Report: Former Bruin Noel Acciari to sign with Florida Panthers

acciari

( Photo Credit: NHL.com )

By: Yanni Latzanakis  |  Follow Me On Twitter @yanlatz

According to hockey insider Elliotte Friedman of TSN, now former Boston Bruins forward Noel Acciari is signing with the Florida Panthers for a three-year deal worth five million dollars.

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The tough forward for the Bruins was signed to a two-year entry-level contract as an undrafted free agent in the summer of 2015 after three seasons at Providence College. The 27-year-old from Johnston, Rhode Island played 180 regular season games posting 18 goals and 13 assists for 31 points and a -10 rating. While racking up 80 penalty minutes, Acciari was never afraid to throw his body around and occasionally drop the gloves.

In 35 playoff games, he posted four goals and three assists with a plus-two rating and four penalty minutes.

 

Check out last weeks Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 133 below!

The Boston Bruins and Rick Nash: What Could’ve Been

NHL: Pittsburgh Penguins at Boston Bruins

Photo: (Bob Dechiara/USA Today Sports)

By Patrick Donnelly | Follow me on Twitter @PatDonn12

Earlier today, former Bruin Rick Nash announced his official retirement from the NHL.

You can find Garrett Haydon’s article breaking down the news here.

For context, Nash’s early retirement comes as a result of concussion issues as he suffered one with Boston that he likely came back from too early. A true shame that head injuries forced a player of his caliber out of the game; Nash sat third in active goal leaders with 437 and had 805 points in 1,060 games played.

Looking back at last season and the trade that brought Nash from the New York Rangers to Boston, the Bruins gave up a ton for a player who would only suit up in 11 regular season games and 12 playoff contests. That is not exactly ideal for a player that the Bruins gave up a first round pick and a promising young defenseman (Ryan’s Lindgren) for, among other assets (Ryan Spooner, Matt Beleskey with 50% retained salary, and a seventh rounder).

Nash instantly looked like a perfect fit alongside Jake DeBrusk and David Krejci, filling a hole that had been on Krejci’s right side since Jarome Iginla replaced Nathan Horton for the 2013-14 season. The Brampton, Ontario native played a style that was a perfect compliment to David Krejci’s game, harkening back to the days of the Milan Lucic-Krejci-Horton line.

While Nash was productive for the Bruins with three goals and six points in 11 regular season games to go along with three goals and five points in 12 playoff games, it was a stiff price to pay for a guy who neither stuck around long term nor brought a Stanley Cup. So, aside from a concussion and an embarrassing second-round exit at the hands of a far superior Tampa Bay Lightning squad, things went decently for Nash and the Bruins.

This all brings me to last summer. Personally, I think the Bruins would have been able to keep Nash for more than just a portion of last season. Even Elliotte Friedman said he believes the Bruins really liked their chances to re-sign Nash on 31 Thoughts: The Podcast. After the news broke today, Darren Dreger confirmed that the Bruins were among teams keeping tabs on the power forward:

Things did not end up panning out for the Bruins as Nash decided to forgo free agency to evaluate his future which led to him starting this season without a team and his retirement today.

Ultimately, Nash will be remembered for his contributions with the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Rangers, but it’s not hard to wonder what he and the Bruins could have done for an extended period of time, health permitting.

It’s no secret that Boston has had a gaping hole at second line right wing all season long. It was an issue last season too before the acquisition of Nash, although Ryan Spooner ended up being a fine temporary solution. Had Nash gotten healthy and re-signed in Boston, the 6’4″ 211-pound winger presumably would have picked up right where he left off on the second line, and we wouldn’t be having this season-long conversation.

With this hypothetical second line of DeBrusk-Krejci-Nash, there would not be nearly as much pressure on the first line to drive the offense game in and game out, and the sophomore slumps of Danton Heinen and Ryan Donato wouldn’t be as glaring, but rather much more manageable.

So, if general manager Don Sweeney and Nash had struck a deal to keep the right-winger in Boston, the Bruins would not be forced into a pricey trade market in search of a second line wing, and this team’s secondary scoring issues would not be as pressing of a matter.

More importantly, however, you can’t fault the guy for looking out for his long-term mental health and his family; there are more important things in life than hockey, after all.

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Bruins Prospect Involved In QMJHL Trade

Photo Credit:  NHL.com

By: Mark Allred   |   Follow Me On Twitter @BlackAndGold277

Earlier this week Sportsnet’s Jeff Marek and host of the 31 Thoughts: The Podcast with famed hockey insider Elliotte Friedman mentioned in a tweet below that Boston Bruins 2017 sixth-round selection Cedric Pare was traded from the Saint John Sea Dogs to the Rimouski Oceanic in an offseason QMJHL deal.

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The 6′-2″ 201-pound Quebec Canada native finished his 2017-18 season with 37 points in 60 games played with a Sea Dogs team that came in last place in the league, missing the playoffs after winning the QMJHL Championship and appearing in the famed four-team Memorial Cup Tournament a year earlier. The Sea Dogs selected Pare in the first-round of the QMJHL Entry Draft with the 10th pick and in 129 career games with the team he contributed 18-36-54 numbers.

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Since the Bruins selected Pare in the later rounds of last summers draft festivities from Chicago, Illinois, I’ve had the pleasure of watching about half of his games in the “Q” during the 2017-18 campaign via web stream to get the old “eye-test”. I thought Cedric played well under the circumstances and really thrived in his development with two full seasons of Canadian Junior hockey under his belt.  He may not post a ton of points offensively, but he is a strong depth asset when it comes to his role in the faceoff circle. I like his speed and vision in the 200-foot game and has the ability to play a “Marc Savard” like role on the half-wall on the power play as I’ve seen while getting the trust and top-six minutes from first-year Sea Dogs Head Coach Josh Dixon.

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I reached out to my friend and TV Colour Analyst for Rogers Sports  Craig Eagles for his insight on a professional level as he covered many games that Pare participated in and had the pleasure of getting one-on-one interviews from the young Bruins prospect who’s about to attend his second straight Development Camp at the Warrior Ice Arena in Brighton, Massachusetts. I truly appreciate Craig’s effort and the time he gave to educate my readers and those interested in what type of player Cedric is below and hope you enjoy his insight.

Pare is coming off a break out season with the rebuilding Saint John Sea Dogs of the QMJHL. The nineteen-year-old center amassed 37 points (13 goals 24 assists) in 60 games.

After the Sea Dogs traded 2018 NHL Draft Prospect Joe Veleno to the Drummondville Voltigeurs in December, Pare assumed the teams top center duties and excelled in that role-playing in every situation for rookie Head Coach Josh Dixon’s squad. “As a number one center in this league has made him an integral part of our team, a sought after player in the league and pro prospect who is trending in the right direction,” said Dixon of Pare’s performance this season. Pare continues to take pride in the full 200ft game. Pare believes his game has trended upward ever since attending Bruins Development last August, but still fully understands the developmental process and the extra work required to make the jump to the next level. “This summer, I’ll be focusing on strength and quickness in my off-ice training, while my focus on ice will be around my speed, explosiveness improving my shot and my puck handling skills,” explained Pare.

Pare’s overall progression this season was evident; the two-way center was quicker to loose pucks, won the vast majority of puck battles, and looked more poised and polished in the offensive and defensive zone. His decision-making, grit, compete level and defense first mentality will definitely translate well to the pro game.

Cedric Pare’s work ethic and unwavering commitment to the developmental process is truly remarkable. Pare will fit in very well on a young highly talented Rimouski Oceanic team that will be in the upper echelon of the QMJHL next season. Pare will probably slide into 2nd line center role behind highly touted 2020 NHL Draft Prospect Alexis LaFreniere.