Patriots

Rask returns for B's after missing two games

bruins_tuukka_rask_112617.jpg
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Rask returns for B's after missing two games

BOSTON – More bodies will be missing for the Bruins tonight, so more changes will be coming to the lineup.

The most significant is probably Tuukka Rask returning between the pipes against the Philadelphia Flyers after sitting for the past two games. The respite has Rask on track for roughly 58 starts, which is exactly where they wanted their No. 1 goalie to be when they targeted a range of  55-60 games when the season began.

The short refresher this week should be exactly what the doctor ordered for both Rask’s “minor lower body injury”, and the .888 save percentage that Boston’s No. 1 goalie has posted in his past six appearances. 

“He’s in tonight and he’s ready to go. With Tuukka we’ve always talked about trying to define the number of starts he gets to be within an actual number we’ve used of 58 [games] give or take a couple,” said Bruce Cassidy. “I think we’re on target to not be over that. A couple of injuries and [Anton Khudobin’s] strong play have contributed to that. But we will monitor it down the stretch, and makes sure he gets enough work too. A little less maybe than other years, but will be on [Rask] talking to us about how he feels as much as anything. It’s also obviously the urgency of the points down the stretch here as we get closer to April.”

The Bruins are already without Patrice Bergeron (broken foot) and Charlies McAvoy (knee), but there’s also David Backes beginning his three-game suspension for a late hit on the Detroit Red Wings' Frans Nielsen and Tommy Wingels getting inserted back into the lineup as the third-line center after playing mostly wing since his arrival at the trade deadline.

On the back end, the Bruins will be sitting Nick Holden after he put together a couple of strong games and Adam McQuaid is back in after the veteran defenseman had been a healthy scratch the past week. McQuaid exited morning skate early Thursday after taking a puck to the face, but the expectation was that he’d still be good to go against the Flyers with perhaps a little more snarl to his game than usual.

Here are the projected line combos and D-pairings based on the morning skate:

Marchand-Nash-Pastrnak

DeBrusk-Krejci-Nash

Heinen-Wingels-Gionta

Schaller-Kuraly-Acciari

 
Chara-Carlo

Krug-McQuaid

Grzelcyk-Miller

 
Rask

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Tom Brady, others react to Rob Gronkowski's retirement announcement

Tom Brady, others react to Rob Gronkowski's retirement announcement

On Sunday, Rob Gronkowski officially made his decision to retire from the game of football.

Gronk made the announcement via an emotional Instagram post and immediately received congratulatory messages from Tom Brady, other Pats teammates, and more figures from around the sports world.

Check out the reactions below:

Tom Brady

Julian Edelman

Sony Michel

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Toast up !! 🐐#salute

A post shared by Sony Michel (@flyguy2stackz) on

Former Patriots linebacker Rob Ninkovich

Gronk's brother, Chris

UFC president Dana White

Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott

Bears guard Kyle Long

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Patriots' Rob Gronkowski announces retirement with heartfelt Instagram post

Patriots' Rob Gronkowski announces retirement with heartfelt Instagram post

The Rob Gronkowski era has officially come to an end.

With an emotional post on Instagram, Gronk announced his retirement.

View this post on Instagram

It all started at 20 years old on stage at the NFL draft when my dream came true, and now here I am about to turn 30 in a few months with a decision I feel is the biggest of my life so far. I will be retiring from the game of football today. I am so grateful for the opportunity that Mr. Kraft and Coach Belichick gave to me when drafting my silliness in 2010. My life experiences over the last 9 years have been amazing both on and off the field. The people I have meet, the relationships I have built, the championships I have been apart of, I just want to thank the whole New England Patriots organization for every opportunity I have been giving and learning the great values of life that I can apply to mine. Thank you to all of Pats Nation around the world for the incredible support since I have been apart of this 1st class organization. Thank you for everyone accepting who I am and the dedication I have put into my work to be the best player I could be. But now its time to move forward and move forward with a big smile knowing that the New England Patriots Organization, Pats Nation, and all my fans will be truly a big part of my heart for rest of my life. It was truly an incredible honor to play for such a great established organization and able to come in to continue and contribute to keep building success. To all my current and past teammates, thank you for making each team every year special to be apart of. I will truly miss you guys. Cheers to all who have been part of this journey, cheers to the past for the incredible memories, and a HUGE cheers to the uncertain of whats next.

A post shared by Rob Gronkowski (@gronk) on

Gronkowski's decision to retire doesn't come as a surprise. Injuries have plagued the Patriots tight end over the course of his career, and he recently opened up about the toll those injuries have taken on him.

Gronk finishes his career with 521 receptions for 7,861 yards and 79 touchdowns. Oh, and three Super Bowl titles to boot.

Next stop, Canton.

More to come. . .

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