The 2011 Boston Bruins: Where Are They Now?

bostonbruins2011nhlchamps1.jpg

Photo: (Jeff Vinnick / NHL Getty Images)

By: Patrick Donnelly | Follow me on Twitter @PatDonn12

No one will ever forget what the 2010-11 Boston Bruins did for the City of Boston, bringing the Stanley Cup back home for the first time in 39 years and keeping the city’s storied legacy alive. While roster turnover is certainly not unexpected, it is still amazing to see just how much the composition of the Bruins has changed in the eight years since June 15, 2011.

Currently, only six Bruins were on the roster in 2011: Patrice Bergeron, Zdeno Chara, Tuukka Rask, David Krejci, Brad Marchand, and Steven Kampfer (who was technically a “Black Ace” during the Cup run). So, what ever happened to the others, the guys who have since left one way or another?

Tyler Seguin

Getting this one out of the way early; you all know the story. Seguin went on to play two more seasons for the Bruins after winning Lord Stanley as a rookie. However, after some growing pains and a disappointing 2013 season, he was traded to the Dallas Stars along with Rich Peverley and Ryan Button for Loui Eriksson, Reilly Smith, Joe Morrow, and Matt Fraser. Now 27 years-old, Seguin is still one of the key cogs for Dallas as the Stars’ top center.

Rich Peverley

One of the more important players for the Bruins in the 2011 Stanley Cup Final, Peverley was shipped out with Seguin in the aforementioned deal above. The now 36-year-old would only play 62 games for the Stars before a scary incident on the bench in which he collapsed due to an irregular heartbeat during a game versus the Columbus Blue Jackets ended his season. The cardiac issue forced Peverley to hang up the skates, but he is still involved with the Stars as a player development coordinator.

Mark Recchi

Recchi went out on top with three Cups to his name between Pittsburgh, Carolina, and Boston as his final professional game came in that Game Seven in Vancouver. Now 51, Recchi spent a year with the Stars as a consultant in 2013, before returning to the Penguins as a player development coach; he was later named director of player development. He is now an assistant coach to Mike Sullivan. Recchi also co-owns the Kamloops Blazers along with Jarome Iginla, Darryl Sidor, Shane Doan, and Stars owner Tom Galgardi.

Chris Kelly

A foot soldier for the Bruins, Kelly played five more seasons before both sides parted ways after he broke his femur. He signed with his former team, the Ottawa Senators and played one season for the club. After his second stint with the Sens, Kelly signed a professional tryout with the Edmonton Oilers, was not offered a deal, and joined the Belleville Senators, Ottawa’s AHL affiliate, on a PTO. Kelly represented Team Canada at the 2017 Spengler Cup, which they won, and rejoined Belleville before representing Canada as captain at the 2018 Winter Olympics. After the Olympics, the 38-year-old signed with the Anaheim Ducks for the remainder of the season. Now, he is with the Sens once again as a development coach.

Nathan Horton

One of the 2011 Cup run’s heroes, Horton opted to sign with Columbus after the lockout-shortened 2013 campaign. Out until January of 2014 due to shoulder surgery, Horton only suited up in 36 games for the Blue Jackets before he was diagnosed with a degenerative back condition in the lumbar region in October 2014 that ended his season and his career, unofficially. On long-term injured reserve, he was traded to the Maple Leafs due to financial considerations for David Clarkson in 2015. The 33-year-old has yet to play a game for the Leafs and is not expected to play one, although he has taken his physical with the team before each season, failing it each time.

Milan Lucic

“Looch” was traded to the Los Angeles Kings in June of 2015 for Colin Miller, Martin Jones, and the 13th-overall pick (Jakob Zboril). In one season with LA, Lucic scored 20 goals and 55 points, which earned him a seven-year, $42-million deal with the Oilers in the summer of 2016.

Michael Ryder

The winger signed with Dallas in the summer of 2011 after his three-year stint with the Bruins ended with winning the Stanley Cup. During his second year in Dallas in 2013, Ryder was traded to the Montreal Canadiens, where he began his career. After his second run in Montreal, the now 39-year-old signed a two-year deal with the New Jersey Devils, where he finished his career.

Dennis Seidenberg

Seidenberg was bought out by the Bruins at the end of the 2016 campaign after age and tearing both his ACL and MCL in 2013 showed their effects. Now 37 years-old, the German signed a one-year deal with the New York Islanders for the 2016-17 season, and signed another one-year deal for the 2017-18 run. A free agent for most of the 2018-19 season, Seidenberg signed with the Isles in February for the remainder of the 2019 season, but didn’t suit up in a game.

Tomas Kaberle

After arriving to Boston via trade at the deadline in 2011, Kaberle signed for three years with the Hurricanes in the 2011 offseason. In December of 2011, Kaberle was traded to the Habs. In 2013, the Czech native only appeared in 10 games for the Habs and was released via compliance buyout in the off-season. Kaberle signed with his hometown club, HC Kladano–he played there during the 2013 lockout–in September 2013. He was invited to training camp with the Devils in September 2014, but was released before a cup of tea with the Hartford Wolfpack of the AHL; he returned to HC Kladano that season as well. In 2016, Kaberle officially retired.

Andrew Ference

In July 2013, Ference signed with the Oilers, his hometown team, and was named the franchise’s 14th captain. Six games into the 2015-16 campaign, Ference was placed on injured reserve after season-ending hip surgery. In 2016, he announced his retirement before officially retiring in the 2017 offseason once his contract ran out. In 2018, the NHL named Ference its first director of social impact, growth, and fan development; he focuses on grass-roots growth, community development efforts, engaging minority fans and players, and facilitating relations between players and the league.

Johnny Boychuk

Boychuk remained with the Bruins until September 2014 when he became one of the first cap casualties of the Peter Chiarelli era as he was dealt to the New York Islanders for two second-round draft picks–one in 2015 (Brandon Carlo) and the other in 2016 (Ryan Lindgren). The 35-year-old signed a seven-year extension with the Isles in March 2015.

Daniel Paille

After he and the Bruins parted ways in the 2015 offseason, Paille was invited to training camp with the Chicago Blackhawks before joining their AHL-affiliate, the Rockford IceHogs on a PTO. One-third of Boston’s storied “Merlot Line,” Paille signed with the New York Rangers in the 2015-16 season and finished that year bouncing between the Blueshirts and AHL Hartford. Before retiring in 2017, Paille spent one season with Brynas IF of the Swedish Hockey League.

Gregory Campbell

Another third of the “Merlot Line,” Campbell signed with Columbus as a free agent in 2015 after five seasons with the Bruins. “Soupy” was placed on unconditional waivers by the Blue Jackets in December 2016, but was unwilling to play in the organizations minor league system. He officially retired in July 2017.

Adam McQuaid

After nine seasons with the Bruins, McQuaid was traded to the Rangers in September 2018 for Steven Kampfer, a 2019 fourth-rounder, and a conditional seventh-round pick. After 36 games with the Rangers, McQuaid was traded to the Blue Jackets at the deadline as a rental to bolster their depth for the playoffs; he’ll be a free agent this summer.

Shawn Thornton

After the 2013-14 season, the Bruins did not re-sign Thornton, who signed with the Florida Panthers for two years. After his contract ran out in 2016, the third member of the “Merlot Line” signed for one more year. Thornton retired at the end of the 2017 season and joined the Panthers’ front office in a business-related position.

Tim Thomas

A member of Boston hockey lore, Thomas’ 2011 run was one for the ages. After the Bruins were eliminated in the first round of the 2012 playoffs, Thomas announced that he would be taking a break from hockey, sitting out the 2013 season. In February 2013, Thomas was traded to the Islanders for a conditional second-rounder after the Bruins suspended him for not reporting to training camp; he sat out the remainder of his contract. In September 2014, the Panthers invited Thomas to training camp and he signed a one-year deal with the club; he was later traded dealt to Dallas where he finished his career.

“Sheriff” Shane Hnidy

Although his name does not appear on Lord Stanley, Hnidy received a ring and a day with the Cup. His three games in the 2011 campaign were his last in the NHL. Now, he is the color commentator on the Vegas Golden Knights television broadcasts alongside former radio play-by-play man for the Bruins, Dave Goucher.

Three Hometown Heroes Looking To Etch Permanent Place In Bruins History

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Columbus Blue Jackets at Boston Bruins

Photo credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

By Carrie Salls | Look for me on Twitter @nittgrl73

If the Bruins win the Stanley Cup this year, Matt Grzelcyk, Chris Wagner and Charlie Coyle will be the first Massachusetts-born Bruins to have their names inscribed on the coveted hardware since Myles Lane did so in 1929.

Regardless of the outcome of this year’s Cup quest, the three current hometown heroes appear to have already cemented their spots in Boston sports lore. Charlestown, Mass.-native Grzelcyk has been a Bruin the longest of the three, having been drafted by Boston. Wagner, dubbed by teammates as “the Mayor of Walpole,” was signed by the Bruins as a free agent in the summer of 2018, and E. Weymouth’s Coyle was acquired just before the trade deadline in February in a deal that sent Bruins prospect, and another Boston native, Ryan Donato to the Minnesota Wild.

During the regular season, Wagner thrilled fans with his hard-nosed, tough play on a fourth-line that has come up big for the Bs time and again throughout the 2018-2019 campaign. He was rewarded for his efforts when the fans voted him as the recipient of the 7th Player Award at the end of the season.

Wagner was forced to leave game-three of the Eastern Conference Finals after suffering an apparent arm injury on a pivotal shot-block. He has yet to appear in a Cup finals game. His spot has been occupied by Noel Acciari, a native of Johnston, R.I.

During Wednesday’s game, Grzelcyk was hit from behind when retrieving a puck, sending his head into the boards, and he had to be helped off the ice by teammates. Bruins Coach Bruce Cassidy confirmed Thursday that Grzelcyk has been placed in concussion protocol and is officially listed as day-to-day.

Grzelcyk has been lauded by fans and the coaching staff for his toughness and strong performance throughout the playoff run. His best game was highlighted by two goals scored in a Mother’s Day matinee during the ECF.

Coyle has made his presence known on the ice since the playoffs began, as well. His primary contribution has come with healthy points production throughout the post-season.

Although more National Hockey League players still hale from Canada than any other country on the planet, statistics provided by quanthockey.com show that America is closing the nationality gap long-dominated by its neighbor to the north. A total of 435 active players on NHL rosters are Canadian, according to those statistics, followed by 286 Americans.

The Boston Bruins’ current roster is no exception to that trend, as 14 active players are Americans. In fact, only four members of the current Bruins squad are Canadian-born.

In addition, five members of the so-called “Black Aces,” a small group of prospects and players who spent the majority of the season playing for the team’s AHL affiliate in Providence and have been practicing with the NHL club during the deep playoff run, also were born in the United States. Among the Black Aces, Paul Carey, Trent Frederic, Lee Stempniak, Kyle Keyser, and Zane McIntyre were born in the United States.

In addition to Grzelcyk, Wagner, Coyle, and Acciari, U.S.-born Bruins who have appeared in 2019 playoff games include David Backes, Karson Kuhlman, Sean Kuraly, Brandon Carlo, Connor Clifton, Steven Kampfer, Torey Krug, Charlie McAvoy and John Moore. Injured defenseman Kevan Miller, who played college hockey at the University of Vermont, is also American.

Miller and Acciari are not the only current Bruins to have played college hockey in New England. Coyle, Grzelcyk, and McAvoy all attended Boston University. Bruins assistant coaches Jay Pandolfo, and Joe Sacco also played at BU.

Bruins Return to Stanley Cup Final…This Time As Cup Favorites!

( Photo Credit: NHL.com )

By: Jack McCarthy  |  Follow Me On Twitter @73johnnymac  

The Boston Bruins will open the Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on Monday, May 27th against the Western Conference champion St Louis Blues.  The modern Bruins fan has witnessed the 2011 team win the Cup, and now, in 2019, the Bruins’ third Stanley Cup Final appearance in nine seasons.

As everyone waits through the agonizing break until the puck drops to get this series going, I can’t help but notice how things feel a little different this time around.  In stark contrast to both 2011 and 2013, the Bruins enter the 2019 Stanley Cup Final as favorites (-157 currently, according to BetOnline.ag) against the Blues.  In both 2011 and 2013, the Bruins were the underdogs, going up against the NHL’s President Trophy winners from the regular season, upsetting Vancouver in seven games to capture the title in 2011 only to fall to Chicago in six games in 2013.

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Stanley Cup favoritism is not something that the Boston Bruins or their fans are accustomed to.  In fact, the last time the Bruins entered a Stanley Cup Final as the favored team was in 1990 when the Bruins had captured the regular season’s Presidents Trophy and the Eastern Conference championship en route to hosting the Edmonton Oilers for game one at the old Boston Garden.

( Photo Credit: Bruce Bennett Studios/Getty Images )

Boston had finished eleven points ahead of Edmonton in the 1989-90 season and entered the series feeling very confident despite having lost to the Oilers just two seasons prior.  The 1990 Oilers no longer included Wayne Gretzky however, and the Bruins were poised to end their eighteen-year Stanley Cup drought that spring.  Of course, Bruins fans know that Glen Wesley missed an open net in overtime of Game 1, the longest game in Stanley Cup Final history, one that ended off the stick of Petr Klima, late in the third overtime period.  The Bruins would lose the series in five games, but there is no question the result could have been very different had the B’s prevailed in that series-opening game.  The drought would end up reaching 39 years before it ended in Vancouver in 2011.

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There will be no shortage of storylines in this year’s Stanley Cup Final.  From Jordan Binnington’s rookie brilliance and his connection to the Bruins through his loan to Providence last season; to Patrick Maroon trying to win for his hometown Blues; to the Bruins veteran core getting one more crack at Cup glory; to David Backes having the opportunity for a storybook win over his long-time and former team…this rematch of the 1970 Stanley Cup Final should garner plenty of interest and attention from all angles.

The Bruins finished this past regular season ranked third overall in the NHL, effectively tied with second place Calgary on 107 points.  The Blues started 2019 dead last in the NHL on New Year’s Day but banked more points than any other team from that point to the end of the season to not only make the playoffs with 99 points, but to set them up for a deep run that has culminated with their first Stanley Cup Final appearance in 49 years.

Once the puck drops at TD Garden on Monday night, all that favoritism counts for nothing.  This series will feature speed, high-end skill, mobile defenseman and two red-hot goalies that have delivered for their respective teams in these playoffs.  The most important aspect of the Bruins so-called favorite status may well be the home ice advantage they will enjoy, having bested the Blues by eight points in the regular season.  In what may be a long, closely contested series, the Bruins can take some solace knowing that if it comes down to a seventh and deciding game, they will have the support of 17,565 raucous supporters at TD Garden!

Bruins & Canes Share A “Whale” Of A Playoff History!

Image result for bruins canes whalers(Photo Credit: WGME)

By: Evan Michael | Follow me on Twitter @00EvanMichael

Call them the Canes. Call them the Whalers. Call them the Jerks! But, whatever you do, don’t call them inexperienced when it comes to battling the B’s in pivotal playoff match-ups. Hartford-turned-Carolina and Boston have had a healthy history of clashing for the Cup (even regional recognition if you want to really surge up a storm). Let’s take a look back at all the times these two talented teams have met up in the postseason aka the NHL’s most exciting season:

Bruins vs Whalers: 1990

 

Almost ten years after the Hartford Whalers officially became an NHL franchise in 1979 (they were originally the New England Whalers of the defunct WHA), the team finally met the Bruins in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs — or as it was called at the time the Adams Division Semifinals. The series went the distance with the Bruins overcoming what could have been a devastating 3OT game six loss to emerge victorious in game seven. Craig Janney scored what would become the series-clinching GWG in a 3-1 win, with Andy Moog outdueling the inimitable Peter “El Sid” Sidorkiewicz in net.

Image result for bruins whalers 1990(Photo Credit: Pinterest)

Bruins vs Whalers: 1991

 

In a rematch of the 1990 Adams Division Semifinal, the B’s and Whalers again played a hard-fought series. This time, the Bruins’ offense proved just too much to handle for Hartford with the Black N’Gold taking down the White, Green N’Blue in six games. Cam Neely, Ray Bourque and Craig Janney led the way for Boston while Andy Moog proved to be the ultimate puckstopper again between the pipes. These two meetings really showcased how the Bruins’ best players, when playing at their best, could change the course of a game and a series — exactly what will need to happen NOW for Boston to continue its playoff success.

Image result for bruins whalers 1991(Photo Credit: Getty Images)

Bruins vs Hurricanes: 1999

 

When the franchises met for the third time in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, a lot had changed: Hartford had moved to Carolina and became the Hurricanes (the team was playing in Greensboro then before moving to Raleigh); and the NHL had changed its division & conference structure, as well as playoff seeding, so the number three ranked Canes who won the Southeast Division wound up playing the sixth-seeded Bruins from the Northeast Division in the Conference Quarterfinals aka Round One.

Image result for bruins hurricanes 1999The B’s dispatched Carolina in six games with none being as memorable as the 2OT game five affair. Anson Carter scored the game-winner on a beautiful feed from Jumbo Joe Thornton after the B’s rallied from two down in the third period (see above).

Boston would close it out at home (another change as it was The FleetCenter in ’99) for the third consecutive playoff series win between their once-local now coastal rivals.

(Photo Credit: Ebay)

Hurricanes vs Bruins: 2009

 

It’s been exactly a decade since the B’s and Canes last faced off in puckdom’s perennial postseason. And it was a painful one so apologies for the ’09 reminder. Coming off a near President’s Trophy-winning season with 116 points and a Northeast Division Championship, the B’s made quick work of the hated Habs in Round One before moving on to face Carolina in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. The Canes had narrowly defeated the New Jersey Devils in seven games so the match-up heavily favored Boston. It showed in game one but it was all Carolina after that. With the B’s facing a 3-1 series deficit, they routed the Canes at home (now TD Banknorth Garden) before winning game six on the road. That set up a winner-take-all game seven back on home ice before a raucous Gahhhhden crowd (I remember it well). The B’s were trailing 2-1 in the third when old friend Milan Lucic tied things up and sent the game to OT. But that’s when the flukiest of Carolina players scored the flukiest of goals — Scott Walker’s whiffer off a rolling rebound that eluded a tired Tim Thomas — to send the Canes onto the ECF. This was their first playoff series win against Boston in franchise history… and it still stings today!

Image result for bruins hurricanes 2009(Photo Credit: NBC Sports)

Bruins vs Hurricanes: 2019

As I alluded to earlier, in order for the B’s to best the Canes and continue their winning ways this year, their best players — namely Bergeron, Marchand, Krejci, Pastrnak & Rask — will need to keep the momentum going from the Columbus series and produce, produce, produce. If there’s one thing the 2019 Carolina Hurricanes / Hartford Whalers are good at, it’s playing UP to their opponent and, as we’ve seen from recent playoff history, better than their opponent (to wit: the defending Cup Champ Capitals and the energetic Islanders of Brooklyn). BN’G colleague @tkdmaxbjj will have more on what this series could mean for both teams right here so check back in with your Black N’ Gold squad soon — after all, it’s #InOurBlood!

*Bonus B’s/Canes History:

Image result for bruins whalers(Photo Credit: Canes Country)

There are some moments in hockey that even if they’re not from the playoffs, they still belong in a team’s shared history/story together. These are a few of those unforgettable moments!

The Boston Brawl of ’90

Don’t mess with Cam Neely. Or Craig Janney. Or Glen Wesley. Or Chris Nilan. Or Jim Wiemer. Or Lyndon “off the bench” Byers for that matter (yes, stay watching until that moment — don’t let Byers pass you by, dare I say).

The Czerkawski Crosscheck of ’96

Much the same way Bobby Orr got trailblazed after scoring (although this incident was not on nearly as grand or momentous of a stage), one time B’s legend Marius Czerkawski got Czer-cross-checked after his timely tally back in ’96. The B’s didn’t have a lot to fight for during those years so at least they stuck up for each other when the Whale wanted to wallop!

The Shorty Shellacking of ’10

 

I don’t think this will ever happen again in the NHL. And man oh man was it a pleasure to watch (especially after what had happened the year previous): three shorthanded goals in just over a minute on the same Hurricanes powerplay. Talk about being swept away!

Feel free to let us know what YOUR favorite Bruins/Canes/Whalers memories are by commenting below or sharing on social media using the #BruinsFam hashtag!

Help Wanted: Join Our Digital Content Team!

By: Mark Allred  |  Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277

Our Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast and affiliated blackngoldhockey.com website is looking to fill several open positions on our Boston Bruins related digital content team. We are seeking enthusiastic individuals that are team-oriented and willing to participate in group discussions. Applicants don’t need to have sports journalism degrees to join our team, but we do ask that you either have previous writing experience or possess decent punctuation and writing skills. Knowledge of the media program WordPress is preferred but not required. We do offer a training program for those who might not be familiar with WordPress.

We are looking for more contributors in the following areas:

  • National Hockey League Boston Bruins Writers
  • American Hockey League Providence Bruins Writers
  • Premier “AA” ECHL Affiliate Writers
  • Bruins CHL Prospects Writers ( OHL / QMJHL / WHL )
  • Bruins European Prospect Writers ( KHL /  Czech Extraliga / SHL / Finland SM-Liga / German DEL / IIHF World Juniors etc. )
  • Bruins NCAA Prospect Writers ( Men’s Division 1 Only )
  • NWHL Boston Pride Women’s Hockey Writers
  • Bruins Player Analytic Writers ( Corsi / Fenwick / Heat Maps )
  • Bruins Youtube Video Contributors  ( Minimal Writing Required ).
  • Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast Co-Host. We are looking to add another member to our show covering the Providence Bruins and B’s prospects in all developmental leagues around the world. This is a weekly show during the regular season.
  • Editors and Copy Writers Are Needed! These Specialties Come With Reduced Article Publications Per Month. Workload Can Be Discussed During the Interview Process.
  • On-sight reporters for weekly Black N’ Gold video reports from the Warrior Ice Arena in Brighton, Mass. Audio and video equipment will be provided to the right candidates.

If you are interested in any one of the open positions above, please continue forward with our website requirements below to see if you have the time and dedication to be a team member with us.

  • Must have a Twitter account or means of establishing one.
  • Article length is to be 500 words or more unless you have access to the “Breaking News” group where a maximum of 250 words is acceptable to get the news out faster. Deeper In-depth articles are accepted, but please stay under 2500 words because a majority of our readers are viewing from mobile devices
  • From September 1st to when the Boston Bruins regular season and playoffs are over, each member is required to post four articles a month. During the offseason, the required total monthly posts to keep an account with us is two.
  • We have a Slack channel for team communication and activity on there is mandatory, or at least please acknowledge important group announcements. Slack can be viewed via mobile phone app or on any PC.
  • We ask that you be a team player and take a few minutes to support other group members with the kind gesture of sharing everyone’s work on your social media accounts like Facebook and Twitter and so on. Everyone here at BNG is expected to have each other’s backs with the ultimate team support.
  • If an opportunity comes up to attend a Boston Bruins related events as a media member/guest, these privileges will go to those who go above and beyond. To be granted access under the BNG team umbrella, you must be a member that we can count on and show up to these events as a professional and not a fan. Bruins fan attire that will not be acceptable in any media situation includes team jerseys, t-shirts, and so on. Please dress appropriately.
  • Besides original articles, if you happen to get an article idea from any member of “Big Media” you need to give those folks credit by hyperlinking their twitter account when mentioning the author and also hyperlink the article you got the information from. Plagiarizing other media members work without the appropriate mention from where the news came from will result in immediate termination.
  • Last but not least, please write your articles as a professional. These means do not bash any player or the Bruins organization for something that you don’t agree with. Bring respectful angles to your argument instead of this sucks and that player is terrible types of contributions.

If you’ve read through everything above and are interested in applying for one of the many open positions available, please send an email to blackngoldhockeyblog@gmail.com and tell us a little about yourself and provide a writing sample of your previous work if available. We hope to hear from you as we look to grow our team! Take Care and Go, Bruins!

Mark Allred – Founder & CEO

Fanatics Authentic Line Of Boston Bruins Hand Signed Memorabilia

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

By: Mark Allred  |  Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277

If you’re a diehard Boston Bruins fan and either want to start a personal fan cave or already have a shrine that you’d like to add to, please take a look at the fantastic officially licensed items below from the National Hockey League. All items to come with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic.

If you’d like to find other Bruins related items or fan memorabilia from other major sports such as the NBA, MLB, NFL, Nascar, NCAA, and other NHL teams, please click the official Fanatics Banner to the right of our website. All purchases through our connected links from our partnership with the Fanatics company are commission based without any extra charges to the customer. We are simply a middle person looking for alternative ways to cut our Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast and affiliated blackngoldhockey.com which is being viewed now. We thank all who’ve used our connected links in the past and continue to do so. We enjoy what we do and can’t do it without the overwhelming support from our listeners and readers.

Fanatics Shopper Quick Links: Boston Bruins  |  Red Sox  |  Celtics  |  Patriots |  NBA  | MLB  |  NFL  |  Nascar  |  NHL 

(Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Phil Esposito Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 16″ x 20″ White Jersey Skating Vertical Photograph – $79.99

This 16″ x 20″ photograph has been personally hand-signed by Phil Esposito. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Phil Esposito Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 16″ x 20″ White Jersey Skating Horizontal Photograph – $79.99

This 16″ x 20″ photograph has been personally hand-signed by Phil Esposito. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Cam Neely Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 8″ x 10″ Raising Cup Photograph – $79.99

This 8″ x 10″ photograph has been personally hand-signed by Cam Neely. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Cam Neely Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 8″ x 10″ White Jersey Horizontal Skating Photograph – $79.99

This 8″ x 10″ photograph has been personally hand-signed by Cam Neely. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Cam Neely Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 16″ x 20″ Raising Cup Photograph – $89.99

This 16″ x 20″ photograph has been personally hand-signed by Cam Neely. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

Cam Neely Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed Mini Stick with “HOF 2005” Inscription – $149.99

This mini stick has been personally hand-signed by Cam Neely with the inscription “HOF 2005.” It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Gerry Cheevers Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed Vintage Goalie Stick With HOF 85 Inscription – $119.99

This stick has been personally hand-signed by Gerry Cheevers with the inscription “HOF 85.” It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Bobby Orr Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed Logo Hockey Puck – $189.99

This puck has been personally hand-signed by Bobby Orr. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

Gerry Cheevers Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed Logo Puck With HOF 85 Inscription – $44.99

This puck has been personally hand-signed by Gary Cheevers with the inscription “HOF 85.” It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

Phil Esposito Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 90th Anniversary Logo Puck – $69.99

This puck has been personally hand-signed by Phil Esposito. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

David Pastrnak Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 2017-18 SP Authentic #18 Card – $49.99

This highly collectible trading card has been personally hand-signed by David Pastrnak. The card is then encapsulated in a tamper proof acrylic case which also includes an ID tag and hologram to guarantee the authenticity of the item. This will make a great addition to the collection of any true sports fan. Please note that autographs may vary.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Charlie McAvoy Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 2018-19 Upper Deck Series One Hockey #13 Card – $39.99

This highly collectible trading card has been personally hand-signed by Charlie McAvoy. The card is then encapsulated in a tamper proof acrylic case which also includes an ID tag and hologram to guarantee the authenticity of the item. This will make a great addition to the collection of any true sports fan. Please note that autographs may vary.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Cam Neely Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 2011 Stanley Cup Champions Logo Hockey Puck – $79.99

This puck has been personally hand-signed by Cam Neely. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Gerry Cheevers Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed Mini Goalie Mask with “HOF 85” Inscription – $69.99

This goalie mask has been personally hand-signed by Gerry Cheevers with the inscription “HOF 85.” It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

Cam Neely Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed Black Mitchell & Ness Jersey – $499.99

This jersey has been personally hand-signed by Cam Neely. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Brandon Carlo Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 2018-19 Upper Deck Series One Hockey #17 Card – $19.99

This highly collectible trading card has been personally hand-signed by Brandon Carlo. The card is then encapsulated in a tamper proof acrylic case which also includes an ID tag and hologram to guarantee the authenticity of the item. This will make a great addition to the collection of any true sports fan. Please note that autographs may vary.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Charlie McAvoy Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed Deluxe Tall Hockey Puck Case – $99.99

This puck has been personally hand-signed by Charlie McAvoy. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud. Each case is made of 1/8” thick acrylic and features a black acrylic base. It has a clear acrylic removable lid engraved with the team logo and a collage of images. This product is officially licensed by the National Hockey League. The display case measures 10” x 5” x 5.5.”

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

David Pastrnak Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Deluxe Framed Autographed 16″ x 20″ Black Jersey Shooting Photograph – $249.99

This 16” x 20” photograph has been personally hand-signed by David Pastrnak. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud. It measures 26.5” x 27.5” and comes ready to hang in any home or office.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

David Pastrnak Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Deluxe Framed Autographed Black Adidas Authentic Jersey – $637.49

This jersey has been personally hand-signed by David Pastrnak. Each framed jersey comes double matted in a black wood fame, has two photos, and has two engraved team logos. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud. It measures 36” x 44” x 2” and comes ready to hang in your home or office.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

David Pastrnak Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 16″ x 20″ Goal vs. Winnipeg Jets Photograph – $59.99

This 16″ x 20″ photograph has been personally hand-signed by David Pastrnak. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

David Pastrnak Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed Official Game Puck – $59.99

This hockey puck has been personally hand-signed by David Pastrnak. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Charlie McAvoy Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 16″ x 20″ Goal Celebration Photograph – $52.49

This 16″ x 20″ photograph has been personally hand-signed by Charlie McAvoy. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Charlie McAvoy & David Pastrnak Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 16″ x 20″ Spotlight Photograph – $112.49

This 16″ x 20″ photograph has been personally hand-signed by Charlie McAvoy & David Pastrnak. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Brandon Carlo Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 16″ x 20″ White Jersey Skating with Puck Photograph – $37.49

This 16″ x 20″ photograph has been personally hand-signed by Brandon Carlo. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

( Photo Credit: Fanatics )

Brandon Carlo Boston Bruins Fanatics Authentic Autographed 16″ x 20″ Black Jersey Skating Photograph – $37.49

This 16″ x 20″ photograph has been personally hand-signed by Brandon Carlo. It is officially licensed by the National Hockey League and comes with an individually numbered, tamper-evident hologram from Fanatics Authentic. To ensure authenticity, the hologram can be reviewed online. This process helps to ensure that the product purchased is authentic and eliminates any possibility of duplication or fraud.

Has Toronto Overtaken Montreal As The Bruins’ Biggest Rival?

( Photo Credit: Charles Krupa/AP Photo )

By: Jack McCarthy  |  Follow Me On Twitter @73johnnymac

Bruins vs. Canadiens Rivalry

The Boston Bruins have enjoyed a long and storied rivalry with the Montreal Canadiens, long considered their fiercest rival.  The rivalry dates back to December of 1924 and has seen the teams meet in 923 regular season games as well as 177 playoff games.  The animosity that has existed for almost a century including an NHL record 34 playoff meetings has lifted the Bruins-Canadiens rivalry into the upper echelon of the all-time great rivalries in sport.  Think Yankees-Red Sox, Celtics-Lakers, Manchester United-Liverpool.

Montreal has held the upper hand over the Bruins for much of their history.  Bruins fans growing up watching the Bruins in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s were particularly frustrated as Montreal won 18 consecutive playoff series over the B’s between 1946 and 1987.  The streak was finally snapped when the Bruins defeated Montreal 4-1 at the Forum on April 26th, 1988.  The records have been much more even since the streak ended, the Bruins winning 7 of the last 12 series between the two clubs.

The rivalry has been fueled by frequency, both regular-season meetings as divisional opponents and through frequent playoff matchups  Classic games such as Game 7 of the 1979 Stanley Cup Semi-Finals, better known as the Don Cherry, too many men game, to Mats Naslund’s game 5 dagger with 51 seconds remaining to give Montreal a 1-0 victory and a 3-2 series win in their 1985 Adams Division semi-final.  More recently, Nathan Horton’s game 7, overtime, series clinching goal which propelled the Bruins on their path to winning the 2011 Stanley Cup Championship stands out as a game that produced the highest of highs and the lowest of lows for the respective fan bases.

Bruins vs. Maple Leafs Rivalry

As the Bruins prepare to do battle with the Toronto Maple Leafs for the second consecutive opening round, and third time in 6 seasons, the question begs, has Toronto become a bigger rival than the Canadiens?

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The Bruins and Maple Leafs also have a long history.  The teams first met in the 1924-25 season and have faced off 750 times in the regular season as well as 76 times in the playoffs.  The Bruins and Leafs have not played as frequently as the Bruins and Canadiens, including over a hundred fewer playoff games, as Toronto resided in the Western Conference prior to the 1998-99 season.  In all, the current series marks the 16th all time playoff match-up between the Bruins and Maple Leafs with Toronto holding an 8-7 advantage.  The Bruins however, have won the last 5-playoff meetings. Toronto’s last playoff victory over the Bruins was in the 1958-59 season.

Toronto, as we know, is a hockey mad city, the self-proclaimed centre of the hockey universe.  It is also a city whose beloved Leafs have been deprived of playoff success for more than a generation.  It last paraded Lord Stanley’s silverware in 1967.  There are a few factors that have intensified the Bruins and Leafs rivalry over the past decade.

The first significant event that began to bring this rivalry to life was the Phil Kessel trade on the eve of the 2009-10 season.  Kessel was traded to Toronto for a package of draft picks and then the Maple Leafs proceeded to have a couple of poor seasons allowing the Bruins to draft Tyler Seguin in 2010 and Dougie Hamilton in 2011.  It became obvious fairly early on that the Bruins would benefit from that trade and when the Leafs visited the Bruins in Kessel’s return to Boston in December, 2009, the B’s faithful packed the Garden.  That game marked the beginning of a sell-out streak that is now approaching 10 years for the Bruins.

The next, and perhaps biggest contributing factor was the epic Bruins comeback against the Leafs in the first round of the 2013 playoffs.  Toronto led Boston 4-1 early in the third period of game 7, before Boston staged one of the most memorable comebacks in the history the Stanley Cup Playoffs.  The Bruins became the first NHL team to win a game 7 after trailing by three goals in the third period, winning 5-4 in overtime.  Combined with last seasons’ seven game opening round series, also going the Bruins way in a third period comeback, the rivalry is alive and well.

The question is, has the rivalry with Toronto overtaken that with Montreal for the Bruins and their fans?  The answer depends entirely on whom you talk to.  Arguably, Boston and Toronto has become the ultimate rivalry for a new generation of hockey fans, those not old enough to recall Joe Thornton in the black and gold or Mats Sundin in the blue and white.  Those of us who are a little longer in the tooth however, likely still hold just a little bit more disdain for the Canadiens than we do the Leafs.  That said, the Canadiens had better hurry up and make their way back into the playoffs, after all, with every new chapter the Bruins and Leafs write, the gap is closing.

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Point(s) Taken: New Way To Look At Bruins Recent Draft History

Image result for boston bruins draft(Photo Credit: USA Today Sports)

By: Evan Michael | Follow me on Twitter @00EvanMichael

With all the recent hubbub in the Hub of Hockey on how the Bruins’ youth movement is moving forward (or backward?), especially considering the season-long influx of Providence talent being showcased in Beantown, I thought the timing of a recent article from The Athletic concerning Boston’s recent draft history was quite interesting, fortuitous, and even eye-opening. Here’s the tweet that proved to be a head-turner/knee-jerker upon seeing it — then reading it:

So, the Bruins’ draft picks in the 21st century thus far have produced the most points out of every NHL franchise? Let me cue a universal Black N’ Gold reaction:

Image result for bruins gif really?(GIF: NHL.com)

“Huh?” is exactly right. But, then I started thinking about it… or more accurately more astute journalistic minds starting thinking about it, and commenting on my social media about it, which in turn turned my thoughts about it to have an about face.

A valid point, indeed! Sure, the B’s have seen some of their top draft picks since 2003 — the first year of this draft study — score the majority of their NHL points for another franchise, namely Phil we’re-no-longer-thrilled Kessel & Tyler traded-too-soon Seguin. But, it’s still pretty impressive when you actually sit back and reflect on it, especially considering just how mercilessly the city, the media and the fans scrutinized Boston’s 21st-century GM’s for their lack of “draft success” on the whole (yes, we’re referring to you Mike O’Connell and Peter Chiarelli — and to more recent effect Dealin’ Donny Sweeney).

 

Yet, for all the “misses” over the last sixteen years for the Bruins (let’s not even bring up one name from 2007, where a combined 6 draftees combined for 5 career NHL points), there are some names that will forever make the aforementioned points breakdown truly worthwhile. And here they are, ranked in descending order, based on how many points they’ve banked for the B’s (and still CONTINUE to produce for them):

David Pastrnak – 280 Points (2014)

Image result for bruins draft david pastrnak (Photo Credit: FanSided)

To order up a serving of “Pasta” every time No. 88 scores a goal or notches an assist would be akin to heart failure. Thankfully, the deliciously nicknamed David Pastrnak impacts our ticker in many other ways — specifically, making it race with excitement & adrenaline whenever he touches the puck or skillfully skates around a deft defender. To wit: the B’s most recent “W” against the Rangers in which he had as many points as the number one star credit he was given postgame. Love or hate the recently unemployed “Chia” pet up in Edmonton, but you’ve got to give him credit (or at least his scouting team) for Pasta. Let’s keep those 5-point games on the menu!

Brad Marchand – 556 Points (2006)

He’s the most productive pest in modern-day NHL history and he’s as big of a character as you’ll ever find in B’s history — and that’s saying something! He’s Brad Marchand and he’s only just begun, to paraphrase a Carpenter’s classic (not to be confused with former Bruin Bobby Carpenter–another point-filled pugilist). And to think both Kessel and Milan Lucic preceded him in 2006 when interim GM Jeff Gorton was doing his damnedest to pry Nicklas Backstrom away from the Caps for every pick the B’s had! Would “Marchy” have been on that potential list? Who bleepin’ cares now is what I say. And to think… Twitter and Instagram weren’t even a part of Marchand’s life yet!!!

David Krejci – 637 Points (2004)

The above video says it all: when you have a highlight reel gone viral because you had the most points in the postseason for your Stanley Cup-winning team, then you deserve plenty an accolade. Ironically, all David Krejci deserves right now is a 2nd-line winger who can consistently score ala David Pastrnak! Or, did we just see that recently? I digress. But, while on the subject of scoring, let’s not overlook just how invaluable the Czech center has been for the B’s since he was drafted more than a decade ago — ironman status included starting last season. Just think: if he keeps producing and playing alongside another popular B’s draft pick (Jake DeBrusk), then this point-filled list is going to need an update real soon!

Patrice Bergeron – 811 Points (2003)

Image result for patrice bergeron bruins draft(Photo Credit: Barstool Sports)

Trying to describe just how much Patrice Bergeron means to the Bruins organization, the franchise, the fandom… well, it’s an impossible task because you literally can’t say enough about him as a player and as a person. Thankfully, BN’G colleague @phonymahoney did that for us shortly after “Bergy” celebrated his 1,000th game in a Bruins’ jersey:

There’s a quiet grace about Patrice Bergeron that makes people forget exactly how good a player he is, and it’s unbelievable how long he’s been an important fixture in the Bruins’ lineup. One of the best players in the world, Bergeron is a member of the Triple Gold Club (World Junior Championship, Olympics, and Stanley Cup), and a four-time Selke Trophy winner, as the National Hockey League’s best defensive forward. This is a player who is so consistently effective night in and night out, that the only reason any of the milestones he’s achieved as a Bruin have been remotely surprising is because it’s so easy to forget he’s been with the team for 15 years.

Not bad for a second round pick sandwiched between Mark Stuart (93 career NHL points) and Masi Marjamaki (goose egg) way back in ’03! And as we just discovered all but a game ago, No. 37 in his 15th season with the B’s just eclipsed yet another earmarked milestone alongside his inspired linemate on this list:

Talk about a solid three years of drafting in the early oughts for the B’s! So, do you now measure the success of the Bruins’ modern draft machine a bit differently considering all of the above? Do also believe the team is only going to add to these impressive totals what with all the young scoring talent yet to emerge (aka on the cusp)? You do! Well, good.

Point taken!

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My Pick for Bruins’ 7th Player Award

carlo

( Photo Credit: NHL.com )

By: Yanni Latzanakis  |  Follow Me On Twitter:  @yanlatz

The NESN’s 7th Player award is presented annually to a player on the Bruins roster who has performed above and beyond expectations this season. The award has been given out since the 1968-69 season when Ed Westfall won the award that season according to Fandom.com.

The award has been given out to Bruins players who have turned into legends. To name a few: Terry O’Reilly, Cam Neely, Barry Pederson, and Rick Middleton. Recently, the award has been given to Bruins players like Tim Thomas, Milan Lucic, David Pastrnak, Tuukka Rask, David Krejci, Brad Marchand, and Charlie McAvoy.

This year, the Bruins have been one of the best teams in the league and one of the most dominant at times. Their dominance has been in part from incredible performances from up and down the lineup. Of course, the Bruins top line made up of Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand, and David Pastrnak is a constant threat night-in-night-out. But, part of the Bruins success comes from unlikely heroes in the forward group, the defensive core, and both goaltenders. Also, a plethora of injuries this year has caused many different players to be called upon through the “next man up” mentality.

 

With the Bruins so successful, we can easily make a case for 4 or 5 players who deserve the 7th Player Award. Jaroslav Halak has been a huge surprise as a strong backup sharing the net with Tuukka Rask. David Krejci has not missed a game this season and is having his second best season based on points with 65 through 76 games. Chris Wagner and Sean Kuraly could also be in the conversation who have both become fan favorites in the bottom 6.

My pick, however, is Brandon Carlo. In his third season, he has been a big part of the Bruins success this season. He has not done it in a flashy way though. He has been doing the right things in the defensive zone and neutral zone and at times jumped in the offense. He might not be the clear-cut frontrunner for the player who has gone above and beyond this season because his numbers are not outstanding. But, if you watch Brandon Carlo play on a nightly basis, his shutdown play can’t be missed. There have been so many times this year where I have said to myself “wow, Brandon Carlo has really stepped it up this season.”

Carlo has had a couple of good seasons before this one but nothing too incredible. He hit a couple bumps in the road towards the ends of the last two seasons. On April 8, 2017, Carlo suffered a concussion after a collision with Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin. This knocked him out for the playoffs as he missed all 6 games against the Senators in the 2017 post-season. Right before the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Carlo suffered a broken fibula in the third period of a game against the Florida Panthers. For the second straight season, Carlo would miss the entire playoffs.

These injuries have definitely hurt the Bruins defense in the playoffs and have set back Carlo’s development into a top-tier defenseman. This season, he has come back from the injuries stronger, better, and more confident. He is making the right plays and using his size to eliminate opponent scoring chances. But it’s not just his defensive abilities. He also has the awareness and confidence to jump into the offensive rush at the right times and contribute to scoring chances in the attacking zone.

 

Carlo is averaging just about 21 minutes of ice time this season. He has scored two goals and six assists for eight points this season while also compiling a +18 rating. His hockey IQ and his defensive awareness has made him into a top shut down defenseman for the Bruins who is really growing into his top-four role for the B’s. He has been arguably the most consistent Bruin this season. He did miss a few games earlier this season but has not let it hinder his play or his confidence.

If Brandon Carlo stays healthy for the Bruins throughout the playoffs, it will be huge for the team defense in their quest for the Stanley Cup. Whether Carlo wins the 7th Player award or not, he is still a huge force for the Bruins this season and is vital for the Bruins defense to combat the high-flying Maple Leaf offense that the Bruins will almost certainly face in the first round. Either way, the Bruins have multiple candidates for the 7th Player Award which is a great thing, and any of those candidates can take home the hardware.

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A Look At Bruins Captain Zdeno Chara On His 42nd Birthday

( Photo Credit: NHL.com )

By: Yanni Latzanakis  |  Follow Me On Twitter:  @yanlatz

The Bruins team is full of wise, experienced veterans in their lineup and Zdeno Chara is probably the wisest and most experienced of them. On Monday, March 18, Chara turned 42 and continues to lead the Bruins with no end in sight to his outstanding career in the NHL.

At Monday’s practice at Warrior Ice Arena, the team brought Chara a birthday cake and sang him Happy Birthday. Although he might not have eaten it, the gesture was fun and thoughtful of the Bruins coaches, players, and management for one of the greatest Bruin of all time.

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Zdeno Chara was born on March 18, 1977, in Trencin, Czechoslovakia. He was originally persuaded by many in his home country to play basketball because of his height. However, he continued playing hockey and was drafted in the third round 56th overall by the New York Islanders in the 1996 NHL Entry Draft in St. Louis.

Chara spent his first year in North America in the WHL with the Prince George Cougars playing close to 50 games. The following season he split time between the Islanders squad and the then Kentucky Thoroughblades of the American Hockey League. Then, ironically, before he came to the Bruins, he spent time in Lowell, Massachusetts playing for the Lowell Lock Monsters, who was the New York Islanders AHL affiliate at the time during the 1998-1999 season.

After 4 seasons on Long Island and 4 seasons with the Ottawa Senators, Chara signed a five-year, $37.5 million contract with the Bruins on July 1, 2006, and was also named the team captain.

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Standing at 6 foot 9 inches tall, Chara is the tallest player to ever play in the National Hockey League and has yet to give up that title. Much like his body type, his play on the ice is monstrous. Throughout his career with the Bruins, he has been a strong, shut-down defenseman that can occasionally put the puck in the net with his record-breaking 108.8 mph slap shot. His dominant play has always given his coaches the confidence to play him against the league’s top lines and top players. He averages 24:20 time-on-ice for his career and even this season, at age 42, he is averaging 21:02 time-on-ice for the Bruins defense. From his shutdown play to versatility on the ice, Chara achieved the leagues highest defenseman honor with the Norris Trophy as the NHL’s best d-man in 2008-2009. Chara also was an integral part of the Bruins bringing Boston its first Stanley Cup in nearly 40 years when Chara lifted the Cup the highest it had ever been lifted in 2011.

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Zdeno Chara has just turned 42 years old, and many fans have criticized him for his play in the past three years or more. Although he will never be as dominant as he was earlier in his career, he is still a force on the Bruins blue-line. Just one part of his importance with the Bruins for the rest of his career will be his mentorship for young Bruins defenseman. When Brandon Carlo stepped into the league in the 2016-2017 season, he was paired up with Chara for most of his rookie year, and now we have seen Carlo be one of the Bruins best defenseman this year. We have also seen Chara paired up with Charlie McAvoy as he was transitioning from College hockey to the big leagues and both have learned valuable on and off ice lessons from Big Zee. He knows what it takes to win mentally and physically and how to keep his body healthy to continue to perform at a high-level night in night out in which he can teach young defenseman valuable lessons.

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No doubt that Chara is headed to the Hockey Hall of Fame when he does decide to hang them up, and we could even see #33 hanging from the rafters at TD Garden. Chara is one of the most influential pieces for the Bruins this season and postseason both on and off the ice and has proven to be a fierce competitor who has put his blood, sweat, and tears into the spoked B for over a decade. Happy Birthday, Zdeno!

Check out the available tickets from our advertising partner SeatGiant for your next Boston Bruins game. Click the link below, and when purchasing any event ticket, from the NHL, NBA, MLB, NFL to concerts and shows, please use discount code BNGP to save a little money. Thank You!  

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