Bruins

Julien: 'It doesn't matter who they throw in net'

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Julien: 'It doesn't matter who they throw in net'

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.com
BOSTON The Bruins were made aware theyll be seeing a different goaltender between the pipes for the Flyers tonight when Peter Laviolette announced 22-year-old Russian rookie Sergei Bobrovsky will get the start for the Flyers in Game Four down 3-0 in the best-of-seven series.Bobrovsky is 0-1 with a 3.28 goals against average in five appearances during the playoffs for the Flyers, and looked excellent in Game Two for Philly at the Wells Fargo Center when he came on in relief of an injured Brian Boucher. A team can normally derive some spark or energy from a goaltending change, but that might not apply to a Flyers club that has switched goalies in seven out of the 10 playoff games theyve played thus far. Thats a recipe for disaster and an indictment of a severely shoddy defense.Bruins coach Claude Julien said it didnt matter to the Bruins which goalie shows up to play against them, and its more about the Bs finishing off the job theyve started in their first three wins over the Flyers.The book on Bobrovsky is hes very beatable on anything shot upstairs in the net as are most goaltenders but Julien said that theyve already gone over their Philly scouting reports and are ready for anything.It doesnt really matter to us who they throw in net, were prepared for every scenario at this point, said Julien. Its just a matter of going out there, doing the job and doing it right. Andrew Ference was asked during pregame availability what the difference in approach has been from the intense seven game series against the Montreal Canadiens compared to the current series against the Flyers.His answer was pretty telling and reveals just how seriously the Bruins are taking things at this point.This is as focused as Ive ever seen our team before, said Ference when asked to describe the Game Four mindset for so many guys that lived through last seasons collapse. "This series there has been no shortage of us really wanting to do well. The first series against the Habs was emotional. This has been much more business-like" The Bruins added this tidbit to their weekly notes package on Friday afternoon: Since the playoffs started, the following five players are tied for the second highest amount of Bruins namenumber t-shirt orders in the Boston Bruins Pro Shop, according to Retail Director of the Pro Shop, Lauma Cerlins: Nathan Horton, Milan Lucic, Tim Thomas, Patrice Bergeron, Zdeno Chara.What may be surprising to some is that the best seller thus far is Brad Marchands No. 63, as the Pro Shop has had to order three-times as many tees (compared to the group of five players above) to meet the demand for the popular Bs rookie. The Bruins announced that all of their season tickets for the 2011-12 regular season have been sold out, and that the team has started a waiting list for season tickets in the loge and balcony sections. So we have reached our capacity for season tickets in the loge and balcony, which is twelve thousand seats and we started a wait list just so we can start to take, in order, people who are interested in season tickets, said Bruins Vice President of Ticket Sales Amy Latimer. Its a one hundred dollar deposit per seat. Their benefits throughout the year are that they are going to get additional offers for Bruins tickets, Garden events and they will have a season ticket rep. that will work with them basically on their preference location, price range, all those things. Julien said that defenseman Adam McQuaid skated for the first time on Friday morning since spraining his neck after tumbling face-first into the boards at the Wells Fargo Center in Game Two, and hes getting better. Still no timetable on a return for McQuaid however.

Joe Haggerty can be reached at jhaggerty@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs

David Krejci, Adam McQuaid forced out of Bruins win with injuries

David Krejci, Adam McQuaid forced out of Bruins win with injuries

BOSTON – The Bruins returned Patrice Bergeron and David Backes to good health and their lineup on Thursday night, but they also saw a few more players get banged up in their win over the Vancouver Canucks. 

David Krejci exited Thursday night’s 6-3 win over the Canucks with an upper body injury after scoring a power play goal, and Adam McQuaid also had to leave the game after dropping to one knee to block a shot with his right leg. McQuaid was also already banged up after taking a shot off his knee in last weekend’s loss to the Vegas Golden Knights, so taking another shot off the leg certainly wasn’t a helpful development. 

“He blocked a shot, so he’ll get evaluated tonight or tomorrow. I don’t know how serious – he blocks a lot of shots. This one stung him obviously so we’ll see how it turns out. Adam [McQuaid] has been doing that for years around here. He’s one of the unsung heroes in that locker room. Doesn’t get a lot of credit for what he does, the tough parts of the game, blocking shots, sticking up for your teammates,” said Bruce Cassidy. “He actually manages the puck very well. He’s not a flashy player. He’s not a guy that just throws it away either. He makes good decisions with it, and every team needs an Adam McQuaid. We’re certainly fortunate to have him.”

With Krejci it appeared that he suffered some back spasms after getting cross-checked, and that’s what ended up forcing him out of the win. Cassidy doesn’t foresee it being a long-term thing with Krejci, who finished with a goal and two points in 8:21 of ice time centering Jake DeBrusk and David Pastrnak.  

“He has an upper body; he had to leave. He wasn’t feeling too terrific today, and then he got, I think there was a cross-check there. He tried it, but couldn’t continue [playing]. I think he had some spasms, but I don’t think there’s anything long-term there at all.”

It remains to be seen if either McQuaid or Krejci will miss any time with the bumps and bruised suffered on Thursday, but it goes without saying that the Bruins hope they can stay in a lineup that’s beginning to take shape with the full group. 

Haggerty: Patrice Bergeron returns as game-changing force for Bruins

Haggerty: Patrice Bergeron returns as game-changing force for Bruins

BOSTON – To the surprise of absolutely nobody, the presence of Patrice Bergeron is a major game-changer for the Boston Bruins. 

Bergeron finally felt good enough to return to the B’s lineup after missing the first five games of the season with a lower body injury, and the impact was immediate and unmistakable with a goal and four points in a 6-3 win for the Bruins over the Vancouver Canucks at TD Garden. It was also a far-reaching impact with the Bruins center pumping life back in the B’s power play with a return to his bumper position, returning a top penalty killer to the Bruins rotation, bringing normalcy back to the forward group by slotting fellow forwards back into their rightful spots and simply giving the B’s their best all-around player back. 

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Clearly it was a joyous moment for Bergeron to get back on the ice and play after getting a couple of good days in on the practice ice leading up to Thursday night. 

“It’s hard no matter what it is. You know, when you’re missing games, when you’re missing time, it’s… you miss being out there with the guys and battling with them and going through what we have to go through as a team. It’s good to be back,” said Bergeron. “You don’t know what to expect obviously [after a long layoff]. You’re trying to hope for the best. I don’t want to say I was surprised [at his high level of play] because you want to be at your best every time you step on the ice.”

Bergeron, Brad Marchand and Anders Bjork finally skated together for the first time after building chemistry all throughout training camp, and they finished with four goals, 10 points, a plus-6 rating and 13 of Boston’s 35 shots on net for the game. It was the way that the Bruins roster was drawn up headed into the season before they had a five-game detour due to the injuries, and the hope is that’s the way it will continue to look for the Black and Gold moving forward. 

“I mean it’s pretty evident, you know, the way [Bergeron] played out there. He just, it’s incredible the way he came back and dominated the game after being out for that long, you know?” said Brad Marchand, who finally has his longtime partner-in-crime back. “He’s just such a big part of the group. He’s able to calm things down in the room, on the bench, and he leads by example. He just does everything that a top guy does.”

Perhaps most striking of all was the emotion and organization that the Bruins played with having Bergeron and David Backes back in the lineup. The breakouts, reloading counter-attacks and defensive zone coverage all had more noticeable structure, and the Bruins were able to get the wave after wave attack from their forward groups that spurred on goals both during 5-on-5 play and when special teams were involved. 

Some of that is getting two highly talented players like Bergeron and Backes back from injury, and some of it is getting an important, tone-setting leader like No. 37 back for everything he does off the ice as well. 

Bergeron set up the important answering goal in the first period by firing a puck that created a rebound for Bjork to clean up, he did the same for David Krejci’s power play to close out the first period scoring, he created the turnover that led to Marchand’s goal in the second period and then he sniped home his own goal from the bumper spot to finally clinch things in the third period. It was clear that Bergeron is still navigating through discomfort and some level of injury while playing at this point, but his hockey IQ and his gritty toughness are allowing him to still be a highly effective player. 

“I think it was self-evident out there that the play on the ice, first of all, built a matchup against whoever we really want. The Power play obviously [was a] big impact there. I think it’s just morale as much as anything, on the bench and in the room,” said Bruce Cassidy. “Those intangibles, leadership, first shift of the game, he’s standing up. They had scored a goal and [he’s] kind of settling the troops down, talking about the details of the game. 

“[He’s talking about] finishing your routes on the fore-check and reloading all the way to our zone.

[It’s the] stuff that coaches preach a lot, but goes in one ear and out the other sometimes. When you hear it from the leaders of the group, it means so much more. To have that back in the room and along with David Backes, those are guys that are just vocal players that bring a lot in that aspect. It’s generally, a quiet group. That doesn’t mean you can’t be effective and win as a quiet group, but it just helps sometimes to have a little bit of that energy.”

While it was a clearly a feel-good story to see Bergeron back in his proper environs on the ice, it was also just as apparent there’s still some lower body discomfort with the Bruins center. He looked like he was in pain or laboring at times out on the ice, and admitted after the game that the lower body injury might be something he’ll need to manage for the time being. That would tend to mean that once again this isn’t something that’s going to go away anytime soon, and Bergeron will again need to grind his way through the pain. 

“That’s the million dollar question, right? I don’t know what to say to that. I guess yeah, I mean I’m feeling good,” said Bergeron. “But there’s… we might manage a little bit for quite a while. But I’m feeling good and tonight was no issue.”

Clearly Bergeron and the Bruins will gladly take it if he can be a difference-maker like he was on Thursday night with a four points, eight shot attempts and plenty of hard-working shifts in his 20:58 of ice time for the game. They’ll just need to keep their fingers crossed that No. 37 can keep suiting up and playing at a high level, and that the 32-year-old can avoid any further problems after already sitting out the first five games of the regular season.