting as well as so tough to predict. The Ravens went in to Pittsburgh last week and knocked off their biggest rivals in the wild card round 30-17 when many predicted they would fail. In recent years we’ve seen how wild card teams get hot at the right time and go on a run whereas teams with a bye sometimes struggle to shake off the rust of not playing and pay the price with a sluggish performance. This was something that happened once or twice to the Indianapolis Colts in the Dungy-Manning era but for Belichick’s Patriots you can be assured that his team will be fired up and ready to go.

Tom Brady said the other day that this is the 2014 Patriots vs the 2014 Ravens each with their own unique identity and whilst I completely agree with that assessment let’s be honest Brady himself, Belichick and the whole of the Patriots locker room definitely won’t be short of motivation when it comes to facing Baltimore. The thought of defeating an old enemy one more time is something that Brady and Belichick will be eager to do but it won’t be easy and even ‘Terrific Tom’ himself hasn’t been particularly terrific in past meetings with the Ravens as he has thrown 3 touchdowns to 7 interceptions in the teams last 3 playoff meetings.

Flacco on the other hand has been a worthy adversary for Brady and co as you can see from the stats above so it is safe to assume that today’s game will be a close duel once again. The difference this time round for New England is that this is the best defense hands down since 2007/2008 and in my opinion this is the best overall roster since then as well which is what makes me believe that New England will find a way to get the job done tonight. Joe Flacco has been incredible in the post season and since he entered the league in 2008 he has proven himself to be a very good quarterback but the physicality and natural ability of this Patriots defense that possesses so many game changers will be something Flacco hasn’t faced before in Foxborough.

We’re talking about Flacco facing past defenses that have had Ras-I Dowling on the roster, Sterling Moore who basically made a once in a lifetime in the Patriots’ lone win against Flacco in the postseason and that year Julian Edelman even lined up as a corner in the Super Bowl which says it all about how the Pats were struggling on defense as they did rank 31st that year too. The defense now has Devin McCourty excelling after switching to safety and is one of the best in the league with Patrick Chung, Brandon Browner, Logan Ryan and the gem of the secondary Darrelle Revis who has proven himself to be the best corner in the league not named Richard Sherman. Up front you have Vince Wilfork who has bounced back from a season ending achilles injury last season with Chandler Jones and Rob Ninkovich both capable of generating a pass rush as well as stopping the run and then at linebacker Dont’a Hightower and Jamie Collins are phenomenal young players with so much potential who are already two of the main players and leaders of this New England defense.

Jamie Collins is one of the best young players I’ve seen in recent memory and number 91 can do practically anything from man coverage to zone, dropping back to cover the pass as well as stopping the run. He makes big plays, sniffs out the danger, forces turnovers and quite frankly he has the speed, talent and intelligence to be one of the best linebackers in football. With a physical secondary along with other players we’ve mentioned including the tandem of Collins and Hightower the Patriots can disrupt the Ravens offense just like their old defenses have done in the past to Tom Brady. Defense wins championships and although it is an old sporting cliche quite honestly more often than not it is proven to be true but when you have an offense led by Tom Brady and a healthy Rob Gronkowski well that does certainly help.

The Patriots will be raring to go and I stand by my bold statement that if Gronk is healthy the Pats will win the Super Bowl. He is an absolute nightmare for opposing defenses and I’m sure coordinators lose sleep over thinking of ways to try and stop him or if it is even remotely possible. Gronk’s ability to make big plays, draw double coverage which makes Julian Edelman and Brandon LaFell become so effective and his ability to block in the running game proves why he is the most valuable player to the Patriots. The running game will be key tonight as if the Patriots get it going it will make the passing game run more effectively which will give Tom Brady the opportunities to pick holes in a Ravens secondary that has obvious weaknesses. History may not bode very well for New England against Baltimore but the past is the past for a reason as the 2014 Patriots are equipped to go all the way this year and end a 10 year wait for a 4th Lombardi; if they do their jobs tonight they’ll be one game away from a 6th Super Bowl appearance in the Brady-Belichick era.

Prediction: Ravens 23-31 Patriots

Belichick could get his 20th win in the postseason tonight which would leave him tied for 1st all-time

Boston Bruins: Last Two Weeks By The Numbers For 1/3/15

Unlike in seasons past, the Bruins have led fans on an up-and-down ride so far in 2014-15. Just when they are able to string a couple of strong wins against quality teams together, it seems they are followed with a shootout defeat and then a 6-2 loss. As the calendar turns to 2015, the Black and Gold will certainly need to find that element of consistency that has been eluding them this season, but for now, let’s take a look at the numbers from the last couple of weeks. They include a season high in shots on goal, a look at the goal output with and without one of the team’s best players, a first for one Boston defenseman and everybody on the ice getting into the act against Detroit. This is Boston Bruins: Last Two Weeks By The Numbers.

Boston Bruins

The Bruins are glad 2014 is over and know they need to battle to make up ground.

0: The fourth line of Matt Fraser, Gregory Campbell and Daniel Paille combined for zero shots on goal on Dec. 21 against Buffalo. They were the only Boston forwards to be held without a shot on net.



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1: Matt Bartkowski picked up his first career fighting major on Dec. 21 in the 4-3 overtime win over the Sabres as he dropped the gloves with Buffalo’s Marcus Foligno after No. 43 laid a questionable hit on Brian Gionta for which he was given a game misconduct.

1: The Bruins are now 1-0-0 in Sunday games this season after their win over Buffalo.

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Boston Bruins: Last Two Weeks By The Numbers – 12/20

The Bruins appear to be on their way back to full strength with the return of some of their core players from injury and as rumors continue to swirl about them landing some big names, their play has been improving over their last couple games despite the results not being there. During the last couple of weeks, they have seen a rematch of the 2013 Cup Finals, the first goal for a rookie winger, a dominating performance in the face off circle and a milestone goal for the Little Ball of Hate despite averaging a 10th-worst 2.42 goals per game this season. This is Boston Bruins: Last Two Weeks By The Numbers.

The Bruins have certainly struggled to score goals over the last few weeks, but they are starting to get some key guys back from injury.

The Bruins have certainly struggled to score goals over the last few weeks, but they are starting to get some key guys back from injury.

1: Craig Cunningham scored his first NHL goal against the Senators on Dec. 13 in his seventh career game – a shorthanded goal that put the Bruins up, 1-0. It was the third shorty the Bruins have scored this season: David Krejci on Oct. 21 and Gregory Campbell on Oct. 25.

1: Niklas Svedberg became the first Bruins goalie to require overtime in four of his first five career wins, according to Elias. Three have come this year against Buffalo, Columbus and Minnesota as well as his first career win on Jan. 2 of last season against the Predators.

1: The Bruins have given up just one power-play goal in their last 15 games dating back to Nov. 15.

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Romo is a Good Target for Red Sox

sergio romoWhile we find ourselves in the midst of the Winter Meetings frenzy, the Stove is currently as Hot as it has been all offseason, with no signs of cooling ahead. Now that a certain starting pitcher has left for windier pastures, it is time for the Red Sox to move forward with their off-season plan. While it is true that the team is still in desperate need of multiple quality starters, a need also exists in the bullpen for a quality late-inning guy. The Red Sox did extend Koji Uehara at the very beginning of the offseason, but he probably should not be expected to hold down the back of the bullpen on his own. Enter Sergio Romo.



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There have been recent rumors that the Red Sox have, in fact, been interested in Romo this offseason (along with the Giants, Dodgers, and Yankees). This interest is merited since: 1) Romo has been very good throughout his career, and 2) the Red Sox have a need in the back of their bullpen. Romo is a good fit because he spent the first part of his career, and even parts of 2014, pitching in the eighth inning as a very valuable setup man. Since Uehara will most likely be pitching in the ninth (at least to start), it would be important to sign a reliever who has experience setting up and can move between roles as needed. His additional experience closing games (78 career Saves) over the past two-plus seasons with the Giants adds another valuable element: that Romo can slide into the closer’s role should Uehara decline or fatigue (again) in 2015.

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Boston Bruins: Last Two Weeks By The Numbers For Dec. 6

The weather has not been the only thing in Boston to start getting colder over the last few weeks. To say that the Bruins have gone cold would be an understatement compared to the standards Black and Gold fans have grown accustomed to over the past few seasons. They are enduring through injuries and that has really shown in their play. Here is a deeper look at the statistics – most not being so pretty – that include a road slump, some troubling news about which team has been scoring first, milestones for coach and one of his oldest players, a winning streak over one recently relocated franchise and a less-than-stellar month on the power play. This is Boston Bruins: Last Two Weeks By The Numbers.

boston bruins

The Bruins are fighting injuries and fighting to make up ground in the Eastern Conference standings.

0: Gregory Campbell had zero points in 12 games in November. It was his first full month without registering a point since October 2013.

0: The 2-0 loss to the Kings on Tuesday marked the first time that the Bruins were shut out on the road this season.

1: Montreal goaltender, Carey Price, registered his first ever shutout against the Bruins on Nov. 22, blanking his rivals, 2-0, at TD Garden.

1: Rookie Joe Morrow got his first NHL point and goal in the 3-2 loss to Pittsburgh (the team that drafted him) on Nov. 24 just 28 seconds after a Milan Lucic tally.

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