Bruins “Serve Up” Pucks & Paddles Event

(Photo Credit: Boston Bruins Foundation)

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

The Boston Bruins “served up” quite the successful charity event in mid-January to kick-start what will undoubtedly be another milestone year of community service and fundraising in 2020.

The third annual Pucks & Paddles event to benefit the Floating Hospital for Children at Tufts Medical Center raised $125,000 after all was said and done, with B’s players partnering up with fans, broadcasters and community members for a competitive single-elimination table tennis (aka ping pong) tournament.

Patrice Bergeron “captained” the always entertaining event with 98.5 The Sports Hub co-sponsoring all the fundraising fun and festivities. Here’s the description from the official Pucks & Paddles page:

“Fans [had] the opportunity to bid for their chance to play ping pong with their favorite Bruins player. The tournament commenced with two select players playing ping pong against two patients from Floating Hospital for Children, followed by a single elimination tournament featuring the players, on air talent and bidders. The rounds advanced to a championship game featuring the final two teams, with a winning tandem being crowned the ping pong fest champions. In addition, the four best Bruins ping pong players participated in a separate informal singles competition to demonstrate their talents to the crowd.”

Bruins prospect Anton Blidh and his partner were crowned “the champions of the event” according to the B’s website, where more than a dozen friendly photos of ping pong prowess and table tennis tenacity are on display.

If you’re wondering how that “whopping $125,000” will benefit local children and families, look no further than this description from the Boston Bruins Foundation:

“Patients from Floating Hospital for Children at Tufts Medical Center are invited to participate in the tournament and proceeds raised from the annual event benefit the hospital and the Boston Bruins Foundation. In 2019, Pucks and Paddles raised a grand total of $120,000. Portions of the money raised goes toward providing extraordinary care and exceptional comfort when families need it most. Floating Hospital for Children knows that helping kids requires cutting-edge research, state of the art facilities, and caregivers who treat all children as if they are their own.”

As expected, the event was a “hit” for area families, fans and local businesses — all benefiting from the B’s consistent commitment to community that will continue to resonate… from pucks to paddles!

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 162 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

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Bruins Post-Game Recap: Boston at Pittsburgh: 1/19/20

Image result for bruins penguins january 16

Photo Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

By Mike Cratty | Follow me on Twitter @Mike_Cratty

Home: Pittsburgh Penguins

Away: Boston Bruins

Boston’s Lineup

Forwards

Marchand – Bergeron – Pastrnak

DeBrusk – Coyle – Bjork

Heinen – Lindholm – Kuhlman

Nordstrom – Kuraly – Wagner

Defense

Chara – McAvoy

Krug – Carlo

Grzelcyk – Moore

Goalies

Halak

Vladar

Pittsburgh’s Lineup

Forwards

McCann – Crosby – Simon

Kahun – Malkin – Rust

Galchenyuk – Agozzino – Hornqvist

Aston-Reese – Blueger – Tanev

Defense

Johnson – Letang

Pettersson – Marino

Riikola – Ruhwedel

Goalies

Murray

Jarry

First Period

Scoring 11 seconds into a game is a good way to make your presence felt. Patrice Bergeron did that, burying his 21st goal of the season. David Pastrnak and Brandon Carlo had the assists on the goal, their 33rd and 11th assists of the season respectively.

Anders Bjork made it 2-0 just a minute and 51 seconds later. With such a fast start, it was apparent early on that the Bruins weren’t totally satisfied with their 4-1 win over the Penguins. As a result, it didn’t take them long to make a statement in enemy territory. Bjork’s eighth goal of the season was assisted by Charlie Coyle (17) and Jake DeBrusk (14).

It continued to be pretty much all Bruins throughout the first period. While Jaroslav Halak made key saves when needed, the way the Bruins controlled the flow of play stood out the most. After two quick goals early on, Pastrnak added his 37th goal of the season to extend the lead to three with 4:53 remaining. Brad Marchand (44) and Torey Krug (27) had the helpers.

Not all was bad for the Penguins, as they managed to get one back thanks to Dominik Simon and a great pass by Sidney Crosby to set him up – making it 3-1 Bruins with 3:26 remaining. Brandon Tanev had a great chance to cut the deficit to one, but Brandon Carlo went all out to thwart the chance.

Teddy Blueger took a late hooking penalty with 1:37 remaining. Although the Bruins failed to score on the power play before the end of the frame, the final 23 seconds of the penalty awaited them to start the second period. The Bruins held a 13-6 shot advantage and won 72 percent of faceoffs.

Score: 3-1 Boston

Second Period

The Penguins wanted an early goal of their own, and they got one. Blueger scored shortly after serving the hooking penalty he took late in the first period. Crosby made another great pass to set it up. A two-goal lead for the Bruins was quickly cut to one just 33 seconds in.

Chris Wagner took an interference penalty at the 12:09 mark of the period. Just 51 seconds later, Marchand and Kris Letang got tied up to Matt Murray’s left and received matching roughing penalties as a result.

After the Blueger goal, it was a battle of wills for the majority of the period. Murray bounced back after a rough first period, and Halak made some timely stops of his own. The Penguins held the advantage in shots at 12-10 and set up what was sure to be an eventful third period. The shots through two periods were 23-18 in favor of the Bruins.

Score: 3-2 Boston

Third Period

Keeping with the trend of eventful starts to each period, Letang went off for elbowing just 20 seconds in. Jack Johnson took advantage of a huge opportunity tied the game with a shorthanded goal. The game was tied with 18:19 remaining and things got a bit chippier as this grudge match rolled on.

The Bruins were generating chances, but weren’t getting results. Murray continued to play very well after a bad first period and the Penguins didn’t relent. Bryan Rust made it four unanswered goals and gave his team the lead with 7:25 remaining in regulation.

Halak was pulled with 2:19 remaining for an extra attacker. While they managed to prevent an empty netter, the Bruins couldn’t tie the game back up. A tripping penalty assessed to Matt Grzelcyk in a successful effort to prevent Tanev from adding an empty netter late was the nail in the coffin in this one. A 14-4 advantage in shots in the final frame wasn’t enough to secure a win. The final shots were 37-22 in their favor. Next up are the Vegas Golden Knights on Tuesday at TD Garden at 7:00 PM ET. The Bruins are 28-10-12 at the 50-game mark on the 2019-2020 season.

Final Score: 4-3 Pittsburgh

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 162 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

Boston Bruins Week In Review Jan 6th-12th

Boston Bruins v New York Islanders

(Photo Credit:Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

By: Lucas Pearson  |  Follow Me On Twitter @LucasPearson_

There we go, THAT’S Bruins hockey. After a brutal stretch of hockey that saw the Bs go 4-5-6, the Black and Gold are back to their winning ways. Here’s everything you missed from this week’s action.

Jan 7 Boston Bruins @ Nashville Predators

The Bruins were able to acquire some help for their trip to Nashville to face the Predators. No, it was not Tyler Toffoli or Chris Kreider, but it was actually a the Bruins’ moms. This was the Predator’s first game after parting ways with Peter Laviolette, so the Preds were certainly going to bring their A-game with new coach (and former Devils’ coach) John Hynes. 

The first period started off with a bang as the NHL’s leading goal scorer David Pastrnak came down the wing and blew a shot past Pekka Rinne just 1:36 into the game to give the Bruins the lead. The Bs continued their strong play throughout the period, testing Rinne for the full 20 minutes. A good period from top to bottom for the Bruins, where they were able to outshoot the Preds 13-8.

(Photo Credit: AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

Just a minute into the second period it seemed the Predators scored after a bizarre play. Charlie McAvoy was knocked into the net, taking it off its pegs, while Nick Bonino proceeded to put the puck in the net. After it was originally called a good goal (because the puck would’ve gone in regardless of the net being off) it was then called back due to the Pred’s Rocco Grimaldi causing McAvoy to knock off the net. Confusing, I know. At the 11:39 mark, Danton Heinen finished off a pretty passing play from Charlie Coyle and Matt Grzelyck with a rip from the slot, making it 2-0 Bruins. Nashville finally got their goal back after Filip Forsberg converted on a five on three PP for the Preds. Late in the period, Boston was able to regain their two-goal lead after Patrice Bergeron finished a nice feed from Jake Debrusk on the powerplay.

The Bs nearly added yet another goal seconds into the third, but Pekka Rinne shut the door on the top line. It wasn’t long after that chance when the Bruins did tack on yet another goal when a Par Lindholm shot went in off of Chris Wagner in front. You could tell it just wasn’t Nashville’s night after Tuukka Rask STONED Viktor Arvidsson midway through the third. Nashville found a little life late after pulling within two on the powerplay, but it was all for not after a David Krejci empty netter and a late Charlie Coyle goal.

Jan 9 Winnipeg Jets @ Boston Bruins

The moms made the trip back to Boston with the team and it paid dividends in a back-and-forth game against the Jets. We aren’t going to mention the 2015 draft, at all, but the 17th overall pick Kyle Connor put Winnipeg on the board first after dipsy-doodling past Torey Krug and roofing one on Jaroslav Halak. A good shift by the second line and a semi-break for Chris Wagner both amounted to nothing, so the Bs remained without a goal. That was until the duo of Sean Kuraly and Joakim Nordstrom connected with David Pastrnak in the slot to tie the game. After a great play from David Backes, Danton Heinen and Charlie Coyle wouldn’t go, the period closed, knotted at one. 

Exactly six minutes into the second, the Jets were able to retake the lead on the powerplay after Andrew Copp collected his 7th goal of the season. That lead didn’t hold for much longer as who but the league’s leading goal scorer, David Pastrnak, sent an absolute rocket past Laurent Brossoit on the powerplay, 2-2. Chris Wagner was inches away from giving the B’s their first lead of the game as he rattled one off the post, but the game remained tied. That 2-2 tie wouldn’t last the period as Jake Debrusk came in on a breakaway and buried one past Laurent Brossoit with 1:11 left. What should’ve been an easy final minute to kill off for the Bs, ended up being the opportunity for the Jets to tie it up,  when Neil Pionk scored on the powerplay with just seconds left on the clock

NHL: Boston Bruins vs Winnipeg Jets

(Photo Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports)

After about eight minutes of stalemate, the Jets were able to regain their lead after Mark Schiefele banked a shot in off of Jaroslav Halak. When Jake Debrusk took advantage of a poor change from the Jets by driving to the net, David Krejci collected the rebound and fed Pasta in front of the net, queuing the hats to start flying down from the rafters. If you thought you had time to run to the bathroom before the lamp was lit once again, you missed the Bs take the lead. Just 30 seconds after the tying goal, Krejci won a faceoff clean to Matt Grzelyck, who fed McAvoy for a one-timer that Jake Debrusk tipped in, and topped it off with a beautiful celly. That proved to be the nail in the coffin for the Jets, as they were not able to muster up anything to come back.

Jan 11 Boston Bruins @ New York Islanders

The mom-less Bruins headed to New York for their next game with a couple of players hitting milestones along the way (Torey Krug and Sean Kuraly playing their 500th and 200th games respectively). It was all Islanders early in this game, with Tuukka Rask forced to make save after save until the Isles were able to breakthrough. Scott Mayfield’s shot from the point snuck past Rask, giving New York the lead. Rask continued to battle after a bad period from the Bs and made 13 saves in the first. 

A couple big saves by Rask opened the second period until the Bruins were able to knot the game up at one.  A clean breakout led to Charlie McAvoy joining the rush, and the ensuing traffic in front of the net lead to Jake Debrusk’s equalizer. The rest of the period showcased the two goaltenders battling it out, and the game continued into the third, tied 1-1. 

That was until a seeing eye shot from John Moore found its way through Semyon Varlamov to give the Bruins their first lead of the night. That, unfortunately, didn’t silence Barclays Center for too long after Josh Bailey fed Matthew Barzal in front, who tucked it past Rask to tie the game. Some big saves from both Varlamov (namely two on David Krejci) and Rask sent the game into OT.

The Bruins were gifted a powerplay early into OT after Brock Nelson tripped up Brad Marchand, and that ended up being the demise for the Isles. “Mr. Perfect” Patrice Bergeron was able to collect a pass from Torey Krug in the slot, looked off the defense and wrist a shot past Varlamov to give the Bs the victory and complete the 3-0 week.

Roster/Injury News

  • Zdeno Chara missed the Bruins’ game in Winnipeg due to a jaw injury but played their next game in New York with no problem.
  • Joakim Nordstrom missed the game against the Predators due to an illness but has played in every game since.
  • Matt Grzelcyk left the game against the Islanders early and never returned. He played the next game in Philly.
Boston Bruins v New York Islanders

(Photo Credit:Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

My Three Stars of the Week 

A lot of contenders for this week’s honors. A few guys who just missed the cut were Danton Heinen (one goal, two assists, +3 rating), Charlie Coyle (one goal, two assists, +4 rating) and a trio of defensemen (Charlie McAvoy, Torey Krug, and Matt Grzelyck) who all picked up three assists in the week.

  1. Jake Debrusk

The second line has regained life and so has Debrusk. The Edmonton native had a point in every game and ended with a statline of three goals, two assists, and a +3 rating. 

  1. David Pastrnak

The Bs’ main dish of choice this week was Pasta, who put up four goals in three games. His hockey IQ was on full display and he showed why he’s leading the league in goals.

  1. Tuukka Rask

Take that Rask haters. Tuukka was incredible this week, going 2-0 with a .944 save percentage and a sub 2.00 goals allowed average. He single handedly kept the Bruins in both games and without him, there was not a chance the Bruins go 3-0.

Play of the Week – David Pastrnak Goal

Gotta be this shot by Pastrnak. The video would be a whole lot better with sound.

Final Notes

  • Anders Bjork has made the 2nd line FAR more dynamic. While he only had one point, it was clear his playmaking ability gelled very well with Jake Debrusk and David Krejci. I think we’ll see a big uptick in points from the Notre Dame product
  • Joakim Nordstrom took a few shifts next to Krejci and Debrusk despite Bjork’s solid play. I’d hope that doesn’t continue to happen. 
  • Tuukka Rask is awesome.
  • Danton Heinen is getting his confidence back. He looked good this week, making skill and power moves while tacking on three points in the process. 
  • This big week proved that the Bruins can take a little more time to find the winger they need. I still think they need some help in the middle-six, but Bjork, Heinen and Debrusk’s play this week proved the Bruins still have a lot to work with on their roster.
  • Oh, and Pekka Rinne has more goals than Charlie McAvoy, that is all.

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 162 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

Game Recap 1/13/20 | Bruins Fall In Shootout Vs. Flyers, 6-5

BradImage result for boston bruins vs philadelphia flyers"(Photo Credits: Eric Hartline-USA Today Sports)

By: Liz Rizzo | Follow me on Twitter @pastagrl88

In a disappointing end that saw the game go to a shootout, the Boston Bruins fell to the Philadelphia Flyers as they let a three-goal lead slip through their hands tonight.

Game Recap

Boston came into Philadelphia with a 3-0 game streak and wasted no time in the first few minutes of the first period. The Bruins saw productive shifts that saw more time down the Flyers zone. Boston would strike first as Anders Bjork opened up the scoreboard. Notching his 7th goal of the season, the 23-year-old winger would score off a bad giveaway on the Flyers’ end. With the momentum on the B’s side, Boston had another opportunity as they went on the power-play on a tripping call to Patrice Bergeron.

In a beautiful set-up, Bruins winger  Charlie Coyle connected with Danton Heinen, who was able to send the puck up to a charging David Krejci. Skating with tremendous speed, the 33-year-old winger was able to tuck one in past Carter Hart, making the score 2-0. That goal would mark the 14th game in a row the Bruins scored on the power-play. The Flyers, however, would answer back as Patrice Bergeron was called on a double minor. At 18:22 Kevin Hayes would score on a slap shot that saw the puck go behind Jaroslav Halak, making it his 14th goal of the season.

SHOTS ON GOAL: BOS-14, PHI-12

SCORE: BOS-2, PHI-1

The second period proved to be quite the busy one for both teams as six goals were recorded. Seconds into the period,  David Pastrnak would score off a backhand, making it 3-1. Not to be outdone, the Flyers would quickly answer back as Travis Sanheim scored his 6th of the season. As Philly looked to close the gap and stay within one, Boston had other plans. At 4:50, Charlie Coyle sent the puck behind the Flyers net, making it 4-2.  David Krejci would net his second of the night as he sent a snapshot past Hart,  adding some cushion to the score, making it 5-2.

As things looked to turn around, at 13:12, the Flyers’ Sean Couturier would slide one right between the pads of Jaroslav Halak, making it 5-3. Continuing with the momentum, Philly again scored and would be within one. Flyers’ center Connor Bunnaman had his first goal of the season (off a deflection) making it 5-4.

SHOTS ON GOAL: BOS-6, PHI-15

SCORE: BOS-5, PHI-4

Boston’s Brad Marchand would draw an interference penalty seconds into the third period but they were unable to take advantage. In a physical, close game, the period saw both teams grind out hits as a scrum broke out at around the seven-minute mark. Torey Krug and Joel Farabee would be charged with a penalty. The Flyers’ Travis Sanheim netted his second goal of the game, tying it 5-5.

In the last minute, Boston would furiously hit the Flyers’ net but was unable to connect as the game went into overtime. Unfortunately, both teams were unable to score amid multiple scoring chances. Much like their first meeting, the game would go to a shootout. The Flyers previously won 3-2 back in November. Travis Konecny would score the  lone goal, and unfortunately, Brad Marchand would overskate the puck, grazing it enough to move it-canceling out the play that resulted in  a “no goal.” In the second meeting of the season, Philly would once again defeat the Bruins in the dreaded shootout.

FINAL SCORE/ SO: BOS-5, PHI-6

TOTAL SHOTS ON GOAL: BOS-31, PHI-39

WHAT’S NEXT FOR THE BRUINS: Tomorrow, January 14th against Columbus Blue Jackets, with puck drop at 7:00 pm, Nationwide Arena

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 162 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

 

 

 

Game Recap | Boston Bruins Defeat New York Islanders 3-2

Image result for boston bruins vs new york islanders"(Photo Credits: Mike Stobe/NHLI via Getty Images)

By: Liz Rizzo | Follow me on Twitter @pastagrl88

The last time these two teams met, the Bruins lost in a shootout on home ice, 3-2. This time, however, Boston turned the tide and edged out the Islanders on their home ice, winning 3-2 in overtime.

GAME BREAKDOWN

Boston would open up the period right out of the gates that had David Pastrnak being denied in front of the Isles net, but things would change quickly. In a match-up against the league’s top two defensive teams,  the New York Islanders struck first as Scott Mayfield scored his fifth of the season, making it 1-0. Boston battled in their end forcing Tuukka Rask to squeeze out as many saves as the Isles continued to have great scoring chances.

New York had great momentum in the first as they took advantage of the Bruins’ defensive breakdowns. The Isles drew a penalty on a Charlie McAvoy hooking but was unable to capitalize. Boston would have a hard time coming out of their own zone and connecting with plays as they were out-chanced by the Islanders.

END OF PERIOD: BOS- 0 , NYI- 1

SHOTS ON GOAL: BOS- 5, NYI- 14

The second period would see New York continue their ice dominance as the Bruins played catch-up. New York had some anxious moments as the B’s missed a scoring chance on a wide-open net. Boston saw a shift in the game as Jake DeBrusk scored off a wrist shot at 8:33, tying it 1-1.  The Isles were trying to get the momentum back on their end as they had a potential two-on-one chance, however, McAvoy would get a stick on the play.

Boston drew a penalty in the last five minutes of the period and saw a missed opportunity to take lead after Pastrnak was denied on a wrap-around. Brad Marchand would shoot outside the dot, however, the Isles goaltender Semyon Varlamov shut it down.  In a back-and-forth effort, the last few moments of the second period saw no additional score from either team.

END OF PERIOD: BOS- 1, NYI- 1

SHOTS ON GOAL: BOS- 16, NYI- 25

Matt Grzelcyk would not return to the game due to a lower-body injury. Boston was able to connect as they found themselves playing more down the Isles zone in the final period. Not to be outdone, New York would charge to the net, forcing Rask to yet again make multiple saves, keeping the game within reach.  Boston’s John Moore would net his second goal of the season, scoring off a slap shot. The Bruins would lead for the first time tonight, 2-1.

Image result for boston bruins vs new york islanders"(Photo Credits: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

At  9:33 in the third, the Islanders’ Matt Barzal would nudge his 17th of the season in-between the pads of Tuukka Rask, tying the game 2-2. Both teams had tough turnovers down their end with missed scoring chances. With six minutes left, the Bruins placed tremendous pressure that saw multiple deflections, but no score.

In between the commercial break, David Pastrnak would head down to the dressing room with the team’s trainer but returned to the ice. Despite efforts on either end, the game would go to overtime.

The Bruins would go on the power-play as Brad Marchand drew a tripping penalty and Patrice Bergeron would send the puck in the back of the net, scoring his 19th of the season. Boston would win their third straight with the game series even at one win a piece against the Islanders.

FINAL/OT: BOS- 3,  NYI- 2

SHOTS ON GOAL: BOS- 33, NYI- 37

WHAT’S NEXT FOR THE BRUINS: Monday, January 13th vs. Philadelphia Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center, with puck drop at 7:00pm

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 161 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

Boston Bruins Week In Review Dec 30th-Jan 5th

Boston Bruins' Zdeno Chara (33) defends against Edmonton Oilers' Leon Draisaitl (29) during the second period on an NHL hockey game in Boston, Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

( Photo Credit: AP Photo/Michael Dwyer )

By: Lucas Pearson  |  Follow Me On Twitter @LucasPearson_

As this new year begins, I’d like to start pumping out these weekly update articles. These will feature quick game recaps, roster and injury news, three stars of the week, a play of the week and my general thoughts on the week that transpired. If you missed anything Bruins related, here’s where to go.

Dec 31st Boston Bruins @ New Jersey Devils

After a rough start to December, the Bruins rattled off three wins in a row coming into New Jersey. Despite losing former MVP Taylor Hall after sending him to the Arizona Coyotes, the Devils were starting to play better hockey. Leading into their matchup with the Bruins, the Devils went 2-0-1. Even with both teams’ respective recent success, this was a game against a bottom-feeder was a game the Bruins needed to have.

The game started as well as one could think for the Bruins after Devils defenseman was sent to the box 1:17 into the game. The Bs were able to capitalize early on the powerplay after Brad Marchand buried a rebound off of a David Pastrnak shot with Matt Grzelyck (who did a very solid job filling in for Torey Krug) picking up the secondary assist.

New Jersey Devils Vs Boston Bruins At TD Garden

( Photo Credit: Matthew J. Lee/The Boston Globe – Getty Images )

The Bs were able to tack on another goal after Joakim Nordstrom lit the lamp just over four minutes into the second period and with a 2-0 lead, you’d think the Bruins would be able to hang onto the lead. Well, after trading chances for much of the period, the Devils were able to score after Nikita Gusev and Blake Coleman finished off a nice give and go to cut the Bs’ lead in half.

The third period was an absolute mess for the Bruins. The Devils were able to pull even after Jesper Bratt deflected a PK Subban shot. In all honesty. The black and gold were lucky to make it out of the period after getting outshot 19-5. There wasn’t much going on in overtime outside of a Matt Grzelcyk shot that rang off the crossbar, so to the shootout it went.

With all the success the Bs have had in shootouts, you can all probably see where this one went. After four rounds of nothing from either side, Jack Hughes and Chris Wagner traded goals. To open the sixth round, Damon Severson put a nifty move on Jaroslav Halak and Mackenzie Blackwood stoned Patrice Bergeron, giving the Devils the 3-2 win.

Jan 2nd Columbus Blue Jackets @ Boston Bruins

After what I’m sure was a splendid New Years’ Eve and a January 1st full of recovering, the Bruins came back home to face an injury-riddled Columbus Blue Jackets team. This game had a very similar narrative to the Bruins last one. Gustav Nyqvist seemed to score very early into the game, but to me and many others’ surprise, a goal review HELPED the Bruins. A couple of big saves from Tuukka Rask and Elvis Merzlikins kept the first half of the game scoreless. 

boston-bruins-tuukka-rask-blue-jackets-31219.jpg

( Photo Credit: USA TODAY Sports photo )

The tie was broken after a Bruins’ powerplay saw David Pastrnak rip his 30th of the year. The Blue Jackets were able to tie the game up with 17:54 left in the 3rd Period after Sony Milano wheeled the puck towards the net and got a fortuitous bounce off of Matt Grzelcyk. The save of the night belonged to Merzlikins soon after that when he made a save off of an Anders Bjork partial break, and denied Par Lindholm on the rebound attempt.

The game remained knotted at one going into overtime. The duo of David Krejci and David Pastrnak were oh so close to winning the game less than a minute into OT, but that missed chance proved to be the Bruins’ demise. After the chance, (and a very poor defensive play from Pastrnak) Seth Jones was able to scoop up the puck and dish over to Pierre-Luc Dubois who ended the Bruins’ night on a sour note. That marked the second game in a row the Bruins had blown a lead to a team outside of the playoffs

Jan 4th Edmonton Oilers @ Boston Bruins

Another game, another early lead for the Bruins. Who but David Pastrnak was able to capitalize on the powerplay to give Boston a 1-0 lead less than four minutes into the hockey game, but that was all the offense the Bruins could muster up. Jaroslav Halak was certainly the best thing going for the Bruins early in this game. The netminder made a massive save off of a one-time shot from Connor McDavid later in the 1st, keeping the Bruins lead. 

There was some back and forth action in the second until Jake Debrusk muffed a pass through the middle of the ice, allowing Gaeton Hass to snag the puck, and sneak it five-hole on Halak. The second period ended on a tough note for the Bruins when Darnell Nurse threw the puck on net from the corner and it found twine with just seconds left in the period.

Something began to click early in the third period as the Bruins 1st and 4th lines were able to generate a couple of scoring chances but that was ultimately thwarted when the Zack Kassian capitalized on a defensive breakdown and fed McDavid for the goal. The Bruins failed to score the rest of the game, and after an empty netter from Draisaitl, Edmonton picked up the 4-1 victory, capping off a poor weak from the Bruins.

( Photo Credit: Steve Babineau/ NHLI – Getty Images)

Roster/Injury News

  • David Krejci missed the game in New Jersey but played the remaining two games this week.
  • Charlie McAvoy also returned after missing a pair of games against Buffalo and one against New Jersey
  • Matt Grzelcyk missed the game against Oilers because of illness
  • Connor Clifton missed all three games this week, and will not travel to Nashville for the Bruins next game
  • Torey Krug returned to action in Columbus after missing the previous three games
  • Joakim Nordstrom will also miss the game in Nashville due to illness
  • Jeremy Lauzon was recalled for the Bruins game in New Jersey but was returned to Providence after playing
  • Both Karson Kuhlman and Zach Senyshyn were assigned to the AHL and look to be healthy

( Photo Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel/USA TODAY Sports )

My Three Stars of the Week

  1. David Pastrnak

Not really much to choose from this week, but Pasta was able to score half the Bruins goals this weekend. I wasn’t super impressed by much, and his lackluster defense against the Blue Jackets lead to the Bs losing the game, but he did have a great goal in that same game. Pastrnak had two goals, one assist, and a -3 rating during the week.

  1. Tuukka Rask

He let up one goal in regulation that ricocheted off of his teammate’s skate and a one-timer goal on a two on one in OT. He played very well and was far from the reason the Bruins lost in Columbus. 

  1. Jaroslav Halak

So he went 0-1-1, but just like Rask, but he wasn’t at fault for either of the losses. He made 42 saves against the Devils in their shootout loss and kept the Bs in the game from the start. Against Edmonton, he gave up one soft goal and the other two were when an Oiler was in alone on him. He made a lot of big saves in both games.

Play of the Week – Jaroslav Halak save on Connor McDavid

If you were asked to pick two players to go in on a two on one in an NHL game, I’m sure Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl would be towards the very top of the list. After Draisaitl shuffled past Brandon Carlo, he dished the puck to McDavid who got good wood on a one-timer but was greeted by a slick left pad by Halak.  It’s a shame the Bs went on to lose that game because this save would’ve been looked back on far more.

NHL: SEP 25 Preseason - Devils at Bruins

( Photo Credit: Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire – Getty Images)

Final Notes

  • Despite not recording a point, I really liked Anders Bjork’s game this week. He generated a plethora of high-quality chances and continues to improve each and every game. It seems he’ll get rewarded from his play by getting a shot in the top-6 with Krejci and Jake Debrusk.
  • The Bruins need a jump in their offense, something isn’t clicking. Maybe calling up a guy like Zach Senyshyn or Jack Studnicka who both looked good in their previous call-ups will help. Maybe the Bs look elsewhere and make a move for a guy like Tyler Toffoli or Kyle Palmieri. Maybe all it takes is a shuffle of the lines, putting David Pastrnak with David Krejci or something of the sort.
  • The biggest key is to not overreact. Yes, it has been an awful stretch for the Bruins, but there is still a lot of time left in the season. Their lead in the Atlantic has diminished, but they still hold a six-point lead over the Toronto Maple Leafs with a game in hand. Let’s see how this next week goes.

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 161 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

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Bruins Game 43 Preview: Edmonton Oilers

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PHOTO CREDITS: (Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports)

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

Looking to continue their strong season, the Boston Bruins host the Edmonton Oilers in the first meeting between the two teams in opposing conferences. The Bruins boast the second-best record in the National Hockey League with a 24-7-11 record through the halfway mark of the regular season. The Bruins are coming into the game following a tight 2-1 overtime loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Thursday night.

For the Edmonton Oilers, they are entering Saturday’s game with a record of 21-17-5 after 43 games played and have a sub-par record of 3-6-1 in their last ten contests. The Oilers started the season off hot, near the top of the league, but have since fallen off the rails and are now grasping for any signs of life before they fall out of a playoff spot. In their last time out, the Oilers felt short, losing to the Buffalo Sabres 3-2 in overtime.

Starting Goaltenders:

BOS: Jaroslav Halak 9-3-5 2.20 GAA .930 SV% Last Game: 42 Saves in 3-2 SO loss vs NJD

EDM: Mikko Koskinen (Not Confirmed) 14-8-2 2.85 GAA .912 SV% Last Game: 28 Saves in 7-5 win vs NYR

*Goaltenders may change before puck drop.

Who’s Hot:

David Pastrnak has proven time and time again that he is among the very best that the National Hockey League has to offer and his current nine-game point streak is a perfect example of that. In these past nine games, the 23-year-old forward has 4-10-14 numbers, helping him extend his position as the leading goal scorer in the NHL with 30 goals, only three goals ahead of Toronto Maple Leafs forward Auston Matthews who has 27 on the campaign.

Connor McDavid, on a good or bad team, plays at such a high level that he is almost always “hot”. McDavid leads the league in points with 64, (22 goals, 42 assists), only one point ahead of teammate Leon Draisaitl, 23-40-63, on the year. This dynamic duo has been dominating all season long, with McDavid just recently having a four-game point streak.

Patrice Bergeron failed to score a point against the New Jersey Devils on New Year’s Eve, but the four-time Selke winner added an assist in Thursday’s loss to Columbus, improving his numbers to 17-19-36 in only 33 games thus far, scoring seven of those points in his last five games. Between December 21st and December 27th, Bergeron scored two goals in a game for three straight games, proving that he can score goals as well as be one of the best defensive forwards in the game.

Who’s Not:

Oilers forward Alex Chiasson scored twenty-two goals last year for Edmonton but in 36 games so far this year, the 29-year-old has only 4-8-12 totals and has not found the scoresheet in his last five starts. Against the Rangers, Chiasson was scratched but made his way back into the lineup against the Sabres, playing 11:25 of ice-time with zero points and only one shot on goal.

Against the Devils, almost the entire Bruins lineup was lacking in the effort the put out on the ice for the final forty minutes of play. With the exception of Sean Kuraly and Chris Wagner, the Bruins seemed sluggish, slow, and had no motivation in their game, eventually leading to New Jersey tying the game and winning it in a shootout. Boston failed to win battles along the boards, lost races to the puck, and only managed fourteen shots in the second and third periods combined. Against Columbus, not much changed as they lost a one-goal lead before eventually losing early into the overtime session. The Bruins need a better 60-minute effort against Edmonton on Saturday to pick up a win.

Milestone Watch:

Boston Bruins:

  • F David Krejci is three points away (671) from tying Ken Hodge (673) for 8th-most points in Bruins history
  • D Zdeno Chara is two penalty minutes away (1029) from passing Ted Green (1029) for sole possession of 7th-most penalties in minutes in Bruins history
  • F Brad Marchand is two even-strength goals away (205) from tying Ken Hodge (207) for 8th-most even-strength goals in Bruins history
  • F Patrice Bergeron is one power-play goal away (102) from passing Rick Middleton (102) for sole possession of 5th-most power-play goals in Bruins history

Edmonton Oilers:

  • G Mike Smith is one shutout away (39) from 40 career NHL shutouts*
  • F Connor McDavid is one point away (436) from passing Esa Tikkanen (436) for sole possession of 10th-most points in Oilers history

*if he gets the start Saturday vs BOS

Bruins vs Oilers Outlook:

Since these teams are in opposite conferences, they will only play each other twice during the 82-game campaign. Last season, Boston played the Oilers twice, with the Bruins winning the season series with a record of 1-0-1. On October 11th, 2018, the Bruins defeated Edmonton by a final score of 4-to-1, before losing a week later in overtime 3-2.

As mentioned previously, the Oilers were once near the top of the overall league standings as a result of their strong month of October, however, due to some poor goaltending and lack of consistent defense, they have fallen to the second wild-card spot in the Western Conference and 16th in the league standings. The Oilers have an 11-9-2 road record compared to Boston’s strong 14-1-9 record when playing inside the TD Garden – the arena of Saturday’s tilt.

An interesting facet of Saturday’s game will be the power-play as both teams are in the top-three for power-play percentage so far this season. Edmonton currently has the best man-advantage in the NHL, scoring at 30.0% on 130 power-play opportunities. The Bruins are not far behind, scoring at 27.2% on 136 power-play opportunities.

On the other hand, Boston has the second-best penalty-kill in the league, killing off 85.4% of their 152 penalties while Edmonton has the fourth-best penalty kill, killing off 83.6% of their 142 penalties. Boston has also drawn the fourth-most penalties throughout the season so far, drawing a total of 171 penalties – 25 more than Edmonton’s 146.

With two of the best duos in the league (Marchand & Pastrnak; McDavid & Draisaitl), going toe-to-toe with one another, expect this to be quite an entertaining hockey game. There are NHL odds here that will be updated as it gets closer to the time of the game so don’t be surprised if you see a change in the spread.

Puck drop is scheduled for 1:00 pm EST from the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 160 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

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Bruins Post-Game Recap: Boston vs. Columbus: 1/2/20

Photo Credit: (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

By Mike Cratty | Follow me on Twitter @Mike_Cratty

Home: Boston Bruins

Away: Columbus Blue Jackets

Boston’s Lineup

Forwards

Marchand – Bergeron – Pastrnak

DeBrusk – Krejci – Coyle

Bjork – Lindholm – Heinen

Nordstrom – Kuraly – Wagner

Defense

Chara – McAvoy

Krug – Carlo

Moore – Grzelcyk

Goalies

Rask

Halak

Columbus’s Lineup

Forwards

Nyquist – Jenner – Foligno

Gerbe – DuBois – Stenlund

MacInnis – Nash – Lilja

Milano – Wennberg – Robinson

Defense

Werenski – Jones

Gavrikov – Savard

Harrington – Kukan

Goalies

Merzlikins

Kivlenieks

The Columbus Blue Jackets made their way to TD Garden to kick off the 2020 slate of the season for both teams. The Blue Jackets came into this one without a single regulation loss in their last ten games and 6-0-4 record as a result. After a tough shootout loss to the New Jersey Devils, the Bruins looked to get back in the win column. Good news came in the form of David Krejci, Torey Krug, and Charlie McAvoy all returning to the lineup. Additionally, how about a milestone to get 2020 going?

First Period

It appeared that the Blue Jackets found themselves a golden opportunity just 17 seconds into the game. But, Gustav Nyquist’s goal was overturned after a video review for goaltender interference. The Bruins dodged a bullet early on. Joakim Nordstrom flew into 2020 with some jam.

It was a feeling-out process for much of the rest of the period. While the Bruins controlled the flow of the game for a solid portion of it, there weren’t many great scoring chances and the period moved pretty quickly with very few whistles. In fact, it was the quickest period of the season for the Bruins. The Blue Jackets outshot the Bruins 9-8 through the first 20 minutes.

Score: 0-0

Second Period

With the quick first period came a lack of penalties. That changed in the second period when Nick Foligno went off for hooking with 15:12 remaining. The Bruins entered the man advantage with the third-best power play in the NHL and an eight-game power play goal streak. Zach Werenski nearly gave the Blue Jackets the lead in shorthanded fashion, but hit the post.

The Bruins held an 8-6 shot advantage in the period through 10:28 of play, but overall in the game until this point, Columbus had already blocked 12 shots. That’s a pretty effective way to keep a game scoreless.

Dean Kukan then went off for tripping shortly after. David Pastrnak scored his 30th goal of the season just four seconds into the power play. Krug (22) and Patrice Bergeron (19) had the assists to help Pastrnak become the NHL’s first player to reach the 30-goal mark this season.

Just under a minute and 30 seconds after the Pastrnak goal, McAvoy found his way to the box for interference. The Bruins went killed it off. Brandon Carlo made some waves in the period on both sides of the ice. A great defensive read on a late 2-on-1 to keep the game scoreless, and a smart offensive zone pinch nearly extended the lead.

Zdeno Chara took a holding penalty within the final minute. The second period flew by, much like the first. The main difference is that David Pastrnak scored. Despite being down by a goal, Columbus didn’t let up. They held a 14-12 shot advantage in the period, bringing their total advantage to 23-20. A huge third period awaited both teams.

Score: 1-0 Boston

Third Period

The Bruins killed off the remaining portion of Chara’s holding penalty, but Sonny Milano got the Blue Jackets on the board not too long after. He sent the puck towards net seemingly with the idea of it bouncing off of Matt Grzelcyk or Nathan Gerbe, and it bounced off of Grzelcyk as him and Gerbe battled in front of the net. The game was tied with 17:54 still remaining.

The third line and Charlie Coyle went on to create some great chances, amongst others, but neither team wanted to budge and fall behind late in the game. Jake DeBrusk had an excellent chance on a rolling puck slip out of his grasp in the final two minutes. Ending this stalemate in intermission was not an easy task. Some great effort of Grzelcyk through the neutral zone and beyond made the DeBrusk chance happen.

Both goalies played pretty well in regulation, and in doing so forced this game to overtime. There wasn’t a lack of goal scoring for a lack of trying. It became one of those games where you wait for something to open up and end it.

Score: 1-1

Overtime

Pastrnak nearly buried his second of the game and 31st of the season early on. Pierre-Luc DuBois made good on a one-timer set up by Seth Jones not too long after to end this one 52 seconds into overtime.

An overtime loss is a rough way to start 2020 for the Bruins. Through the third period and overtime, the Blue Jackets outshot the Bruins 10-6, and 33-26 overall. Tuukka Rask made 31 saves. Next up are the Edmonton Oilers at TD Garden at 1 PM ET on Saturday. The Bruins are 24-7-11.

Final Score: 2-1 Columbus

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 160 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

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Post-Game Wrap | Boston Bruins Defeat Buffalo Sabres 3-2

Bruin David Pastrnak skates past the Sabres Rasmus Asplund.(Photo Credits: Jessica Rinaldi/Boston Globe)

By: Liz Rizzo | Follow me on Twitter @pastagrl88

The Boston Bruins returned to the TD Garden in their second of a home/home series against the Buffalo Sabres. In their last meeting on home ice of 2019, Boston came in tonight following a two-game winning streak while Buffalo was looking to get one back after dropping Friday’s game 3-0.

GAME RECAP

With the first period underway, the Bruins found themselves playing with a man disadvantage, however, they were able to kill off the penalty. Buffalo had some close calls and Boston’s Brad Marchand had a chance to score a short-handed, however, he was staved off by the Sabres defense. Despite the Sabres having more shots on goal, Boston placed a good amount of pressure down Buffalo’s end.  It would the top line of Bergeron-Marchand-Pastrnak that would open up the score at 12:39 in the first. Nailing a wrist shot past Linus Ullmark, David Pastrnak would net his 29th league-leading goal of the season.

END OF FIRST: BOS-1, BUF-0

SHOTS ON GOAL: BOS-2, BUF-7

Seconds into the next period, Boston would find themselves on the power-play after a trip on Marchand. The Bruins had possession for most of the power-play as they fluttered pucks on Ullmark, but were unable to score.  Despite an initial stop by Rask, the Sabres would push one on past Boston’s goaltender, tying the score at one-a-piece. There was a question on possible goaltender interference, however, it would be ruled a good goal. Rasmus Ristolainen would be credited with the goal off a snapshot. Towards the end of the second, the energy tilted towards the Sabres. Connor Clifton would not return to the game after suffering an upper-body injury.

END OF SECOND: BOS-1, BUF-1

SHOTS ON GOAL: BOS-11, BUF-12

Boston would have a huge opportunity early in the third when they drew a four-minute double penalty leading to Jake DeBrusk scoring his 10th goal of the season. Seconds later, DeBrusk would score once again. With the Bruins up 3-1 with 16 minutes left in the third period,  Buffalo would fight back as they trickle one past Rask, making the score 3-2.

With minutes left in the third, both teams played with much-needed urgency and desperation and saw the Sabres outshooting the Bruins. Buffalo would draw a penalty with four minutes left as Brett Ritchie would be sent to the box for tripping. Ullman would be pulled with 19 seconds left to the power-play. Boston attempted to add one more on an empty net but fell short asthey drew a penalty with 17 seconds left. Both teams did not score and the Boston Bruins would close out the year on home ice on a high note.

FINAL SCORE: BOS-3, BUF-2

TOTAL SHOTS ON GOAL: BOS-22, BUF-26

WHAT’S NEXT FOR THE BRUINS: December 31st, against New Jersey Devils with puck drop at 1:00pm, at the Prudential Center.

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 159 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

 

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!! 

 

 

 

Bruins Leadership A Big “Plus”

Image result for bruins marchand bergeron chara(Photo Credit: Zimbio)

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

When it comes to the B’s best plus players… well, there are certainly not many minuses in their game. Literally now as much as figuratively.

As the Boston Bruins official @NHLBruins Twitter account shared ahead of the B’s big shutout victory on the road over the Buffalo Sabres, a triumvirate of Black N’ Gold leaders and all-stars are wrapping up quite the DECADE of positive play.

Captain Zdeno Chara, Alternate Captain (but we all know it’s “Co-Captain”) Patrice Bergeron and often “A”-wearer Brad Marchand are the NHL’s top three performers in plus/minus since January 1st, 2010. Talk about bringing your “A-Game” every game and for the past ten years!

Image result for bruins marchand bergeron chara(Photo Credit: NBC Sports)

Marchand is atop the list at a staggering +215. Chara is up next at +207. And Bergeron rounds out the heralded “top three” at +201.

However, after all three of them boosted their stats during teammate Jaroslav Halak’s impressive 3-0 shutout — the 50th of his career — those all-important plus/minus numbers have now jumped!

Marchy moved up to +217, Big Z jumped to +208 and Bergy added two more pluses (I mean, doesn’t he have an endless supply of pluses to his game already?) to get to +203. And with two more games to go before the decade ends — against the Sabres and Devils, respectively — you can bet those numbers will improve even more before the team rings in 2020.

As a reminder, here’s how the NHL defines plus/minus:

A player is awarded a “plus” each time he is on the ice when his Club scores an even-strength or shorthanded goal. He receives a “minus” if he is on the ice for an even-strength or shorthanded goal scored by the opposing Club. The difference in these numbers is considered the player’s “plus-minus” statistic.

And statistically speaking, you’d be hard-pressed to find another trio of modern-day hockey talent that have positively produced like Marchand, Chara and Bergeron.

Image result for bruins marchand bergeron chara(Photo Credit: NHL.com)

You know how to cap off such an impressive accomplishment in the New Year? Bring home one more Stanley Cup to Boston (and ideally in Boston this time…we’ve had enough of these other teams celebrating on TD Garden ice) while all three are still together!

Now, wouldn’t that be a plus?

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 159 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

HAPPY NEW YEAR, BRUINS FANS!