Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Boys Keep Rolling

After about thirty days with no fucking hockey, the Bruins bounced the Canucks last night. It was good test for them, and it was great to see Looch get three points playing in front of his home town.
Couple things:
-I feel disconnected watching these west coast games. I love the late start time, but it's hard to get the hate up for a team that you see once every eight fucking years (at least that's what it feels like). The difference in the way the conferences play is on display, and I honestly like the physical, grind it out style of the East over the way the West teams plays. Just saying.
-None of the new guys have wowed me yet. Guess they'll need some time.
-Great to see Shane Hnidy signing a deal with the team. I never understood why they let this guy walk in the first place, and having defensive depth going in to the playoffs will be huge. He already knows the system and most of the guys, so it will be an easy fit. I hope his shoulder heals up soon, as it appears that Ference went down last night. Ference, tough dude as his is (at least with his flying fists), was long overdue for some type of malady.
-I don't know who puts together the Bruins page on, but it's getting kind of obnoxious. Today's headline was about the scrum Marchand got in last night. Weak. To further their retardation, there was an article about how David Krejci should be in consideration for the 7th player award. Um, okay.
-All the best of luck to Sturmy who ended up in Washington. I have no doubt we'll see his angry goal face when he scores against the Bruins at some point.
Oilers tonight. Taylor Hall vs. Tyler Seguin blah blah blah. Yes Hall is putting up pretty decent numbers for a rookie...but he's also playing for the Oilers, who are challenging a few other shitty teams for the "Most Closely Resembles A Used Tampon" Award.
Go B's.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Chiarelli Makes Some Moves

After several days of rumors and various trade scenarios, the front office made some moves. I'm not going to lie, I guess I'm a bit underwhelmed.
Fake Wheeler and Stuart were shipped to Atlanta for Peverley and Valabik. We've yet to see Peverley in a game, but I've been wracking my brain and can't remember hearing his name when he has played against the B's. Valabik, a former high 1st round pick, has reported straight to Providence. A very large man, he had me laughing when he gave Kessel a hard time a few years ago. I would be surprised if we ever saw him play a game with the big club, but we'll see. Though Wheeler's play had improved a bit over the last ten or so games, I think that a change in location was definitely needed. He looked too comfortable, often failing to really put out a good effort. Similar to when Brad Boyes was moved, I think that Wheeler will go on a tear, but his play will plateau and he'll be the guy getting 15 goals every year, though his coaches will be frustrated with having to light a fire under his ass every single game.
I will miss having Caveman Stuart out there. His play had improved over the last few seasons and he really grew on me. If you recall, it was Stuart and Andrew Alberts that used to compete for playing time. I was surprised when the Bruins moved Alberts and gave Stuart the vote of confidence, but he has evolved into a tough shutdown defender that brought the physicality every night. Best of luck to him in Atlanta.
Kaberle suited up for his first game against the Sens on friday night, and though he has skill that is readily apparent, I'm still not excited by him. I'm most excited by the fact that he is "finally" a Bruin and that we can FINALLY stop hearing about him possibly coming to the Bruins. I am definitely suffering from Kaberle-fatigue. We'll have to see if he re-signs with the Bruins when the season is up. I've never been a fan of rental players and the way that teams will mortgage their future (prospects, draft picks, etc.) to pick someone up that will most likely be gone in four months. I am hoping that I will be eating my words after the season is over and the Bruins have hoisted the Cup, but I'm not feeling all warm and fuzzy that this dude is the key to them winning the Cup. Only time will tell.
Couple things:
-Good to see Tuukka get some wins against weak teams. He looked reasonably sharp in both games.
-If the seventh player award was given today, it would have to be given to Marchand with Campbell getting an honorable mention. Both have far exceeded what they were supposed to bring this year.
-I was hoping that Horton would bring a steady scoring presence this year and not this streaky as shit after a night of drinking PBR play that he has shown. He has shown flashes all year, but has yet to really get on that pony and ride it to 30+ goals.
-I'm surprised that Krejci's name wasn't floated around as a possible trade. The Bruins, like every other team in the league, got all excited after his one good year and overpaid immediately. They threw big money at the kid and he has not come close to earning it this year. The strength of the Bruins over the last several years has been their depth at center. Patty Cake has had a great year (doing so quietly, this guy is just a fucking pro) and with Savvy down and Krejci playing like a blind man, this strength has quickly turned to a liability.
-It will be interesting to see what these trades do to the chemistry of the team.
The boys have a few more days off before their next game. They'll get some practice time in with their new mates and see if and how things click. The push for the playoffs is in full swing. Keep your eyes on New Jersey. They're coming fast and hard from the bottom of the East and I'm guessing that they're going to get in.
Go B's.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Ahhhh, What The Fuck?

I knew it would happen sooner or later.
Ol' One Nut, He Of Indifferent Attitude And Questionable Defensive Skills, finally scored against the Bruins (the shootout goal doesn't count in my mind). Though the boos warmed my heart (and what a cold, dark place that is), they still didn't put goals up on the board and the boys lost.
Strange game last night, with about a million posts hit on either side.
Couple things:
-Possibly to make himself less attractive (both physically and skill-wise) to other teams, Wheeler has shaved his goatee. This has no doubt led to his familiar girly-like play. I'm guessing that any teams that might have wanted him will now step back and say, " thanks. Our dressing rooms aren't set up with tampon dispensers. And it would just be cost prohibitive to add them."
-The rumors were absolutely flying prior to the game regarding Kaberle. For the past two or three years, this has been the trade deadline distraction for the B's and fans alike. Will he finally come to Boston? Though he puts up points every year, the thought of getting Kaberle doesn't make me sprout chub. I honestly don't think he would be a good fit in Boston and he is a UFA at the end of the year, so if he does come, he can play a few months and then go sign a big contract elsewhere. Granted, Savvy being placed on longterm IR has opened cap space, as would the departure of at least one player in a trade to obtain Kaberle, but I have a hard time seeing Kaberle in a Bruins uniform. If I were Chiarelli, who apparently really wants Kaberle, I would not give up more than one current NHLer to get him. I also wouldn't give up my 1st round pick. I'm thinking Wheeler or Stuart and a P-Bruin (not Joe Colborne). There's just too much of a risk that he'll leave at the end of the season. I'm just already tired of this guy because of all the speculation over the last few years. To me, anyone that is at the center of that much bullshit every single year might be a bit diva-esque (looking at you, Lindros), and I don't want that shit on the Bruins
-The Bruins flipped their 2nd rounder in this year's draft to the Sens last night for Chris Kelly. He's put up okay numbers this year (12 goals and about as many assists), but I'm not knocked off of my feet with this trade. Chiarelli might know something about the guy that I don't, but to me, the Bruins already seem to have enough guys like this. If this is the "big" trade for the Bruins this year, then I'm not seeing rainbows and lemon drops.
-Timmy looked mortal last night and his GAA and save percentage are approaching normal levels. I have no doubt that he must be tired, but Tuukka just doesn't have it this year. The Bruins will go exactly as far as Thomas' play allows them to.
-Good to see Caveman Stuart back out there last night. I'm sure he was angry at being a scratch for so many games and I had honestly thought that he had played his last game in the black and gold, though it still wouldn't surprise me if he was dealt. His play was missed in the 300-esque gladiator show that was the last Bruins/Habs game and I can't imagine being the type of player he is and having to watch that from the pressbox. Now I know you get an automatic 10 games for coming off the bench to join a fight, but what if you come out of the pressbox? Something to check into I guess.
Bruins/Isles on thursday. I think that about half of the Islanders are still serving suspensions for their game against the Pens last week (oh the violence!), but I'm hearing that they're bringing Tim "Dr. Hook" McCracken, Andre "Poodle" Lussier and Ogie Oglethorpe in to try and make the team tougher. And once again, if you don't know who those people are, don't read this blog ever again.
Go B's.

Friday, February 11, 2011

How To Beat The Habs: Score. Fight. Repeat.

The Bruins have finally figured out how to beat the hated Canadiens. It's a simple formula: check, slash and fight on every single play.
The Bruins can play the finesse game with the best of them. Slick passes, flying wingers and beautiful wrist shots are no problem. This type of game just doesn't seem to suit the boys though. This year's Bruins have no lack of skill.
They play so much better when things are nasty. The extra facewash, the scrums, the constant hits and whacks behind the play, the chirping at the other bench...something primal and mean comes out of the boys when they get the hate going early.
This was unleashed in all of its glory wednesday night. The boys showed that they have gelled into one cohesive unit. We've seen it before against Atlanta and Dallas. I don't think there is another team in the NHL than can stand with the Bruins when they play like this.
In what became an instant classic (I hate that term, but it's applicable), the Bruins finally decided that they were tired of losing to the Habs. The game was playoff-like in its intensity and was back and forth all night. The Bruins simply pounded them into submission. A game against the Habs like this has been coming for a long time and finally, FINALLY, they beat them.
Couple things:
-My preseason prediction for Marchand would have looked something like this: he'll play 10 to 13 minutes a night on the 3rd and 4th lines, he'll get some PK time because of his skating, he'll be a valuable grinder and get 8 to 10 goals with about 10 assists. And I would be wrong. Many props to both the staff of the P-Bruins as well as Julien and his crew for turning this kid into an offensive threat and rewarding him for his efforts. He now has 16 goals and counting. He'll finish with 20+ and should be a staple on the Bruins for years to come.
-I could tell right from the start that Looch was feeling squirrely and was going to have a big game. He should look at film and realize, once again, that when he plays physical, he gets so much more room. Hope he keeps it up.
-I was heartened to see the clip that NESN put together regarding Ference. Brick mentioned that "the kid is game" and constantly stands up for teammates. All of the clips showed this. Ference is catching a rash of shit for his comments on Paille's hit, but words are one thing and actions are another. He has shown time and time again this year that he'll be the first one in to stand up for a fellow Bruin and what more can you ask for?
-I'm still smiling over all the uppercuts Johnny Upchuk fed that Hab. I'm sure his arm is tired.
-I've read a few articles stating that the game against the Bruins highlighted the obvious lack of gritty guys currently on the Habs. They've gone the small and skilled route for the most part, and the other night's game showed why this can be a bad idea. More than half of the Bruins roster will willingly drop the gloves and the other half will do it when needed. That's saying something. Anaheim did it like that a few years ago and they won the Cup. Lesson? I think so.
Red Wings come to town tonight. The boys had a day off and should be rested. I'm thinking Tuukka might get the start. Of course even a 4-0 win would seem like a letdown after the game the other night, but it's a good problem to have.
Go B's.

Friday, February 4, 2011

What The Fuck Did They Eat?

What is it about the Stars that pisses the Bruins off? They see them like twice a year and the games always turn out to be insanely physical. I knew something was going on when Campbell switched out with Thornton right on the opening faceoff. He obviously wanted a piece of Ott, and after some digging, I found this. I can see why Campbell wanted Ott. Ott routinely crosses the line and guys don't forget shit like that. He is already hated in Boston from the brawl a few years ago.
Couple things:
-Though I thought the Campbell and Ott fight was a draw, Thornton, McQuaid and Ference all beat the shit out of their respective dance partners. I've said it before but here it goes again: Physical play = victory.
-Tuukka played beautifully in the first and second but definitely got shaky in the third. I thought that the Stars were going to tie it up as the boys went to sleep for the first ten minutes or so. They finally woke up and started playing again, resulting in the eventual win.
-The goaltender interference call on Evil Wheeler was the best/worst blown call of the season. He had set up a perfect screen and wasn't touching the goalie. Goal called back and Wheeler goes to the box. Bullshit.
-This pisses me off: the refs, realizing that they are one extra jab away from totally losing control over the game, dole out ten fucking minute misconducts for two guys that are talking. Now if a Bruin were to look at the ref and say "Hey, I'm going to go to your house, make a sandwich but only eat half of it AND leave your fridge open, fuck your daughter and then kill your dog" I could understand their reasoning. Granted, I'm sure the conversation between Ott and Chara wasn't all sunshine and rainbows, but jesus fucking christ. Dallas loses Ott for ten. Boston loses Chara for ten. That's a great trade for Dallas and a shitty call by the refs.
-Paille will no doubt get some games for his hit. I've watched it several times and I still don't agree with it. Of course, I'm a Boston fan and I saw what Cooke did to Savvy AND HE GOT FUCKING NOTHING. Don't get me started.
-Patty Cake missed the wide open net for the hatter and I'm sure he wants that shot back. I was kind of chuckling because after Marchand put it in, Patty looked like he had taken a bite of a shit sandwich. I'm sure the boys were razzing him about that one.
-Patty/Marchand/Ol' Man Recchi were the best line of the night, again. Their hustle is truly something to see.
Sharks come to town on saturday. The boys should keep rolling. They're setting themselves up nice for playoff positioning, which are about 30 games around the corner. If they keep up this kind of physical play, teams will be scared to face them, they'll get extra room and I'll have a near-constant chub. It's a win-win for all parties.
And although I don't like the guy, I can't deny his skillz (yes, skillz). Check out this clip of Sidney Crosby. Granted it's against a kid, but it shows you the hands this dude has.
Go B's.