Bruins fan helps save man's life at practice

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Bruins fan helps save man's life at practice

WILMINGTON, MA Real life collided with the joy of sports on Thursday morning at Bruins training camp as a fan in the Ristuccia Arena stands was removed by emergency medical personnel on a stretcher after collapsing prior to the start of practice.
An off-duty EMT with the Concord Police Department and the Littleton Fire Department, Terry Gardner, was sitting nearby with a few friends about to take in the practice, but he immediately sprung into action along with an off-duty Wilmington police officer right behind him. Bruins trainers Don DelNegro and Derek Repucci also reported to the scene along with several Wilmington police and Fire Department officials and assisted in the individuals emergency treatment for an apparent heart attack.   
I was here with a couple of buddies just watching practice. I heard somebody yell somebody call 911 and I went up and saw a man that was having some labored, erratic breathing. I pulled him down to the floor and I was joined by an off-duty officer, said Gardner. He appeared pulse-less, so at that time I started chest compressions and he started ventilation while yelling for a defibrillator. At that point we delivered one shock, continued CPR and he became more responsive.
He appeared to be responding to stimuli on his way out, he had a pulse and appeared he was breathing. Those were all good signs that he was in better condition than when we found him. It was definitely a little weird having the Bruins watching me give somebody medical attention than me watching them do their thing at practice.
Gardner indicated the individual was going through some kind of cardiac episode that first appeared to be a possible seizure, and CPR was administered as the full arena crowd watched in shock silence. The practice immediately stopped as Bruins players took a knee to solemnly watch the scene as police officer, firefighters and medical personnel began to work on the fallen individual before transporting him to a local hospital via ambulance.  
The last thing they needed was to hear pucks banging on the glass," said Bruins coach Claude Julien. "Out of respect, we just let them do their job.
The EMTs called for the defibrillator stored at Ristuccia Arena, and Gardner indicated they were able to stabilize the individual before carrying down through the stands and wheeling him to the ambulance. Having a defibrillator at a venue like Ristuccia can often be the difference between life or death when heart issues are involved.
The quicker you can do CPR the better in a situation like that... seconds absolutely count, said Gardner. For the situation he had, it happened in a pretty good place. They had the defibrillator on scene, which probably made a world of difference for him. If this happened at home, it might not have been such a good outcome.
There was no word on the mans condition as of Thursday afternoon, but the Bruins players had plenty of appreciation for the quick-acting Bruins fans and first responders that literally saved the mans life.
We were skating around and noticed some people standing up and a big crowd surrounding somebody up there. You dont want to get all sentimental about stuff like this, but it really does put everything else in perspective about how fragile life is, said Bs center Gregory Campbell, who was so interested in police-work that he went for ride-alongs with the Boston Police during the lockout. It takes heroic people to do what they do. It takes a certain type of person to be able to act under pressure like that. Its not pressure that we deal with on a daily basis; its life or death. Thats the most important kind of pressure to operate under.
I have a huge appreciation for how brave and courageous the first responders are; even Donnie DelNegro for going up there and lending a hand. When terrible things like that happen, its important that people come together and help find a solution.
There was no word on the mans condition as of Thursday afternoon after he was rushed away from Ristuccia via ambulance.

Freeman, Coleman lift Falcons past Saints, 45-32

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Freeman, Coleman lift Falcons past Saints, 45-32

NEW ORLEANS - Devonta Freeman practically wore out the Superdome turf with one long gain after another, Tevin Coleman wouldn't be denied near the goal line and the New Orleans Saints hardly looked like the team that made an emotional homecoming nearly 10 years ago to the day.

Cheers turned to boos, and many fans filed out early.

Coleman rushed for three touchdowns, Matt Ryan passed for two TDs and Deion Jones returned an interception 90 yards for a score to help the Atlanta Falcons beat the winless New Orleans Saints 45-32 on Monday night.

"It was real fun. Everybody was doing their job and everybody was playing for each other," Coleman said. "Everything clicked, and we got it done. It's a real big win for us to beat this team here."

The game coincided with New Orleans' celebration of the 10-year anniversary of the Saints' memorable return to the Superdome on Sept. 25, 2006, 13 months after Hurricane Katrina. But there would be no reprise of New Orleans' dominant and emotional 23-3 triumph over Atlanta a decade ago.

The Saints' depleted defense struggled to slow Freeman, who rushed for 152 yards and caught five passes for 55 yards. Coleman also was effective in the passing game out of the backfield, with three receptions for 47 yards to go with his 42 yards rushing.

"We have to stop the run better," Saints coach Sean Payton said. "They were over 200 yards in situations where you knew the run was coming, even at the end of the game."

Ryan finished with 240 yards passing for Atlanta (2-1), which did not turn the ball over and moved into sole possession of first place in the NFC South.

Drew Brees put up his usual big numbers - 376 yards and three TDs passing - and hit tight end Coby Fleener seven times for 109 yards and a TD. But Brees' tipped pass that resulted in Jones' TD return early in the fourth quarter gave the Falcons a 45-25 lead that proved too much for New Orleans to overcome.

Hayes knows he's a good player, wants to silence the critics

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Hayes knows he's a good player, wants to silence the critics

BOSTON, Mass. – There’s a long way to go toward a complete resurrection from last season’s misdeeds, but Jimmy Hayes made a nice little statement that he’s learned some lessons in Boston’s preseason debut. The Bruins lost the game, 3-2, in the shootout to the Columbus Blue Jackets, but Hayes scored one of the two goals for the Black and Gold as one of the few veterans in a very youthful lineup for Boston.

The Hayes goal was a nice give-and-go with Jake DeBrusk at the end of a nice transition play in the second period, and was the highlight of a night playing on the right wing with DeBrusk and center Austin Czarnik. The score and a team-high four shots on net for Hayes represent a good start for what he hopes is a gigantic rebound season after last year’s disappointment.

Clearly Hayes heard some of the unflattering chatter about him on sports talk radio and otherwise last season, and may even understand how his difficult season in his home city of Boston -- whether he actively expressed it to him or not -- might have been a factor in his buddy Jimmy Vesey ultimately choosing New York over Boston.

It appears the former Boston College standout is looking to change the conversation in Boston. 

“Yeah, sure am. I’ve got a lot to come out here and…[there were] a lot of comments about myself, but I know I’m a good player. I got to this level for a reason,” said Hayes, who dropped from 19 goals and 35 points with the Panthers to 13 goals, 29 points and a career-worst minus-12 for the Bruins last season.

“To be able to play at the NHL level and continue to play at that level on a consistent basis is what I expect out of myself. I do it for myself and our teammates, and to help our team win. I’ll continue moving forward.

“It’s funny being the old guy on the line. It’s nice to see those young guys and see how excited they are, and how excited I am to get back out there. That’s what I said to the guys, they still have the jitters and they still have them for the first preseason game. It shows that these guys want it and it’s been a lot of fun skating with those guys. They’ve got a lot of speed and to keep pushing the pace. Trying to keep up with them has been a lot of fun.”

There is still a long way to go for the 26-year-old winger, and his willingness to stick around the danger areas on Monday night was a welcomed one for a Bruins team that needs his 6-foot-6 body in front of the net. Hayes paid the price with stitches and a fat lip after taking a Dalton Prout high-stick to the mouth in front of the Columbus net that went uncalled on a Bruins PP at the end of the second period.

That’s all part of the big man’s game on the ice, however. It’s also the kind of battle and determined fight that Hayes will need to show much more consistently in his second season with the hometown Bruins if he’s truly looking to bounce-back from last year’s mediocre performance.