Tag Archives: Boston Bruins

Thanks To Peter Chiarelli, Bruins Defense Is A Shell Of It’s Former Self

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Sloppy…

Mental mistakes…

Defensive breakdowns…

These are words/phrases you seldom heard about the Boston Bruins defense over the last 4 years.

However, this season is a different story.

The B’s “D” just seems out of sorts and at times downright lost.

The pre-season trade of Johnny Boychuk was a complete jarring jolt to the Black & Gold’s roster and their play showed it at the beginning of the season (1-3). Johnny Rocket was perceived by many to be a top four defenseman for the Black & Gold this year.

NESN:

Johnny Boychuk is one of the most underrated defensemen in the NHL as a strong two-way player. He’s entering his sixth season with the Boston Bruins and will play a top-four role on one of the league’s best blue lines.

Peter Chiarelli’s unloading of salary, threw a 500 pound monkey wrench into the defensive pairings and put more pressure on the young d corps (Miller, Hamilton & Krug).

The Bruins GM felt that he could overcome the lose of Boychuk with the team’s blue line depth. Well through 9 games this season, his depth is becoming depleted with the loss of Kevan Miller to a dislocated shoulder and Zdeno Chara leaving tonight’s game with an undisclosed injury.

This leaves Dennis Seidenberg, who is still shaking off the rust coming back from a major knee injury. Adam McQuaid, who is a shell of his 2011 (+30) self, playing just 70 total games over the last two plus seasons. Dougie Hamilton, who has struggled mightily with Chara on the team’s top defensive pairing registering a collective – 4. Torey Krug, who is great offensively, but needs a defensive minded partner to cover up his mistakes. And Matt Bartkowski is the equivalent of a 43 car pile up.

Granted, there are over 73 games left in the season, but there is a pattern developing with the once solid defensive corps of the Boston Bruins….they are SLOPPY in their own end. They are coughing up the puck in front of their own net, leaving Rask & Svedberg out to dry.

And to add insult to injury, the defending Selke trophy winner, Patrice Bergeron appears to be human and is struggling as well. He is actually a minus player right now.

They are far from BIG & BAD right now and a big part of that mindset is now wearing the blue, white & orange of the New York Islanders.

If you are a Bruins fan, be concerned and scared. This is not the exception, this looks like the rule.

And you can thank Mr. Peter Chiarelli for doing a great job managing the salary cap as owner Jeremy Jacobs so eloquently put it.

B’s Beat: Still Waiting For Brad Marchand To Step Up

brad marchand

I don’t know about you, but when I hear that Brad Marchand is coming into camp with a “chip on his shoulder”, and the best shape he has been in as a pro yet, I assume he is going to turn that into results on the ice.

Before we focus on his play through the first 8 games, let’s take a look at this “chip”.

The media in Boston, many of whom (including myself as a suggestion), alluded to the fact that he may be a trade candidate. He obviously began to take this stuff very personally, and used it to drive himself in the offseason.

I can’t say I blame him for reacting the way he did to the news. It has to be tough to play in a city you love; you have won in, and sacrificed in, only to find your name on the chopping block again and again. I always feel bad for the players that are traded from places.

We’ll talk about whether it was a fair trade or not, and the player will be picking his kids up from school and putting them in another school with strangers in a state or possibly country (often the case with older players). It is an unfortunate part of the business, but these are things you accept when you’re a pro.

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Bruins Goalie Tuukka Rask Rocks Out Behind The Drums (VIDEO)

Tuukka Rask Rocks Out Behind The Drums

Everyone knows that Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask rocks between the pipes, but did you know he rocks out behind the drums?

It has been well documented that #40 is a raging metal head, but he also like his share of jam band music.

This past Saturday night in Buffalo, Rask backed the band, The Mustn’ts on a Phish cover.

Tuukka knows how to bang the skins but I rather see his drumming talents at work during a Metallica or Megadeth metal skull crusher….

Pot Of Baked Beans Goes To Jam Base!

B’s Beat: Bruins Need More From Young Players

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The departures of Jarome Iginla and Shawn Thornton in the offseason, and the injury to Gregory Campbell to start the year; left room open for a few young Bruins’ prospects to grab a hold of an NHL job.

Guys like Ryan Spooner, Matt Fraser, Bobby Robins (technically not a youngster), Alex Khokhlachev, Seth Griffith, Justin Florek, Craig Cunningham, and Matt Lindblad all had the chance to battle for a spot and run with it.



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Let’s run through how each of them faired with the opportunity. I should warn you, it’s depressing.

Let’s start with Bobby Robins; Robins won a job out of training camp after he showed tremendous heart and determination. I have never really thought much of him as a player, but even I couldn’t deny that he had earned himself a spot.

Robins rewarded his own efforts with three scoreless games and 14 penalty minutes, including two spirited bouts, and a kneeing penalty against the Washington Capitals, which all but killed any chances of the team winning that game. If a star takes a penalty, it can be easier to swallow given their status and contributions to the team. If a role player like Robins takes a bad penalty, it hits twice as hard given their lack of contributions to the team. Robbins is currently on waivers for designation to Providence.

To be fair; it really isn’t all his fault. The game has passed players like him by. The goon age is at an end.

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B’s Beat: Bruins Sign Simon Gagne To One Year Deal

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The Boston Bruins have announced today the signing of veteran forward Simon Gagne to a one year $600,000 contract. This deal comes on the heels of another disappointing loss where the offense failed to get on track for the third straight game. It is also a necessity given the lack of production from any of the young forwards who have made the club out of camp.

 

Guys like Matt Fraser and Ryan Spooner had solid training camps which earned them NHL jobs, but have not been able to provide the secondary scoring the team needs right now as guys like Milan Lucic and David Krejci recover from lingering injuries.

 

Simon Gagne isn’t necessarily going to solve the B’s offensive woes, not by a long shot really, and I’m not really sure when he will play, but he will be a good veteran option in place of the above named youngsters. He will also be helpful on the team’s piss poor powerplay.

 

I imagine that when he starts he will see time on the B’s fourth line and slowly work his way up. I would ultimately like to see him slot in with Carl Soderberg and Chris Kelly, perhaps in an attempt to finally let Loui Eriksson mesh with David Krejci and Milan Lucic.

 

Gagne has 288 goals, 309 assists, and a +129 in 799 NHL games. He is making his return to the NHL after sitting out all of last season.
 

In other news; the Bruins has also put Bobby Robins on waivers for designation to the Providence Bruins, and sent Jordan Caron down. It would appear as if both players’ NHL dreams are in jeopardy.

 

You can follow me on Twitter here: @Mattjacob64

 

Boston Bruins 2014/15 Season Preview

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Today marks the beginning of the Boston Bruins’ 2014-15 season. The offseason hasn’t necessarily been filled with a ton of moves, but training camp has had plenty of activity which will impact this season.

The biggest move came just days ago in the form a trade. Johnny Boychuk was shipped to the New York Islanders in exchange for two second round draft picks and a conditional third. This trade has been met with a bunch of criticism, but Peter Chiarelli didn’t really have a choice. He got a great return from a player who he simply would have lost at the end of the season.

It is easy to say that he could have gotten rid of Chris Kelly, Matt Bartkowski, Adam McQuaid, or Gregory Campbell, but he would have a very difficulty time moving any of those guys for a variety of reasons. Whether it be cap hit, no movement clause, injury history, or something else; the Bruins’ brass didn’t really have much a choice other than Boychuk. Most team’s probably didn’t want anything to do with those other guys.

So where does this move leave the rest of the team’s defense going into the season? Well… for starters it makes the D a little weaker. I don’t think they are going to crash and burn by any means, but losing a warrior like Boychuk does hurt.

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