Bruins

Lucic, Krejci regaining their form

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Lucic, Krejci regaining their form

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.com

CALGARY The Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand Show has practicallylugged the Bruins around offensively for nearly two months, and played to rave reviews through the entire NHL community.

Theres very little mystery as to why.

Bergeron has again become Bostons leading scorer, their best player and the biggest threat the B'shave to make significant plays both in the offensive and defensive zone.

Marchand potted his 19th goal of the season in the Bs 3-1 victory over the Calgary Flames, and moved one step closer to becoming the first Bs rookie to score 20 goals since Brad Boyes potted26 goals backin 2005-06.

But the big story out ofBoston in animpressive, wrinkle-freewin over a Flames team that hadnt lost in regulation at the Saddledome in over a month and a team that the Bs hadnt beaten in Calgary since 1997, when names like Anson Carter, Ray Bourque, Jim Carey and Grant Ledyard dotted the roster was the rise of the Bruins' top offensive line back to form.

There has been plenty of signs and shreds of evidence that Milan Lucic and David Krejci were both piecing their games backtogether, and right wing Nathan Horton was being pushed right along with them. The signs and hints all ultimatelyled to the lines performance in the win over Calgary behind a pair of goals from Lucic, and a dazzling, daring performance down the middle from Krejci that helped produce some much-needed offense.

Theyve been on fire lately, said Marchand. Theyre really picking it up, and were awfully tough to play when weve got other lines going and you cant focus on any one. Its just too hard for the other team.

The newly formed trio managed to combine for 10 shots on net, and totaled more than 13 of the teams total offense with 29 aggregateshots leveled against Finnish goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff. For Lucic, everything that went down in Calgary originated with things starting to click in the win over the Senators last week.

I think we created a bit of momentum in the last game against Ottawa. Horton had a big goal against Ottawa, and helped set up another big goal for Seidenberg on the power play, said Lucic. As a line were most effective when were skating, and thats what we were doing tonight.

Our game kind of fell off there in January. We all werent making smart plays, we were coughing up pucks and we werent moving like we usually do. These last couple games I feel like were moving as we should be, were strong on the puck and were winning battles. If we want to be an effective line, thats exactly what weve got to do.

Krejci now has tenpoints (2 goals,8 assists) in his last seven games while manning the center spot on Bostons top line, and has once again stepped into the breach left by the injured Marc Savard a role Krejci has dutifully filled in each of the last three seasons whenever No. 91 has broken down.

Meanwhile Lucic had the two goals in Tuesdays win the first a great tap-in on a nice slap-pass from David Krejci while working the puck off the side wall and thenLucics NHL-best fifth empty net goal of the year to ice thingsfor the Bruins and has put up nine points (6 goals, 3 assists) and a plus-6 in his last 10 games.

Even Horton has 2 goals and six assists in his last nine games, and appears to again be flashing the ability to mix in some dominant offensive performances mixed in the more invisible performances like Tuesday night in Calgary. That's partially a Horton thing, but more a Krejci and Lucic thing as the duo has elevated their games with the important hockey month of March approaching.Both players have typically elevated their games when the big moments come, and that's once again the case.

Despite Hortons absence of production, Bs coach Claude Julien said that the top line was something thatthe hard-to-please hockey coach trulyliked as he watchedhis best offensive players finallybeginning to assert themselves again.

They were good tonight. They were good as Ive seen then in a long time here. I really felt pretty good about all four lines: everybody went out and did their job, and they were really reliable the while way, said Julien. You want to get contributions from all four lines, and tonight was the kind of night where everyone was able to recharge the batteries.Consider Lucic and Krejci charged, and ready to go.

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

Morning Skate: Habs' Pacioretty blames himself

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Morning Skate: Habs' Pacioretty blames himself

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while watching the Montreal Canadiens crash and burn in the Atlantic Division.  

*Max Pacioretty is certainly falling on his sword up in Montreal calling himself “the worst one on the ice” as the Habs really struggle to get going this season.

*Brad Marchand was on the Twitter machine after Thursday night’s win and having some fun with what his video game controller probably looks like when he plays hockey.

*Pro Hockey Talk has the details of the Erik Gudbranson boarding hit on Frank Vatrano from last night that looks like it’s going to get the Vancouver D-man suspended.

*Oliver Ekman-Larsson is still adjusting to the changes that are taking place with the Arizona Coyotes as they struggle in the desert.

*The Maple Leafs are looking and acting like contenders early on up in Toronto, and that would be a very good thing for the NHL.

*For something completely different: The Backstreet Boys are going country? Now I’ve definitely seen it all.

 

Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid’s leg is broken, will have surgery Monday

Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid’s leg is broken, will have surgery Monday

BRIGHTON, Mass – Another serious injury has hit the Bruins in the first few weeks of the season.

Adam McQuaid’s right leg is broken, he'll have surgery Monday and he’ll miss some significant time after he blocked a shot that knocked him out of the Thursday night victory over the Vancouver Canucks. The rugged, stay-at-home defenseman took multiple pucks of in successive games off his leg in the past two games against the Golden Knights and the Canucks.

MORE BRUINS:

Bruins GM Don Sweeney, in a Bruins statement released after practice Friday, said McQuaid sustained a broken right fibula and is scheduled to have surgery on Monday at Mass. General Hospital. He is expected to miss approximately eight weeks.

It’s a tough blow for McQuaid, 31, after he was able to play 77 games last season before missing the playoffs with an injury and has consistently battled injuries in his career while playing a hard-nosed, fearless brand of hockey.

“Adam [McQuaid] is seeing the doctors as we speak, so there will be an announcement about him,” Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said earlier Friday at practice. “With Bergie [Patrice Bergeron] it’s a maintenance day where we felt it would be better after 20 minutes of ice to let it rest, and the same with [David] Krejci. Miller is a maintenance day as well. He got whacked, but he should be fine as well. We’ll have a better idea in the morning, but we expect all of the [maintenance players] to play.”

Bergeron, David Krejci and Kevan Miller were all missing from practice on Friday morning at Warrior Ice Arena, but it was maintenance days for all as they’re expected to be back in the lineup on Saturday against the Buffalo Sabres. 

Tuukka Rask is out indefinitely while in the concussion protocol after his practice collision earlier this week, but the good news is that Bruins goaltender was up and around at the practice facility on Friday rather than at home convalescing in a dark room.

Here are the line combos and D-pairings for the Black and Gold with a few bodies missing from practice:

Marchand-Schaller-Bjork

DeBrusk-White-Pastrnak

Agostino-Nash-Backes

Beleskey-Kuraly-Vatrano

 
Chara-Carlo

Krug-McAvoy

Postma

 
Khudobin

McIntyre