Category Archives: Boston Bruins

B’s Beat: Bruins Offseason Mailbag

bruins offseason mailbag

Break Out The Bruins Offseason Mailbag!


Hello everyone, the 2014 NHL Entry Draft is this Friday and it’s time for the Bruins to start planning for the upcoming season. We took this opportunity to answer some of your questions about the upcoming season.

Let’s begin.

Craig Wagaman: would love a list of who our UFAs and RFAs are (or a link to one)… thanks….:

Sure thing Craig, one site I always use is Capgeek.com. It is perfect for getting an idea of the B’s current cap situation, potential free agents, and bonus repercussions. It also has a cool feature called “Armchair GM” where you can acquire, sign, and trade any player and look at how the cap would work.

Ralph Roche: why did they get rid of Shawn Thornton?

It was tough to see Thornton go, but he did have to go, and it was pretty clear last season with the B’s was his last. He is going to be 38 years old going into next season and he has slowed down noticeably. The Bruins as a team are looking to get faster too. He will always be appreciated for his tenacity and presence on and off the ice, but the Bruins have a wealth of young NHL forwards that are ready to contribute.

Michael J. Ardolino: Do you think Chris Kelly, Gregory Campbell and Adam McQuaid are on the outs?

Difficult to say, the Bruins are pressed for cap at the time, but they have also come out and said that they will not be using any of their compliance buyouts. I would try and move Soup and Quaider because they would collectively open up $3.2 million in cap space. With this you could put Kelly down on the fourth line. You could also attempt to trade Kelly, but he is coming off of an injury, is a little overpaid, and has a no trade clause. The B’s are in a tough spot with the cap, and I am just as curious as you to see how they handle it.

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B’s Beat: Boston Bruins Regular Season Schedule Released For 2014-5

 Boston Bruins regular season schedule for 2014-5

Boston Bruins regular season schedule released…

The Boston Bruins regular season schedule for 2014-5 has just been released by the NHL. Boston will open the season at home versus the Flyers on October 8th. The B’s will not have to wait until January to play the Hated Habs as they will face off on October 16th in Montreal. And will welcome the Canadiens to TD Garden on November 13th.

Who is ready for some hockey!? September can’t get here fast enough!

Boston Bruins Preseason Schedule Released

bruinshabs

 

For all the fans who have been sitting around idle for since May 14th, the countdown to hockey season has officially been started. This morning, the Boston Bruins announced the official release of the 2014-2015 preseason schedule, which is available for viewing on the NHL official website.

The preseason will start with a bang on September 23, when the Bruins head back to face off against the last team they played this year. That’s right- at 7:30pm, the puck will drop at the Bell Centre in Montreal, as the B’s begin the new season with a game against the Habs.

This historic rivalry should make for an interesting start to a season that is already full of questions. Two days ago, the final salary bonuses were released for players, and with these came the realization that the Bruins will be sitting on a hefty $4.7 million dollar fine in cap overage penalties. These kinds of numbers suggest that any hope the Bruins had of keeping the current roster completely intact- minus Shawn Thornton and probably Chad Johnson- were out the window. This re-match, therefore, is probably going to throw some new faces into the mix, and introduce some players to the rivalry much sooner than they were expecting.

Following this game, the Bruins will be facing off against the Capitals, Islanders, and Red Wings- twice apiece- to round off the preseason schedule.

 

 

Bruins Draft Countdown Part II: Trading For The Cup

patrice bergeron with the cup


So, if you’re reading this, I’m either going to assume that you’re as excited for the fresh new faces we’ll be adding to the lineup next year, or you still think I’m completely insane for my laissez-faire attitude towards the big name resignings and want to see what other insanity I throw your way.

Before we get to the meat of this not-so-meaty upcoming draft class, though, I’d like to dedicate a post to looking at the trade decisions Boston management has made in recent years. This postseason has been full of speculations about some of the B’s big-name players being shopped around the league, and while some of the trade rumors have been dispelled pretty quickly, other rumors- such as the one that Shawn Thornton will not be returning to the lineup next season- have been more than true.

Therefore, I think it’s important to look at what’s been done before, so we might better understand some of the decisions the team might make this year- and what it could mean for fans in 2015.

t all started in 2005 with the most controversial trade Boston’s management has made in the past decade; on November 30- only three and half months after signing a $20 million dollar contract extension with the center- Boston traded their captain Joe Thornton to the San Jose Sharks for three relatively insignificant players.

Bruins fans overall weren’t terribly happy about the trade. Combined, the three former Sharks- Wayne Primeau, Marco Sturm, and Brad Stuart- had put up only 36 points. In comparison, Big Joe alone had already put up nearly 32. The trade wasn’t about numbers, though, and instead enabled the team to shift its focus from building around the bruiser-like centerman to rebuilding the kind of team that Boston wanted to become again. Thornton’s attitude both on and off the ice clashed with the team-oriented mentality management was trying to bring back, and he was preventing the team from growing. It showed, too- the season he left, Boston failed to even make the playoffs, coming in last overall in the Atlantic Division. Getting rid of him enabled GM Mike O’Connell to start building around Patrice Bergeron instead, who was a rising star at the time and the only player from the 2005-2006 roster who is still on the team.

The Bruins didn’t stop with Thornton, though. Following that postseason, the team embarked on one of the most one-sided series of trades I’ve seen in my lifetime with the Toronto Maple Leafs. That year, they traded goalie Andrew Raycroft, who had already been replaced as the team’s first string by rising star Tim Thomas, for the Leaf’s goaltending prospect Tuukka Rask. Then, three years later, they traded their 2006 first-round draft selection Phil Kessel for three of Toronto’s draft picks. The forward went to Canada, and Boston was given a 2010 first-round pick, which they used to draft Tyler Seguin, a 2010 second-round pick, which they used to draft Jared Knight, and a 2011 first-round pick… which they used to draft Dougie Hamilton.

Yes, you read that correctly. In exchange for an aging goaltender and a hard-headed, high-scoring superstar with an attitude issue, Toronto (albeit inadvertently) gave the Bruins Tuukka Rask, Tyler Seguin, and Dougie Hamilton.

I’m not even finished.

This past postseason, after a disappointing six-game loss in the Stanley Cup Finals to the Chicago Blackhawks, Boston made another blockbuster, big-name trade. They sent Seguin- who had been displaying the kind of attitude issues that had made Thornton and Kessel bad fits for the team, as well- and fellow forward Rich Peverley, as well as prospect Ryan Button, to the Dallas Stars. In return, the B’s received three prospects- Reilly Smith, Joe Morrow, and Matt Fraser- and already established Swedish forward Loui Eriksson. Smith has become a solid member of the team’s second line, and Fraser scored the OT winner in game four against Montreal in his first Boston playoff appearance.

What does this mean, looking at the current off-season?

First, it means that the team can’t simply look at a player’s numbers in order to determine whether he still has a place in Boston. Some fans are quick to criticize players who failed to produce the kinds of numbers seen from superstars around the league, but history has proven that Boston wins cups when the roster looks like a family unit and not a group of disjointed names and faces.

Second, it means that Boston remains the kind of team that drafts smartly, and it shows. Of the team’s top six forwards this past year, four were drafted by Boston themselves. On defense, breakout star Dougie Hamilton is an original draft pick, as well. This draft year isn’t looking as strong as it has recently, so it’s important to look at the players the team has to choose from.
Want to hear who these players are? Check back later this week, and we’ll get to know some of the more intriguing prospects Boston has been looking at- and what they could mean for the team as we head into the next few seasons.

 

B’s Beat: Saying Goodbye To Shawn Thornton

Shawn Thornton Goodbye

The Boston Bruins have announced today that they will not re-signing enforcer Shawn Thornton. While the news isn’t necessarily shocking given the direction of the team; it is still tough to see a fan favorite move on. We as B’s fans had to do so last season when Andrew Ference was given notice that he would not be re-signed by the team.

Hockey is a business, and this is unfortunate part of that business.

Thornton was signed by the Bruins as a free agent in 2007. He was coming off of his first Stanley Cup Championship with the Anaheim Ducks. He has been a Bruin ever since, and one of the faces of the team’s renaissance from laughing stock to elite contender.

He is a surprisingly skilled fourth line pugilist as well as an exceptional leader. Unfortunately he is 36 years old (he will 37 in July) and there are plenty of players in Providence that can step in and possibly make more of an impact. It’s also tough to ask someone at his age to keep fighting on a nightly basis. This point is further built upon by the league trending away from fighting.

In truth; guys like Shawn Thornton, leadership and character notwithstanding, are becoming a thing of the past in the NHL.

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Bruins Ink: The Infamous Water Bottle Incident (PHOTOS)

Shawn Thornton waterbottle


The now Infamous Water Bottle Incident from Game 5 between the Bruins and Canadiens is going to live in hockey playoff lore for eternity. At the time, it seemed like a hilarious, harmless and downright agitating tactic by Bruins enforcer Shawn Thornton to get under the Habs’ P.K. Subban’s skin.

Unfortunately, “Water Bottle Gate” backfired on the Black & Gold as Montreal took this as disrespect and used it as a rallying cry.

We all know what happened the rest of the series and we are still trying to forget, but not this Bruins fan:

It’s a sweet tattoo don’t get me wrong, but I don’t think I would want a constant reminder on my body on how the Bruins lost a series that should have won.

That’s like keeping your ex-girlfriends name tattooed on your arm after she banged your buddy.

FILE UNDER: TOO PAINFUL

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