Bruins Marchand Voted Best/Worst Trash Talker in NHL

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PHOTO CREDITS: (cbc.ca)

By: Max Mainville | Check me out on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj

As announced today, March 20th, 2019, the NHL Player’s Association (NHLPA) voted Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand the best and somehow, worst trash talker in the National Hockey League. Over 500 current NHL players participated in the voting process and it is meant to add some fun awards to the league.

The NHLPA Player Poll has been in the running for the past two seasons and it covers a variety of different categories – all of which voted on by the player body. Below are some of the winners from the 2018-19 season.

  • Best Forward – EDM Connor McDavid
  • Best Defenceman – TBL Victor Hedman
  • Best Goalie – MTL Carey Price
  • Best Shot – WSH Alex Ovechkin
  • Best Female Player – CWHL Hilary Knight
  • Best Arena Atmosphere – T-Mobile Arena (Vegas Golden Knights)
  • Best Ice – Bell Centre (Montreal Canadiens)
  • Best Team Mascot – Gritty (Philadelphia Flyers)

And many more. For a full list of all the winners – CLICK HERE.

Back to Boston – Brad Marchand took home two winning awards from this voting event. Marchand won the best trash talker, earning 21.3% of the votes, beating out Drew Doughty (11.8%), Ryan Reaves (5.5%), Claude Giroux (4.8%) and Nick Cousins (3.3%). Somehow, Marchand also won the complete opposite of that award – the worst trash talker in the league, receiving 12.5% of the votes, ahead of Antoine Roussel (5.5%), P.K. Subban (5.1%), Nick Cousins (4.7%), and Brendan Lemieux (3.5%).

We all have a good idea on what exactly goes on the ice, even though we don’t get the mics on the players for every game. Although, that would be an interesting addition to the sport. Nonetheless, Marchand seems to be in the thick of things with words flying from his lips to the biggest or smallest of players in the league today. Brad has used this asset for exactly that – an asset.

In a meaningful game for a playoff position or a game against a heated rival like the Canadiens, Maple Leafs, Flyers, etc., Marchand is able to stir the pot and get under the opposing team’s skin – hoping to get them off their game. In the past, Marchand has not been great with keeping this contained, as suspensions and fines, (with many, many warnings), have piled up. This season, however, the 30-year-old Marchand has not, (*knock on wood*), been handed a single suspension – not one and has gone on to set a new career-high in points.

Funny enough, Brad Marchand is not only good (or bad) at trash talking his opponents, but he has a fun time poking fun at fellow Bruin teammates. Bruins defenseman Torey Krug is one of Marchand’s main guys to have a little fun with on social media, especially on Twitter. Brad likes to make fun of Krug’s height which ironically, is the same as Marchand according to Hockey Reference. Here are a few of those gems.

Don’t worry though, Krug has had his fair share to return to Marchand on Twitter.

The friendly fire between Krug and Marchand is just a testament to how close this team has become over the past few years of success and even failure. Just this little back and forth banter between two of the most important players on the team right now shows that this team is more like a family and that is crucial come playoff time.

Aside from Marchand’s dual awards, the Bruins were in the running for a couple other ones as well, but just fell short. Forward Patrice Bergeron received 9.2% of the votes for the most difficult player to play against, finishing third behind McDavid (30.9%) and Crosby (16.0%). That’s not it as Bergeron was also voted 4th in the “Player You Would Start a Franchise With”, getting 1.7% of the votes for him, behind McDavid (60%), Crosby (18.5%) and Matthews (4.3%).

With the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs right around the corner, it is a nice little reminder that the players do enjoy their share of fun and games in these final few weeks of the regular season. Were these awards correct in your eyes or did the players get something wrong? Let me know on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj!

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Game Preview: Bruins vs Islanders

Related image(Photo Credits: Empire Mine Craft)

By: Liz Rizzo | Follow me on Twitter @pastagrl88

The Boston Bruins travel to Long Island to square off against the New York Islanders, amid some positive reports that superstar right-winger David Pastrnak may return to the lineup this week. After an emotional overtime win over the Columbus Blue Jackets, (with some fired-up encouraging words from MMA star Conor McGregor), the Bruins snapped their three-game losing skid. With that win, Boston will be looking to continue to carry over that emotion in tonight’s match-up at the Nassau Coliseum.

GETTING THEIR GROOVE BACK

Despite having dropped their last three games, the boys in Black and Gold quickly jumped back into their regular form with Brad Marchand netting the winning OT goal. As the regular season winds down with only 10 games left to play, the Bruins will continue to rack up the points and widen the gap between themselves and the Toronto Maple Leafs (who have lost their last few games). The Bruins are now 43-20-9 are still in second place in the the Atlantic Division  and are now third in the league, trailing Calgary.

At this morning’s skate,  Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy  updated the media on the possible return of Pastrnak:

“Not saying that he will (play), but he’ll make that decision in conjunction with the medical staff as early as (Tuesday) after morning skate. I would assume he’ll be a game-time decision…I suspect if he doesn’t play (Tuesday) that Thursday will be a real good day.”

If Pastrnak does return, it’ll be an adjustment for the winger. Since his injury was an upper-extremity, the 22-year-old Czech has been able to skate thus keeping his legs fresh. Even with the injury, Pastrnak is now tied with Brad Marchand for most goals at 31.  Marchand, for his part, has stepped his game tremendously alongside his linemate Patrice Bergeron. He leads the team with 56 assist and also leads in points (87). Another milestone for the Bruins; Captain  Zdeno Chara is one goal away from reaching the 200 career goal mark.

In other updates, injured defenseman Torey Krug was also seen skating at this morning’s optional pre-game skate in a red non-contact jersey. Kevan Miller, Matt Grzelcyk and Marcus Johansson did not travel with the team. Jake DeBrusk was reportedly not on the ice and in a camwalker boot. Expect Tuukka Rask in net tonight and has a 24-10-5 record with a 2.45 goals against average and a .916 save percentage.

Related image(Photo Credits: Fansided: Eyes On Isles)

SURGING ISLES

In their third meeting against the Islanders, the Bruins have won both previous games. The last time these two teams met was on February 5th  with Boston winning 3-1, snapping the Isles eight-game point winning streak.  New York hasn’t beaten the Bruins at home since 2013. With a recent 3-2 overtime win over the Minnesota Wild, the Isles are now tied with the Washington Capitals for first in the Metro Division at 91 points. The Islanders lead the league in goals against per game with a 2.33 average per game and under head coach Barry Trotz, have surged to a Playoff position.

Image result for new york islanders vs boston bruins(Photo Credits: Shutterstock)

On the injury front, center Casey Cizikas has been nursing a lower-body injury and will be a game-time decision for tonight. Former Bruins Johnny Boychuk will be a out for tonight’s game. Expect Robin Lehner in net tonight for the Isles. The 27 year-old goaltender has record of 20-11-5 with a goals against average of 2.19 and a save percentage of .927. Forward Anders Lee has netted  a goal in four consecutive games and leads the team with 27 goals.  Center Matt Barzal leads the team with 41 assists and 58 points.

WHEN TO WATCH: Tonight with puck drop at 7:00P PM- NYCB Live/Nassau Coliseum

WHERE TO WATCH: MSG+, NESN

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Bruins Game 71 Preview: Winnipeg Jets

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PHOTO CREDITS: (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

By: Max Mainville | Check me out on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj 

Following an incredible point streak, the Bruins are entering tonight’s game against the Jets with two straight regulation losses – to the Pittsburgh Penguins and Columbus Blue Jackets. On Tuesday, March 12th, the Bruins fell to the Blue Jackets by a final score of 7-4. Boston was at one point, down 5-1, but made an effort to come back, making it 5-4 before Columbus added two more to seal the deal. The Bruins are four points ahead of the Toronto Maple Leafs for second in the Atlantic with 12 games remaining.

The Winnipeg Jets are in a tight battle right now for the top spot in the Central Division. The Jets hold a mere one point advantage on the Nashville Predators with three games in hand, but Winnipeg does have three more regulation-plus-overtime wins already in the bank. Winnipeg is coming into the game losers of their last two and are 4-6-0 in their last ten games.

Starting Goaltenders:

BOS: Tuukka Rask 24-9-5 2.41 GAA .918 SV% Last Game: 19 Saves in 7-4 Loss to CBJ

WPG: Connor Hellebuyck 28-20-2 3.01 GAA .909 SV% Last Game: 31 Saves in 5-4 Loss to SJS

Who’s Hot

Even if the Bruins are losing, Brad Marchand has been consistently dominating in 2018-19 and lately, that has been on display more than ever. Marchand is riding high on an eight-game point streak with three of them being three-point outings. Against Columbus, Marchand scored his 29th and 30th goal of the season, reaching the 30-goal mark for the fourth straight season. Marchand also matched his career-high in points (85) doing so in 69 games.

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PHOTO CREDITS: (Sportsnet.ca)

Blake Wheeler has sixteen points in his last ten games. That usually means that you’re having yourself a solid stretch and an even more solid season – which he has. Wheeler has 19-65-84 numbers in 69 games for the Jets this season, only eight points away from breaking his career-high 91 points that he set in the 2017-18 season. Wheeler not only leads his team in points but is a crucial leader in the locker room for the younger players on the roster.

Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand are almost always together in something, and they are two of the hottest players right now for Boston. Bergeron has nine points in his last eight contests and at one stage, had three shorthanded goals in only five games played. Bergeron has continued to be one of the best, if not the best, two-way forward in the National Hockey League and is always a threat to any opposing line.

Who’s Not

Tuukka Rask had an unbelievable stretch from the end of December to the beginning of March, but the Bruins starting goaltender is entering the game in Winnipeg after being pulled from the crease after allowing five goals on 24 shots against. Of course, when that happens, usually the team around him is not great. Rask could have, however, played better and will be expected to do so tonight.

Mark Scheifele is second on the Jets for most points in the ’18/’19 season, but in the last four games, the 25-year-old has zero points and is a -2 rating during that period. Scheifele has been averaging around the 20-minute mark for each of the four games but has not been able to contribute as much offensively as his 75 points suggest he should. With that said, he can find his groove again at any time, and he remains a big threat to the Bruins defense.

Torey Krug is one of the best offensive defencemen in the entire NHL this season, but in the last two games against the Blue Jackets and Penguins combined, Krug has a -8 rating including a terrible -5 night against the Jackets. Krug also only has two assists in the last five, both coming against the Senators on March 9th. With the injuries to the backend, Boston needs him to be better on the defensive end of the puck.

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PHOTO CREDITS: (Michael Tureski/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Patrik Laine is supposed to be one of the top young goal scorers – one that can strike at any moment. While he has shown glimpses of that this year, the Finnish sniper has no goals in the last six games played, even though he has four assists in the same period. Laine has only 29 goals which are still impressive, but will most likely not match his 44 goals from last season and the goals that he has scored, have come in spread out games – proving this long stretch of no goals.

Milestone Watch:

Boston Bruins:

  • D Zdeno Chara is one goal away (199) from 200 career NHL goals
  • F Patrice Bergeron is one point away (799) from 800 career NHL points
  • F Brad Marchand is one shorthanded goal away (25) from passing Rick Middleton (25) for sole possession of most SHG in Bruins history

Winnipeg Jets:

  • F Mark Scheifele is one goal away (145) from passing Vyacheslav Koslov (125) for sole possession of 4th most goals in Jets history
  • F Mark Scheifele is one power-play goal away (36) from passing Andrew Ladd (36) for sole possession of 7th most PPG in Jets history

Bruins vs. Jets Outlook

The Bruins and Jets will meet tonight for the second time this season, and because the two franchises are in opposite conferences, it will also be the final time that these two will play one another in the 2018-19 season. Back on January 29th, the Jets took a 4-3 shootout win over Boston in the TD Garden. Kyle Connor scored two regulation goals and the eventual shootout winner to help lead Winnipeg to the win.

As mentioned earlier, both Boston and Winnipeg are in tight battles for divisional spots as we head closer to the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs later in April. This makes this game all-the-more meaningful as a win, or even just a point could be massive on either end of the ice tonight.

Boston has the 3rd-best power-play (26.2%) and the 9th-best penalty-kill (81.3%) while the Jets have the 4th-best power-play (25.3%) and the 24th-best penalty-kill (79.0%). The specialty teams will most likely be a deciding factor in who wins the game tonight. Below are the projected lines for the B’s. Puck drop is scheduled for 8pm EST from the Bell MTS Place in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

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Bruins A Successful “Social” Bunch

Image result for nhl bruins 2019 team photo(Photo Credit: Fansided)

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

You could call it a “Cult of Personality” — especially if you’re a fan of 80’s rock band Living Colourthat’s successfully surrounding the Boston Bruins right now. And it’s not just how the team is playing on the ice, 19-game point streak records aside. It’s how the players are interacting off the ice (indeed, Behind The B if you will) that’s proof this team is perhaps a bit more socially connected with each other than in year’s past. As a result, it’s very easy to cheer on, root for & enjoy the B’s no matter how you watch or cover them (writer/blogger/fan), especially with the type of special season they’re putting together game after game.

There is just something about this team, indeed. Long gone are the days where the B’s locker room or bench was the only place you’d find teammates complimenting or commiserating with each other. Now, players can keep the playful chirping & chiding going all off-day long thanks to their social media savvy… something we all know can have a devastating impact to team sports if not approached or handled correctly. Thankfully, this current Black N’ Gold group does it just as entertainingly as their on-ice play as of late… and you can best “B”-lieve it’s one of those intangibles bringing the team, the fans & the region together.

Of course, Brad Marchand & Torey Krug have been using Twitter to tease each other mercilessly all season long with truly trolling take-down threads that have caught the eye of ALL hockey fans these past few weeks. In the GenZ/Millennial age of communication, this is camaraderie at its fun-centric finest. But, they’re also recognizing just how impactful a “tweet” or social media message can be to the people who follow them — and what a world of difference a simple response can make, as in the recent case of big B’s fan Jillian Murphy who enjoys throwing shade just like Marchy does:

As NESN recently featured, the B’s social presence is now spilling over onto Instagram, where Marchand and other teammates are making the most of their positive outreach, a move that will undoubtedly lead to comments (and commenters) a-plenty as the playoffs approach and EVERY move the Bruins make will be under the microscope, no matter the platform or platitude. Yet, I like it. I support it. I hope it becomes an insta-hit!

When did many of us realize this B’s team was going to be a “hit”? — and in a way much more meaningful than any inefficient enforcer types? I’d say when we got a peak at the Peaky Blinders from the Winter Classic. There was just something different (in a good way) about how these guys were approaching big games, big moments & big opportunities to showcase their togetherness and team pride.

Image result for boston bruins peaky blinders(Photo Credit: TD Bank)

I don’t think it will, or should, stop for the remainder of the season either. Because as we all have witnessed over the past two decades of Boston sports dominance, there are just some teams that are more magical than others; there are just some fits within a lineup that achieve remarkable results, no matter the level of pressure or passion. And the 2018-2019 Boston Bruins, as successful of a social bunch as their ever was one, are on the verge of being one of those personality-driven teams where the results, like the spotlight, will follow.

And we should all feel pretty good about getting to see it up-close and personal in living (Black N’ Gold) color!

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Bruins Game Recap: Ottawa at Boston, 3/9/19

photo credit: By Matt Stone/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald

By: Mandi Mahoney | Check me out on Twitter @phonymahoney

The Bruins closed out their six game homestand tonight with another last-minute, come-from-behind win, this time against the embattled Ottawa Senators. Their point streak is now at nineteen games, which is second longest in team history, behind only a 23-game streak during the 1940-41 season. This is the first time in their history that they have scored the game winner in the last minute of the third period in consecutive games.

Bruins’ Lineup:

Senators’ Lineup:

First Period:

Other than Lee Stempniak beginning his second tour with the Bruins, the first period was mainly uneventful, and would ultimately remain scoreless. The Bruins outshot the Senators 12-6, and each team went 0-for-2 on the man advantage. Play was pretty sloppy.

Second Period:

Both teams were better and less sloppy in the second period than they had been during the first. The Bruins hit the crossbar, and two posts. At 9:04, Magnus Paajarvi landed in the box after hooking Noel Acciari. On the ensuing power play, Torey Krug set Brad Marchand up for a one-timer, which beat Ottawa goaltender Craig Anderson at 10:11.

Almost immediately afterward, Patrice Bergeron missed the mark on a pass from behind his own goal line. Brady Tkachuk was able to fling the puck to an Jean-Gabriel Pageau in the slot, who beat Tuukka Rask top shelf with a wrist shot. The period would end tied at one goal apiece, with the Bruins outshooting the Sens 14-8.

Third Period:

The third period started off with some sloppy play by the Bruins, followed by Chris Tierney stealing the puck from Brad Marchand in Ottawa’s defensive zone, and beating Patrice Bergeron into the Bruins’ zone. McAvoy forced Tierney toward the left wing, and Tierney was able to get a shot off, which Rask saved. Torey Krug cleaned up the rebound and then made a horrendous turnover, coughing the puck up to Tierney directly to the right of Rask. Tierney was able to move it toward former Boston University Terrier Brady Tkachuk, who beat Rask glove side with a backhand shot at 2:46.

Later, Charlie McAvoy would gain the offensive zone and carry the puck behind the net, dishing it to Torey Krug at the left point. Krug then moved to the right point and let a shot go. Walpole’s own Chris Wagner was battling in front of the net and was able to redirect the shot to beat Anderson to tie the game at 2 goals across the board.

The next half period would be more of the same — sloppy, turnovers, with a back-and-forth rhythm — the Bruins weren’t looking great, but were good enough to get the job done. With 44 seconds left, Danton Heinen shot from just past the hash marks. David Krejci was able to tip the shot in over Anderson’s shoulder, and the Bruins took the 3-2 lead. Luckily, Boston was able to hold on tight for the next 44 seconds, and close out the homestand with another win.

Stars of the game:

1. David Krejci

2. Chris Wagner

3. Brady Tkachuk

Notes:

  • Tuukka Rask has not lost in regulation in 76 days (Carolina On December 23).
  • Defenseman John Moore played in his 500th NHL game tonight.
  • Lee Stempniak was called up from Providence on an emergency basis on Saturday morning.
  • Stempniak and Joakim Nordstrom skated with David Krejci, and it was not optimal.
  • Peter Cehlarik only saw 10 minutes of ice time, which was second to least among Lee Stempniak, ahead of only Lee Stempniak. Cehlarik was better along the boards and drew a penalty in the first period.
  • Zdeno Chara led all Bruins in time on ice, skating for 22:17.
  • The Bruins outshot the Senators 31-19.

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Game Preview: Boston Bruins vs Ottawa Senators

Image result for boston bruins vs ottawa senators

(Photo Credits: The Runner Sport)

By: Liz Rizzo| Follow me on Twitter @pastagrl88

The Boston Bruins are riding high and having fun, as witnessed by their recent stunning comeback win this past Thursday night against Florida. Tonight, the boys in Black and Gold are back at the TD Garden to face the ailing Ottawa Senators, who have been going though a rough patch, amid personnel issues.  On the flip side, Boston have come out on all four cylinders and are looking to extend their game-winning point streak to 19 games.

ROSTER UPDATES

Boston is coming off a dramatic  win over the Florida Panthers with both Matt Grzelcyk and Patrice Bergeron netting goals within seconds of each other late in the third period, making the final score 4-3. The Bruins are now second in both the division and league with a record of 41-17-9. If they win tonight, Boston will have a perfect homestead with a 6-0 record.

Earlier this morning, the team announced the recall of forward Lee Stempniak on an emergency basis. Jake DeBrusk, who has been nursing a lower-body injury, will be out of the lineup tonight: he remains day-to-day.  Marcus Johansson will also be out tonight, along with David Pastrnak and Kevan Miller.

Karson Kuhlman was recalled for that game and has now been assigned back down to Providence.  This morning’s rushes show Stempniak being slotted up on the second line with David Krejci and Joakim Nordstrom. Here were this morning’s practice lines:

Expect red-hot goaltender Tuukka Rask in net tonight and Jaroslav Halak in for tomorrow’s game. With the win against the Panthers, Rask extended his point streak to 18 games with a 15-0-3 record. He now ties with Pete Peeters as one of two goaltenders in NHL history with two career point streaks in 17 or more games. Rask has a record of 23-8-5 with a goals against average of 2.31 and a .921 save percentage.

Related image(Photo Credits: Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

The dynamic duo of Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand has been explosive as of late and with  everyone else on the team contributing, the Bruins are closer to clinching a Playoff spot.  Marchand now leads the team with 53 assist and has 80 points.  David Krejci has also upped his game and is second behind Marchand with 41 assists. Defenseman Torey Krug also finds himself in third with 40 assists and 46 points. Another little footnote: defenseman John Moore will be playing his 500th career game tonight.

OTTAWA

The Senators are coming off a 4-2 loss against the New York Islanders this past Thursday. Ottawa is 1-9 in their last 10 games. Defenseman Thomas Chabot leads the team with 48 points and 35 assists. Left-winger Brady Tkachuk leads the team with 15 goals.

Image result for boston bruins vs ottawa senators

(Photo Credits: Fred Chartrand/The Canadian Press via AP)

Newly acquired forward Brian Gibbons offers a bight spot for the Senators as he has four points in his last five games, while Boston’s Marchand has nine points. Interim head coach Marc Crawford announced that Craig Anderson will be in goal tonight to face the Bruins.  Anderson is now 14-22-4 with a goals against average of 3.54 and a .903 save percentage.

Ottawa is last in the Atlantic Division posting a 23-39-6 record in 68 games and are last in the league with 52 points behind the Los Angeles Kings, who have 56 points. Boston has 91 points.

WHEN TO WATCH: Tonight with puck drop at 7:00 pm at the TD Garden, Boston

WHERE TO WATCH: NESN

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Bruins’ Johansson Sustains Lung Contusion

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photo credit: Getty Images

By: Mandi Mahoney | Check me out on Twitter @phonymahoney

The Boston Bruins announced this evening that Bruins forward Marcus Johansson has sustained a lung contusion. Tuesday night in Boston, the newly acquired Johansson was injured during the first period of a 4-3 win against the Carolina Hurricanes. Johansson collided with Hurricanes wing Micheal Ferland immediately after dishing the puck to linemate Jake DeBrusk. Johansson would not return to the game after the hit.

As it turns out, Johansson was brought to Massachusetts General Hospital, where he was admitted and stayed overnight for observation. The 28-year-old Swede suffered a lung contusion and will be re-evaluated by specialists in a week’s time. Cross your fingers, Bruins fans.

Johansson being sidelined for an extended period would be quite the blow against the Bruins’ postseason aspirations, but given the timeline announced by the team, that likely will not happen. MoJo has a history of concussions — one of them thanks to the antics of new teammate Brad Marchand — so there is almost definitely a feeling of relief in regard to today’s diagnosis.

As for the Bruins’ lineup in Johansson’s absence, expect Slovak wing Peter Cehlarik to continue to play right wing on the second line with David Krejci and Jake DeBrusk. Cehlarik did an admirable job filling in for the injured Johansson for the remainder of the game against Carolina and is the best choice out of the options the Bruins have (Joakim Nordstrom and David Backes) to slide into Johansson’s roster spot.

With any luck, this will only be a temporary setback for Johansson and the Bruins. Acquiring him was a smart trade deadline move on Bruins General Manager Don Sweeney’s part, and he certainly has a lot to offer.  Let’s hope for a smooth recovery and return to the lineup.

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Bruins Game 66 Preview: Carolina Hurricanes

Matt Grzelcyk, Cam Ward, Jaccob Slavin

PHOTO CREDITS: (AP Photo)

By: Max Mainville | Check me out on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj 

Points in sixteen straight games, three game-winning streak. That is the reality for the Boston Bruins ahead of tonight’s game against the Carolina Hurricanes. The Bruins have had support from all four lines, all three defensive lines, and both goalies during this extended streak of wins and points, pushing them to the second Atlantic division spot, only one point ahead of the Maple Leafs.

For Carolina, they too have been on an incredible run as of late. The Hurricanes have boosted themselves out of the wild-card to have the third Metropolitan divisional spot in their possession, only one point ahead of Pittsburgh who is currently in the wild-card. Carolina is riding on a five-game winning streak and are 21-6-1 since December 30th, 2018.

Starting Goaltenders:

BOS: Jaroslav Halak 17-9-4 2.29 GAA .924 SV% Last Game: 19 Saves in 4-1 win vs SJS

CAR: Curtis McElhinney (Likely) 2.24 GAA .923 SV% Last Game: 21 Saves in 5-2 win vs STL

Who’s Hot

Jaroslav Halak will be one of the favorites to win the 2019 NESN 7th Player Award, awarding the Bruin that has exceeded expectations this season and exceed expectations is what he has done. Halak has wins in each of his last four starts, three of which had him stopping thirty or more shots. In the last six games, Jaroslav has a .946 save percentage and has not lost in regulation. He has been a big member to the team, taking off some of the pressure from starting goaltender, Tuukka Rask. Even so much so that there is the chance that Bruce Cassidy runs both Rask and Halak in the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs as fellow BNG writer Evan Michael mentions here.

Sebastian Aho is one of the best young players in the NHL today and he has proven that he should have gone higher than 35th overall in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. Aho leads the Hurricanes this season with 27-46-73 numbers in 65 games this year and he is in the middle of a five-game point streak where he has accumulated six points in that span.

Brad Marchand scored the only goal in the win over the New Jersey Devils on Saturday night, making his 2018-19 season all the better. Marchand leads Boston in points with 24-49-76 numbers in 64 games and is well on the road to surpassing his career-high of 85 points that he reached in each of the last two seasons.

Teuvo Teravainen was once drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks, but was traded to Carolina in 2016 for a 2nd and a 3rd round pick. In response, Teravainen has had a phenomenal season, scoring eighteen goals and a career-high 43 assists for sixty-one points in only 65 games. He will break his career-high of 64 points, a mark he hit last season in a full 82 games. The 24-year-old has nine points in his last five games.

Who’s Not

Trevor van Riemsdyk is not necessarily known as a point-producing defenceman, as he usually gets third-paring minutes on the Carolina blueline, but the 27-year-old has only one point in his last ten games and is still a -4 rating on the season. The Hurricanes would love a higher plus/minus rating for him and more points on the back-end as the battle in the Metro continues.

David Backes is getting time with newly-acquired Charlie Coyle, but the ex-St. Louis Blue has zero points in his last five contests for the B’s and has ten penalty minutes during that time as well. Backes has 5-9-14 numbers in 53 games played in 2018-19 and is not even close to the 14-19-33 totals he had in 57 games last season for Boston.

Michael Ferland was one of the biggest fish in the trade deadline market but for some reason, his play has fallen off. In the past six games, the Swan River, Manitoba, Canada native has only two points – both of which coming on February 26th against the Los Angeles Kings. Ferland has 17-18-35 numbers in fifty-six games during the campaign this season.

Milestone Watch

Boston Bruins:

  • G Jaroslav Halak is one win away (249) from 250 career NHL wins and would tie Johnny Bauer (250) for 54th most wins in NHL history
  • D Zdeno Chara is one goal away (199) from 200 career NHL goals
  • F Brad Marchand is one short-handed goal away (25) from passing Rick Middleton (25) for sole possession of most SHG in Bruins history
  • F Patrice Bergeron is one point away (793) from passing Wayne Cashman (793) for sole possession of 6th most points in Bruins history

Carolina Hurricanes:

  • F Jordan Staal is one point away (499) from 500 career NHL points

Bruins vs Hurricanes Outlook

This is the final game of the season series between the Bruins and Hurricanes, with both teams taking one of the previous two meetings. Back on October 30th, the B’s took a 3-2 win, followed by a Carolina win on December 23rd with the final score being 5-3 Hurricanes. Once again, the Hurricanes will dawn the Hartford Whalers jerseys while the Bruins will wear their 2018-19 road sweaters on home ice.

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PHOTO CREDITS: (Jamie Kellner)

Power-Play Percentage:

BOS: 26.8% – 2nd in NHL

CAR: 17.6% – 21st in NHL

Penalty-Kill Percentage:

BOS: 81.3% – 11th in NHL

CAR: 81.6% – 9th in NHL

Below are the Bruins practice lines from yesterday ahead of tonight’s game. Kevan Miller, Sean Kuraly and David Pastrnak are all out of the lineup.

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!  

Click Here For The Boston Bruins 2018-19 Regular Season Schedule and Ticket Info From SeatGiant.com

Bruins Marchand Continues Dominant Season With ‘Devilish’ Game vs. Devils

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PHOTO CREDITS: (NHL.com)

By: Max Mainville | Check me out on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj 

Brad Marchand has been with the Bruins organization since the 2009-2010 season, following being drafted 71st overall (3rd round) in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. In that time, Marchand has not always been the point-producing scorer that we happen to know him as today.

Marchand started his career in the National Hockey League with only one point in twenty games during the ’09/’10 campaign but returned the following season with twenty-one goals and forty-one points in 77 regular season games. In his first six seasons, Marchand never amassed more than fifty-five points in a season, a mark that he reached back in 2011-12.

Within the 377 regular season games from 2009 to the end of the 2014-15 season, Marchand scored 116 goals and 112 assists for 228 points – not bad, but something that seems odd considering what Marchand has been doing for Boston in the past four seasons. Even at the time, it seemed like Marchand was capable of more because of his performance in the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs, helping the B’s hoist the Stanley Cup with 11-9-19 numbers – including two goals in Game 7 of the Finals against the Vancouver Canucks.

For Brad Marchand, the offence truly started to click 2015-16. The Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada native scored thirty-seven goals that season and a lot of that could be attributed to his chemistry with Patrice Bergeron that had been growing strong over the previous seasons. Bergeron, even to this day, is one of the biggest reasons for the success of Brad Marchand.

Following that 37-24-61 year, Marchand entered the contract negotiation phase of career. Back in September of 2012, Marchand signed a four-year, $18 million contract worth $4,500,000 per season. With one year remaining, Marchand agreed to an eight-year, $49 million deal worth $6,125,000 every season until 2024-2025. Taking a look back on that deal, I and many other hockey fans feel that he could have very well demanded into the eight million range on the skill alone, but the age factor and the love of Boston persuaded him to take a little bit of a pay cut.

Right after signing the contract, Marchand went on to explode for eighty-five points on the final year of the previous contract, proving to all the naysayers that he deserves that long-term commitment. The 2016-17 season was so good for him, that he made it into his first career NHL All-Star Game. The question came up of course though, could he continue that success into the future years or was it a one-time sort of event to hit that point mark?

Well last season, Marchand answered that question by matching that exact point total. While he failed to meet the goal total, Marchand tallied six more assists than the year prior, mainly due to the emergence of young superstar David Pastrnak on the Bruins first-line. It is also fair to note, however, that Marchand scored 34-51-85 numbers in only 68 games.

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PHOTO CREDITS: (Dan Hamilton/USA TODAY Sports Images)

That takes us to this season – the 2018-19 season. Brad Marchand started off the year on a slower pace than in the years prior but that could largely be because of the skill increase of Czech forward David Pastrnak. Pastrnak took the league by storm with his shooting capabilities and the scoring of Marchand kind of went under the radar by other NHL franchises, at least, the fanbases forgot about him.

With that said, Marchand is currently on pace for another career season. After sixty-four games, Marchy is averaging 1.19 points-per-game, currently the second-highest average of his career, behind last year’s effort. Marchand has only missed one game, leaving him the chance to hit 81 games played and with that 1.19 PPG average, Marchand can reach the 94-point mark and become the first Bruin since Marc Savard in 2006-07 (96) to hit ninety points in a single season.

Of course, Brad would have to finish off the season on this pace and avoid missing anymore time from injuries or suspensions. Even then, for him to hit a new career-high of 86 points, he would have to score ten points in the next eighteen games – very possible for Marchand.

He’s on pace to set a new career-high in points, so how exactly is Brad Marchand falling out of the mouths of opposing teams and fanbases, especially on social media platforms? Suspensions, or lack thereof rather. Over the past number of years, Marchand’s name has been on the news headlines for his in-game antics. The dirty hits, the spearing to the groin, and don’t remind me of the whole licking events. However this season, knowing that he may have received his final warning, Marchand has not yet been handed a suspension in the 2018-19 season. *knocks on wood*

Even if he fails to break or even match his personal point record, the fact that he has been able to consistently help the Boston Bruins win games and play well, then that is a win in my books and I’m sure, in a lot of your books as well.

On Saturday, Marchand played in his 666th career NHL regular season game, entering the contest with a combined total of 666 penalty minutes. Who did he happen to be playing against – the New Jersey Devils. I’ll let you put the pieces together from there. Regardless, Brad Marchand is on pace for a career season and without that, the Bruins may not be on a sixteen-game point streak and ahead of the Toronto Maple Leafs. From here on out to the Stanley Cup Playoffs, we can only hope that Marchand’s season continues to build steam.

Marchand and the Bruins look to extend the point streak to seventeen games Tuesday night against the Carolina Hurricanes in the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.

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!  

-> Click Here For The Boston Bruins 2018-19 Regular Season Schedule and Ticket Info From SeatGiant.com <- 

Bruins Post-Game Recap: New Jersey at Boston: 3/2/19

1321351_Devils_Bruins_Hockey_43376.-1024x688Photo Courtesy Of Kennebec Journal

By: Garrett Haydon | Follow Me On Twitter @thesportsguy97

Pre-Game Notes

Arena: TD Garden, Boston, Massachusetts

Home: Boston Bruins (38-17-9)

Away: New Jersey Devils (25-32-8)

Boston’s Lineup

Forwards

Marchand-Bergeron-Heinen

DeBrusk-Krejci-Johansson

Cehlarik-Coyle-Backes

Nordstrom-Acciari-Wagner

Defense

Chara-McAvoy

Carlo-Krug

Grzelcyk-Moore

Goalies

Rask

Halak

New Jersey’s Lineup

Forwards

Bratt-Hischier-Stafford

Agostino-Zajac-Coleman

Pietela-McLeod-Lappin

Yakovlev-Rooney-Anderson

Defense

Greene-Severson

Vatanen-Carrick

Butcher-Santini

Goalies

Blackwood

Schneider

First Period

The Bruins picked up their first power play of the game just 2:23 in as they looked to get off to a fast start. Brad Marchand did just that with a man advantage strike just 14 seconds into the penalty after a great feed from Patrice Bergeron.

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The Bruins looked amped up to start as they manufactured a few scoring chances in the opening moments. Marchand made a great steal in the defensive zone and was hooked on his way to the net, resulting in a penalty shot which was denied by Mackenzie Blackwood.

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The Bruins continued to have solid shifts in the attacking zone which helped them gain an offensive rhythm in the opening period. The Devils found a little possession towards the midway point of the period but weren’t able to find many scoring opportunities. The Bruins third line continued their strong period with another good shift that nearly resulted in the lead being doubled.

The Devils responded with a good shift and got a power play after a slashing call to Brandon Carlo with three minutes left in the period. The Bruins killed off the penalty without yielding any shots and went to the room still up by a goal.

Score: 1-0 Bruins

Second Period

The Bruins picked up right where they left off in the second period with a couple of good shifts by the second and third lines. For the most part however, the B’s were held to the outside and didn’t get many great opportunities like they did in the first period. The Devils had much more possession in the second period but couldn’t do much with it as Tuukka Rask continued to have a quiet night in goal.

Rask made a huge stop on a two on one to keep it a one goal game as the Devils got their best chance of the game. The Devils would pick up their second power play of the game as Peter Cehlarik went to the box with under five minutes to go in the period. The B’s killed the penalty without giving up many significant scoring chances.

The Bruins started to get their legs back in the final moments of the second period as they looked to extend the slim lead. The third line again had a great shift by both Charlie Coyle and Cehlarik were denied in the final seconds of the period.

Score: 1-0 Bruins

Third Period

The fourth line of the Bruins opened the period with a hard, charging shift that nearly resulted in the lead being doubled but Blackwood continued to have a good night to keep it 1-0. The Devils responded with a solid shift but Rask made a big save on a shot from distance by Sami Vatanen to maintain the B’s lead. The Bruins continued their good defensive game with some nice stick play to prevent a couple of New Jersey odd man rushes.

The final period continued to move quickly as neither team found a lot of chances, although the Devils did get a couple chances about midway through the period but Rask denied Jesper Bratt and Drew Stafford in quick succession. The Bruins began to move their legs in the latter half of the final frame and got chances but were still unable to beat Blackwood.

The Devils pulled the goalie with about 1:30 to play, trying to tie the game desperately. The New Jersey rally ultimately fell short as the B’s picked up the win.

Final Score: 1-0 Bruins

Three Stars Of The Game

First Star: Rask. While not incredibly busy, Number 40 looked great in this one and made a couple huge stops as he earned his third shutout of the season.

Second Star: Marchand. In 666th game, Marchand was very solid as he found the back of the net for the only goal of the game.

Third Star: Coyle. The third liner had another good performance as his line continued their solid play as of late.

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!  

Click Here For The Boston Bruins 2018-19 Regular Season Schedule and Ticket Info From SeatGiant.com