Bruins prospect Knight sent down to ECHL


Bruins prospect Knight sent down to ECHL

Its been a difficult season for Bruins prospect Jared Knight in his first full pro campaign, and that adversity continued on Wednesday. The Bruins 2010 second round pick was reassigned to the ECHL South Carolina StingRays from the AHLs Providence Bruins along with fellow forward Tyler Randell. Knight has missed the last 27 AHL games with Providence due to hamstring problems, and the 20-year-old has truly never got on track this season.
Knight has played in only two games, and is scoreless with a minus-2 during that span. Providence coach Bruce Cassidy admitted several weeks ago that the skilled power forward has experienced a few setbacks in attempting to return from injury. But Knight was skating with the P-Bruins prior to the holidays, and appears close to playing in games.
So rather than a straight demotion from the AHL club, the trip to South Carolina likely gives Knight a chance to knock off the rust while working himself back into full playing shape. Indications are that Knight could be back with Providence as quickly as next week after getting his feet wet in a few games.

While fellow 2010 second round pick Ryan Spooner has enjoyed pretty good success (6 goals and 16 points in 23 games) during his first few months of pro hockey both he and Knight have been synonymous in Boston prospect lists since getting drafted in the same round at the Staples Center three years ago it might be that Knight is best served getting away from the understandable frustration hes felt in Providence over the last few months.
Knight was hopeful heading into the year that hed be in the mix for an invite to Boston Bruins training camp whenif the NHL regular season begins, but that isnt going to happen after struggling with his health. Instead forwards like Spooner, Chris Bourque and Jordan Caron should get the call to audition for the third line spot after enjoying solid first halves to their respective seasons in Providence.

Isaiah Thomas not among Eastern Conference All-Star starters

Isaiah Thomas not among Eastern Conference All-Star starters

BOSTON – For all that Isaiah Thomas has accomplished in his NBA career, the hallmark of his rise from the last player picked six years ago to where he is now is nothing short of amazing.

Thomas will be an All-Star for the second year in a row, but it’s not going to be as a starter.

The NBA announced the starting five for the Eastern and Western Conferences, respectively, Thursday night.

Despite not being named a starter, there is still a lot to be excited about the season Thomas is having.

The 27-year-old leads the Celtics in scoring with a 28.7 points per game average which ranks fourth in the NBA.

His 10.1 points scored in the fourth quarter leads all players in the NBA. And if he can maintain that average, he will become the first player since the statistic began being recorded in 1997 to average double digit points in the final quarter of play.

While most players try to be low-key in their desire to be an All-Star, Thomas has made it known to anyone within earshot that he deserved to not just be an all-star, but an all-star starter.

His head coach Brad Stevens agreed.

“He’s having a hell of a year,” Stevens said.

But not enough to earn what would have been a starting spot on the East all-star team which would have made him the first Celtic to do so since Kevin Garnett in 2013.


Patriots sign TE Rob Housler to future contract


Patriots sign TE Rob Housler to future contract

FOXBORO -- The Patriots have signed free-agent tight end Rob Housler to a future contract. The 6-foot-5, 250-pound target last played for the Bears but was released at the end of training camp.

Housler won't be eligible to participate with the Patriots during the postseason, but he will be available for the offseason program and training camp leading up to the 2017 campaign. 

Housler taken in the third round by the Cardinals with the 69th overall selection in 2011. In 65 career games, he has 109 catches for 1,166 yards and one touchdown. 

The Patriots may have been intrigued by Housler's skill set last summer when he caught one pass for 52 yards -- making two Patriots defenders miss in the process -- during a preseason game at Gillette Stadium. The Patriots and Bears held joint training camp practices in August that would have given Patriots coaches and scouts a closer look at everything Housler has to offer as a player. 

Housler was one of the better athletes at the NFL Scouting Combine in 2011, running a 4.55-second 40-yard dash (fastest among tight ends), posting a 6.9-second three-cone drill, and recording a 37-inch vertical leap.

Bill Belichick and his staff hit big on a future-contract signing two years ago when a running back with a significant injury history was available to scoop up at the behest of then-assistant to the coaching staff Michael Lombardi. Since then, the Patriots still have never lost with Dion Lewis in uniform.