Zdeno Chara: The Bruins Ageless Wonder

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Photo Credit: NHL.com

By: Lauren Campbell | Follow on Twitter: @lalalalaurrrren

In a year where the Bruins are completely exceeding expectations, there is one player who is quietly underrated. For what it’s worth, it’s definitely fun to talk about how fun this team is – from the rookies, Patrice Bergeron is having a spectacular year to Tuukka Rask completely turning into a brick wall – it’s easy to overlook one specific player.


That player is the captain of this team and someone who is proving age is just a number: Zdeno Chara.

Big Z will be 41-years-old in less than a month, and the’s shown no signs of aging. Maybe it’s playing with young kids such as Charlie McAvoy, or maybe he’s adopting some Tom Brady-like diet.

Or maybe he’s continuing to be a consistent, solid defenseman.

He showed just how solid of a player he is in last week’s 3-2 comeback win over Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers. Chara was matched up against McDavid, who is arguably the games most dynamic offensive player, for 15:12 of the 17:40 he was on the ice.

During that time, Boston outshot Edmonton 12-4, and David  Krejci scored the game-winning goal late in the third period. But what was truly amazing about Chara being matched up against McDavid for most of his ice time was McDavid’s final line: zero goals, zero assists, a minus-1 rating and had just two shots.

Those two shots came in a two-second span, and it was just the 10 time on the season McDavid was held to zero points in a game.

Chara has always been a force on the ice season after season, but this 2017-18 season, much like the entire Bruins team, is exceeding expectations and is playing incredibly well at the age of 40.

His numbers aren’t anything spectacular – six goals and 11 assists doesn’t jump out at anyone – but his ice time most certainly does. The captain leads the team in average ice time with 23:20.

Chara has been the captain of this team for several years and this season especially is proving why he is continuing to be deserving of sporting the C. He is a veteran leader for the rookies and isn’t afraid to stand up for his teammates and drop the gloves.

We saw that this season against Anaheim when he went up against Ryan Getzlaf in January. No, he’s not a 20-year-old Charlie McAvoy or 21-year-old Jake DeBrusk – but Chara’s presence on the ice is something that needs to be paid attention to.

The black and gold are doing something spectacular this season. They’re in second place in the Atlantic Division during what was supposed to be a rebuilding year – and Chara is playing a significant role in where this team is in the standings.

Age is just a number, yes. New England sports fans see that every season with Tom Brady and what he does for the Patriots each year. But now Boston has another 40-year-old player to get excited about because it seems as if Chara is indeed an ageless wonder this season.

Bruins Anders Bjork Out For The Season

Photo Credit:  NHL .com

By: Mark Allred | Follow on Twitter @BlackAndGold277

The Boston Bruins announced this afternoon that rookie forward Anders Bjork will be out for the remainder of the season. The B’s fifth-round selection in the 2014 National Hockey League Entry Draft appeared in 30 games for Boston contributing 4-8-12 numbers this season.

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After three seasons at the University of Notre Dame where he posted 109 points in 115 games, Bjork left the collegiate ranks to join the Bruins but his first season has been a tough one for the 21-year-old winger.  Regardless of his point totals (which shouldn’t be a knock on his development as a first-year NHL’er), the riggers of the higher league didn’t at all come easy for the highly touted forward. Bjork missed some time after a center-ice head-on collision with Toronto Maple Leafs tough guy Matt Martin back in November of 2017 and seemingly reaggravated that injury in a game against the Anaheim Ducks when defenseman Francios Beauchemin took liberties on the rookie after a whistle with a cross-check to the forearm/shoulder area at TD Garden on January 30, 2018.

Here is a video of the Matt Martin hit on Anders Bjork

The 6′-0″ 185-pound Wisconsin native underwent successful left shoulder arthroscopy and labral repair on February 20, 2018. Team Physician Dr. Peter Asnis performed the procedure at Mass General Hospital and is believed to miss at least six months of any hockey-related activities.

Boston Bruins Trade Frank Vatrano To Florida

 

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Frank Vatrano #72 of the Boston Bruins heads up ice in the first period while playing the Detroit Red Wings at Little Caesars Arena on February 6, 2018, in Detroit, Michigan.
(Feb. 5, 2018 – Source: Gregory Shamus/Getty Images North America)

By Andrew Thompson | Follow on twitter @godwentwhoops

Earlier today, the Boston Bruins organization announced that they had traded forward Frank Vatrano to the Florida Panthers in exchange for a third-round pick.

The writing was on the wall for this one. While a lot of people seem to love the story about the local boy who becomes a gritty winger, it doesn’t work out too well for the Bruins organization in general (Jimmy Hayes was the most recent example.).

That Bruins GM Don Sweeney got something out of nothing is rather outstanding. He solved the bottom-six log jam at the forward position, got the team a decent level draft pick, and even shaved a little room off the salary cap in one fell swoop.

In short, nobody lost out on this trade.

The Boston Bruins knew they had a player of limited value on their hands. Vatrano made the team by the skin of his teeth this season and fell by the wayside as younger and more exciting players fought their way on to this year’s roster. He had only played in 25 games this season. The rest of the time found the 23-year old Mass native injured or as a healthy scratch.

When it comes to forwards, the Bruins have an embarrassment of riches on their hands. With so many good players on the team, the Bruins organization would have had to eventually put him on waivers. Another NHL team would have quickly snapped him up, and Boston would have had nothing to show for it in the process.

The Florida Panthers could certainly use some bottom-six help right now, so they’re certainly not complaining about giving up a third-round pick for someone who can come in and help on day one.

As for Frank Vatrano, he gets to stay in the NHL.  Had Vatrano got passed waivers, he would have found himself playing in Providence against other players who had a strong chance to bypass him on their way up to Boston. That would have led to Vatrano turning into a career NHL/AHL swing player.

It’s certainly disappointing to see Vatrano go, but there was only so much he could offer the Bruins organization.

As I said, there are no losers in this one. The Boston Bruins win. The Florida Panthers (one of my adultery teams) win. Frank Vatrano wins.  Bruins fans should give a stick tap to Don Sweeney for making this little piece of magic work.

An Early Look at 2018 Free-Agency, And Who Could Be The Next Bruin

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Photo: nhl.com

By Thomas Nyström | Follow on twitter @nahstrom

The front office of the Boston Bruins has shown that they have a strong grasp on the idea that the success of the franchise hinges on drafting and developing talent, retaining character individuals, and inserting capable veterans that fit their idea of roster needs with regards to maximizing roles. Part of that last bit comes with shrewd and thoughtful spending as one bad contract can set a franchise back for years in terms of cap flexibility and blocking youth from having a spot where they could potentially contribute on the NHL level.

That said, I feel it’s never to early to start looking at the 2018 free agent market. There will be a number of valuable assets to be courted by seasons end and in the spirit of staying ahead of the game, I have a short list of names General Manager Don Sweeney and company may target when the signing period begins this summer.

Here are some key veterans to keep your eye on, in no particular order:


Patric Hornqvist, RW

2017-18 Cap Hit: $4,250,000

Having watched him for a number of years with the Nashville Predators, Hornqvist has only scratched the surface when it comes to being recognized by the general NHL audience. Criminally underrated while being masked by his big-name counterparts in Pittsburgh these last few seasons, the right-winger has put together a body of work that many teams will no doubt find attractive this summer. While his name isn’t a ‘sexy’ addition for most fans, Hornqvist does all the little things that the Boston faithful would fall in love with. His willingness to shoot, hit, and get into the dirty areas and grind for possession always stood out to me. He’s an agitator on the ice and will draw penalties. He will get under the skin of the defensemen as he sticks his face in every cover-up the opposing goalie is forced into. Hornqvist is a hockey-player’s hockey player if you understand what I mean. His downside? His style of play puts in harm’s way often and at 31 years-old, injuries and general instances of getting banged up are commonplace. With youth behind him to fill gaps, Patric could find a valuable roll on a team that loves leadership and work-ethic.


Michael Grabner, RW

2017-18 Cap Hit: $1,650,000

30 year-old Michael Grabner is about as valuable a bottom-six winger can be in todays NHL. He possess above average speed and a strong level of hockey intelligence. Any coach appreciates his message being enforced night-in, night-out by a respected on-ice leader, and Grabner gives you just that. He’s very useful on the penalty kill, and is reliable in both 5-5 and 4-4 situations. Ultimately a ‘safe’ get for any potential suitor,  I would project him to look at going to a team that can contend quickly for reasonable money rather than go somewhere that a cup may be out of reach for a payday.


John Carlson, D

2017-18 Cap Hit: $3,966,667

Washington can’t let this guy go without a sizable effort to resign, can they? The Cap’s have had a tough stretch for their defensive unit as of late in losing Shattenkirk and Alzner last offseason. Add to that a handful of injury issues they’ve had to deal with this year, and Washington would appear to be borderline desperate to lock down Carlson to stabilize the blue line for a few more cup runs during Ovechkin’s tenure. While amassing above average minutes for a good amount of his season, Carlson has showcased his durability and value for his current team as well as a ton of potential suitors who will no doubt be slapping some chair-tops and waving him over in a few months. No brainer thing to say: Carlson is going to make a ton of money this summer.


Calvin de Haan, D
2017-18 Cap Hit: $3,300,000

This one won’t get many excited but a smart team will take a good look at him come July. Basically sheltered from the league playing in Brooklyn right now, de Haan has been a low-key favorite of the Islanders fans, and for good reason. He’s a worker, though nothing stands out about his play. Keep in mind that sometimes hearing little about a defenseman is a good thing. He keeps mistakes to a minimum, blocks shots, can possess the puck well, and is a reliable piece for any team in need. One reason he’s on this list is because everything you’d want in Nick Holden, who the Bruins recently dealt for, is actually there in de Haan. Additionally, if Boston moves a player like  Brandon Carlo at the deadline for a piece that may not be there next year, de Haan could be looked at to fill a role for the 2018-19 season and thereafter.


Antti Raanta, G

2017-18 Cap Hit: $1,000,000

Raanta is only 29, which is a good age for netminders in terms of experience and longevity for his next suitor. Also at that age teams know what they’re getting when it comes to skill level. Raanta is developed and could be a stable and afforded back-up behind Tuukka Rask. While Arizona is toiling this year, one bright spot has been the consistent play of Raanta. His numbers are among the best of his career and he has shown himself worthy of a job next season for a number of net-needy organizations. This move could be an affordable and sensible way to go should Anton Khudobin’s asking price be too high for Boston to bring him back.

Key Bruins free-agents this offseason include RFA’s: Ryan Spooner, Sean Kuraly, and Austin Czarnik as well as UFA’s: Riley Nash and Tim Schaller. It would be great to see Spooner and Nash back but their play has likely priced themselves out of Boston’s spending intentions. Additionally, while I would personally hate to lose him, Czarnik has doubled his value and deserves a shot as an NHL roster mainstay and unfortunately as things look right now on paper, it may not be in Boston.

In time we will see these storylines develop. For now it’s just all something we need to keep in the back of our minds, although undoubtedly the front office is way ahead of us all.

 

Thomas Nyström, Contributor.
Follow me on Twitter @nahstrom

Sports Spot 2/20/18: Episode 9

By Mike Cratty                                  Twitter: @Mike_Cratty

On Episode 9 of Sports Spot, we talk about the current state of the Boston Bruins plus the Nick Holden trade, as well as the Boston Red Sox as a whole with the addition of J.D. Martinez. Bonus topic: Fergie’s interesting rendition of the National Anthem at the NBA All-Star Game. Hosted by myself, Mike Cratty, as well as my co-host and good friend Ryan Salvaggio.

Link: https://soundcloud.com/user-65308757/sports-spot-feb-20-mixdown

For Bruins talk, listen to the following segments (minutes):

Beginning-3:30

27:45-41:15

Please follow the Sports Spot co-hosts on Twitter:

@Mike_Cratty

@ryan_salvaggio

As well as the Sports Spot Twitter and SoundCloud account for all the latest updates from the world of sports including news, reports, signings, and trades. Including, of course, the Boston Bruins:

@SportsSpotWMCK

We hope you enjoy Sports Spot and listen in the future!

Bruins Make Deal With Rangers, But For What Purpose?

By: Spencer Fascetta                                                           Twitter: @PuckNerdHockey

The Bruins have acquired a player from the New York Rangers.

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John Russell/Getty Images

No, not that one.

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Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Nope, it’s not a forward.

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MSG Photos

Nope, wrong defenseman. This is way more difficult than it should be.

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NY Post/Getty Images

Yeah, I didn’t have them picking up Nick Holden either.

The Boston Bruins acquire defenseman Nick Holden from the New York Rangers, in exchange for defenseman Rob O’Gara and a 2018 3rd Round Draft Pick. Holden, 30, is in the final year of a 3-year contract he signed with the Rangers, at an annual cap hit of $1.65 million per year. Originally an undrafted free agent signing with the Columbus Blue Jackets, he has 12 points in 55 games this season and is coming off a career year of 11 goals, 34 points in 80 games. O’Gara, 24, was a 2011 5th Round Pick of the Bruins and is in the final year of his 2-year entry level contract after a full four years at Yale, where he won the first National Championship in school history. The third-year pro has yet to record a point in 11 career games at the NHL level and has 8 points in 43 games for Providence this season.

But, what are the Bruins getting? Well, Holden is, to put it lightly, a replacement level depth defenseman. This is the best case scenario. While it was unlikely that Rob O’Gara would have passed all of Jakub Zboril, Matt Grzelcyk, Brandon Carlo, Jeremy Lauzon, Urho Vaakanainen, AND Charlie McAvoy, and therefore didn’t really have a place on this team long-term, he still has value as a young, defensively sound defenseman. What the Bruins REALLY are doing is upgrading Paul Postma. As their 8th defenseman. In exchange for a 3rd Rounder and a mid-level prospect.

Don.

Are you out of your mind?

Before everyone jumps down my throat, here is what I am talking about as it relates to Holden. Here is what he looks like from a puck possession standpoint as compared to the 8 defensemen who have seen regular time this year for Boston.

Corsi For Percentages

As you can see, he is the only one of the group who is less than 50%, which means when he is on the ice, the other team possesses the puck more than his team does. Not only is the only one, but he is also the only one by quite a margin. But, as some Holden fans will tell you, you get good offense from him.

Expected Goals For Percentage

Unfortunately, no. Only Adam McQuaid is worse than Holden at producing goals for his team, and they are the only two who, in general, allow more goals against than they generate for per game. While it is unsurprising that McQuaid struggles with this, Holden is clearly less than ideal.Penalty Differential per hour

As a fun aside, I took a peek at his penalty differential per hour – essentially, the number of penalties he takes in comparison to the number he draws per 60 minutes of ice time. While this is the only area where he is demonstrably better than Paul Postma, he is still second worst, and it is a bit concerning that he is below Adam McQuaid and Kevan Miller, two players who see much of their penalty taking come from fisticuffs.

But, it’s ok. We don’t need him to be world breaking, we just need him to fill a spot in the lineup. Right? RIGHT? Anyways, as you can see below, he almost exclusively starts his shifts in his own end. So, it is not encouraging that a player who starts in his own end most of the time cannot move the puck effectively out of his own end.

Zone Start Ratio

In all seriousness, he is the 8th best defenseman on this roster. A 3rd and a decent prospect is a lot to give up for a guy who is going to be your 8th best defenseman. And I could stomach him remaining in that role for the rest of the year, as this is probably a pure rental. But the concerning part is that there is a population of fans who seem to think Nick Holden is a new Top 4 defenseman who will supplant either Torey Krug or Brandon Carlo in that role. I hate to break it to you, but that is definitely not the case. Unfortunately, the price paid by Don Sweeney makes me think he falls into this camp. And if he isn’t, then he gave up a lot of value for a mediocre depth guy. Either way, the Bruins lost this trade. But at least they didn’t give up half of Causeway Street for McDonagh and/or Nash…

Enjoy this? Feel free to check out my other work here on BlackNGoldHockey.com, and please check out my YouTube Channel, PuckNerd, here. Like, share and subscribe! Thanks!

Could The Bruins Be Better Off Pumping The Brakes At The Deadline?

(Photo Credit: Associated Press)

By Mike Cratty                             Twitter: @Mike_Cratty

For the past month or so, there has been no shortage of speculation surrounding the Boston Bruins. Whether it’s about there recent surge over the past 25+ games or trade rumors, the Bruins have sure been in the mill. But what about free agency? Staying put at the deadline may be a smart option if making a splash, to some degree, is in the cards. On the subject of free agency, the Bruins have plenty to work with internally, with $13,266,668 in cap space, as of now (refer to the second image).

(Source: @bruinscapspace on Twitter)

With their internal matters being the main priority, the next step would be to decide how to approach an interesting free-agent pool. There aren’t a ton of huge names in the free-agent market, but a few interesting names. These names stick out to me with the defense and not the forward department. There are names that I like in the forward free-agent pool, but I don’t see a screaming need to add to the forward core in free agency, or at the trade deadline. The Bruins have an absurd amount of capable depth forwards, many on the cusp of NHL readiness. Take Peter Cehlarik for example, or possibly Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson.

Ryan McDonagh has been the main name in trade rumors as of late. Despite the fact he has missed the last six games with an upper-body injury. We’ll have to wait and see if he is the guy, but regardless of where he goes, if anywhere, New York Rangers general manager Jeff Gorton is going to want a haul for him. He has good reason to. McDonagh is a top-pairing caliber defenseman on a pretty reasonable $4.7 million/year contract that is set to expire two summers from now.

Save trade assets including roster players, prospects, and draft picks and head into free agency instead? Control negotiations with your own players and approach the frenzy how you want to. That’s the decision Don Sweeney has to make in the next week.

Although the Bruins’ defensive core has been stellar this season, for the most part, bolstering it within reason is a no-brainer.

Three players that stick out to me on defense in free agency are John Carlson, Calvin de Haan, and John Moore. When considering the free agency route, one needs to account for the current cap situation of the team going forward.

John Carlson’s name is the most tantalizing of the bunch. A player who has been the number one guy for the Washington Capitals for quite some time, Carlson would be a massive addition to the Bruins’ top-four defensive core. Some players would have to be let go, and maybe some contracts would need to be moved to make his contract work, but it’s not out of the realm of possibilities, although complicated. Currently is making $3,966,667 per year, he will be paid handsomely due to the progression of his game, likely in the $6-7.5 million range.

Here are some of the top defensive contracts in the NHL currently: http://www.spotrac.com/nhl/rankings/cap-hit/defenseman/ (Source: www.spotrac.com)

In my eyes, something like Kevin Shattenkirk’s $6,650,000 cap hit would be reasonable. Fairly similar production, outside of this season, similar age as well, both right-shot defensemen. Seems pretty reasonable to me. It’s no secret that free-agents need to be overpaid for a bit at times, especially when you’re on pace for a career year like John Carlson is. In the 2014-2015 season, Carlson finished with 55 points in 82 games, this year, in 58 games, he already has 45 points. If he keeps his pace up, he should break 55 points. Perfect timing for a big-time payday. Seeing him making more than a guy like Kevin Shattenkirk wouldn’t surprise me, approaching $7 million cap territory.

Calvin de Haan and John Moore fly under the radar more than a player of John Carlson’s status as one of the NHL’s better puck-moving defensemen. With the eye test, this is displayed due to their drastically different point outputs. But, all three defensemen possess the capability to move the puck effectively, with Carlson’s ability just leading to more offensive output than the others.

Starting with Calvin de Haan of the New York Islanders, who is set to make $3.3 million this season before he possibly hits the open market. At just 26-years-old, de Haan wields a strong defensive game with good skating ability and smarts. Unfortunately, a season which he could make a case for a nice free-agent payday has been cut short. Calvin de Haan has been out of the Islanders lineup since December 16 and will miss the rest of the season after shoulder surgery. Making his free agency case an interesting one without a huge sample size from a contract year. Before his injury, de Haan played in 33 games, tallying a goal and adding 11 assists, good for 12 points.

John Moore boasts a very similar defensive mold to Calvin de Haan, but with the New Jersey Devils. Keeping a pretty consistent point pace this season, John Moore adds a fresh face to the New Jersey’s defensive core. Currently, with seven goals, 10 assists and 17 points in 58 games, it’s reasonable to think he’ll want a raise in his next contract if he stays on this trajectory. Moore is set to make $1,666,667 before hitting free agency in the summer.

Calvin de Haan and John Moore could be second pairing guys with the Boston Bruins. Pushing Torey Krug for minutes on the left side, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Torey Krug could play on the third pairing with Matt Grzelcyk, Brandon Carlo, Adam McQuaid, or Kevan Miller and hold down top power play minutes. Their styles would fit well in a system implemented by Bruce Cassidy centering in on puck-movement, good skating, and good transition game.

Holding on to trade assets and using cap space instead could be beneficial for the Bruins long-term while holding on to important pieces in case of injury, or moves down the road. There could also be the case where one, multiple, or all of the free-agents mentioned sign elsewhere. What the Bruins decide to do at the trade deadline and beyond will be an intriguing storyline to follow in the future.

Annual Providence Bruins Fan Club Fundraiser

( Above Photo Credit:  The Pink Puck )

By: Mark Allred              Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277

It’s that time of year again to get your tickets to the annual Providence Bruins Fan Club  Fundraiser! This year’s theme is “Peeps For A Purpose” and is an all-you-can-eat dinner at Wright’s Farm Restuarant and Banquet Facility in Hartsville, Rhode Island. Tickets are going fast for the Wednesday, April 11, 2018, event so if you want to dine with some of the Providence Bruins players, please call (401) 426-8277 to get involved in this great event where all proceeds will benefit the Special Olympics of Rhode Island and Hasbro Children’s Hospital.

                           

Check out the flyer below for more information about this great event put on by the volunteers of the Providence Bruins Fan Club and the Providence Bruins Foundation

Support Your Baby B’s!!!

If you’d like to watch tomorrow’s stars today, I highly suggest you take advantage of the cheap tickets and family atmosphere that’s available at every Providence Bruins home game at the Dunkin Donuts Center in Providence,  Rhode Island.  You can get ticket information and other great info by clicking HERE to enter the official Baby B’s website.

Also, if you do happen to go and support the team at the Dunk, be sure to stop by the Providence Bruins Fan Club table behind sections 101 and 102. Fantastic season ticket holders and Fan Club volunteers Jenna Labush, Rhonda Labush, and Steven Labush are always there with other valued members to help with any information and questions. You can also use the address below or visit the Official Fan Club page on the Providence Bruins website by clicking HERE. Follow the Baby B’s Fan Club on Social Media!

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/pbruinsfanclub

Providence Bruins
Fan Club

PO Box 40963
Providence, RI 02940
401.426.8277

BFR1 – Game 56 – Twilight Zone – VAN 6, BOS 1

BFR1 - Game 56 Pic

By: Spencer Fascetta                                                                           Twitter: @PuckNerdHockey

 

Well, that was a poor showing. In one of the longest BFRs of the season, I had a few thoughts on the shocking showings the Bruins have had in the last week, and the asinine trade deadline rumors surrounding the team.

Boston Bruins Focus On Fixing Game After Rough Road Loss

 

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Patrice Bergeron #37 and David Pastrnak #88 of the Boston Bruins celebrate after Bergeron’s goal put the Bruins up 3-1 against the New York Rangers in the second period at Madison Square Garden on February 7, 2018, in New York City.
(Feb. 6, 2018 – Source: Abbie Parr/Getty Images North America)

By: Andrew Thompson                                                                        Twitter: @godwentwhoops

Well, that was an ugly one.  The Boston Bruins have been one of the best teams in the National Hockey League this season.  As good as the B’s have been playing, we all sort of knew that one of those games was going to happen. The Black and Gold got mercilessly drubbed by the Vancouver Canucks 6-1 the other night.

While the Canucks and their fans celebrated like it was game eight of the 2011 Stanley Cup finals (It was seven years ago, and you lost, get over it.), the Bruins knew they’d have to take a step back and analyze exactly what went wrong on Saturday.

The answer was simple. The Bruins defensive game had gotten sloppy. The team had gaps in their coverage. The team seemed a little slow on the draw as well.  When those factors were added to Tuukka Rask having an off night, it led to the B’s giving up four first period goals against Vancouver.

The B’s knew that the team had lost a little polish off their game, but they usually relied on their offensive firepower to get themselves out of trouble.  That also seemed to let them down on Saturday (although not through lack of effort).  So, the Bruins will take this loss on the chin and get back to work.

“It’s been creeping into our game,” said Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron about their lack of defensive effort. “We’ve been getting away from what’s been good to us.” Our defensive zone coverage has been lacking a little lately. We’ve got to tighten that up and yesterday was a perfect example…when you don’t start on time, and you have holes defensively that you don’t take care of, and don’t play the proper way and respect the game plan, that’s what happens.”

Bruins bench boss Bruce Cassidy knows his team will bounce back from this disappointment.  Still, he scheduled a Sunday practice that focused on the B’s remembering their strengths in the defensive zone. While the team didn’t need to go back to the drawing board, they did get a few touch-ups on their three-zone game.

“We built into practice. That’s generally what we do after a video session, where we try to teach or get better in an area, we’ll try to translate it into practice,” said Cassidy on the focus of the B’s Sunday practice. “We play tomorrow, we play Tuesday, so we’ve got to be careful. It was a workday.”

Even with the tough loss, the B’s are still in great shape. They’re one point ahead of the Toronto Maple Leafs for second in the Atlantic with five games in hand. The team will likely make life interesting for Dougie Hamilton and the rest of the Calgary squad as they fight to get themselves back in the win column.