Marchand 'hasn't missed a beat' to start season

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Marchand 'hasn't missed a beat' to start season

Most people had focused on how Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton would start the season given that they didnt play in Europe during the 119-day NHL lockout, and wondered if it would affect their first few weeks of the abbreviated regular season.

But Bruins winger Brad Marchand was in the same boat as Lucic and Horton after only skating a couple of times a week during the four-month period players were being locked out of work. The Bs agitator was skating periodically in Boston and Halifax while bouncing back and forth between the two places, but was certainly a question mark heading into training camp.

Some wondered if hed be able to keep up with Patrice Bergeron and Tyler Seguin after those two players both skated in Switzerland, but its fair to say all of those questions have been answered. Marchand, along with Lucic, leads the Bruins with two goals scored after two games, and has the teams only power play goals through the first three games of the season.

Were happy with the way things are progressing on the power play, said Marchand. We just need to keep working at it.

The Nose Face Killahs coach is of the belief that Marchands 5-foot-9, 183-pound is one of the things that allowed him to leap into the action without trouble. His top skating speed and willingness to throw his body into the battle areas havent hurt matters either.

The only thing I said about guys like Marchand is that theyre smaller, and they seem to be able to catch up a lot quicker. They dont have as much body mass to carry around, said Claude Julien. We werent as concerned about Brad as we were about our bigger bodies. They were the biggest challenge and theyve answered the call.

Brad is a guy that has always been in pretty good shape and we know hes pretty dynamic in his own way. His preparation to games and his conditioning was good enough that he seems like he hasnt missed a beat.

Marchand is like most of the Bruins after an encouraging three-game start in that they havent missed a beat at all.

Backes: Bruins were ‘wounded’ after ugly Detroit loss

Backes: Bruins were ‘wounded’ after ugly Detroit loss

BRIGHTON, Mass – It certainly sounded like there were some things that made the Wednesday night loss in Detroit a little different for the Bruins.

The Bruins media corps conducted postgame interviews in the hallway rather than in the visiting dressing room after what must have been a combustible atmosphere immediately following the shootout defeat. 

There was also evidence of anger in the visitor’s dressing room at Joe Louis Arena, according to reports, with a door off its hinges when the media was able to get a look inside the dressing room area.

David Backes confirmed something was different about the loss after blowing a pair of three-goal leads, and failing to follow up their dreadful no-show vs. the Islanders with a winning performance against another bad team in Detroit. The B’s forward said the plane ride home from Detroit was solemn and quiet, and that it was clear the Bruins team was “wounded” after a crushing loss.

“Both [losses] can be great lessons if we learn from it, and neither was very enjoyable. That was probably the quietest I think our guys were all year on that plane ride home from Detroit,” said Backes. “To me, that’s a great sign that it hit us in the heart, and it hit us where it really mattered. We’re thinking about how we can turn the tide and thinking about we can be victorious the next time out.

“We had the lead, and in a lot of instances you’re expecting, as you should, to come out of there with two points. We’re at the time in the season where wins need to be garnered and taken home.

“There were a lot of aspects where we should have grabbed the game back. When you feel like you’ve had a lot of opportunities to take the game and you don’t do it, it’s not a good feeling. I was reflecting on that during a very quiet team plane ride back from Detroit, and it seemed pretty clear that the whole team was feeling wounded. I think it’s a good sign that guys were feeling that way, and that means they’re going to do everything in their power to not have that feeling again.”

The words are encouraging from a 32-year-old natural leader in Backes, who has seen good times and bad as captain of the St. Louis Blues in his 10-year NHL career. But the proof is ultimately on the ice where the Bruins have games against the Blackhawks and Penguins coming up and face some very stiff tests coming off a couple of losses against the worst teams in the East that exposed Black and Gold fragility at this point in the season. 


 

After knee injury, Beleskey set to return for Bruins vs. Blackhawks

After knee injury, Beleskey set to return for Bruins vs. Blackhawks

BRIGHTON, Mass – The Bruins, looking for a spark after terrible, back-to-back losses to the New York Islanders and Detroit Red Wings, are hoping the return of Matt Beleskey from a knee injury can help provide the inspiration. 

The blue-collar left winger has missed the past 23 games with a torn MCL in his right knee suffered in early December against the Buffalo Sabres, but now he’s easing back into the lineup on the fourth line in Friday night’s showdown with the Chicago Blackhawks.

Beleskey was skating with Dominic Moore and Austin Czarnik on the fourth line at morning skate at Warrior Ice Arena and should be expected to throw a few hard hits and play with some intensity in his return.

“I’m ready to go and excited to get back out there,” said Beleskey, who has been skating with the team for roughly a week after giving the knee sufficient time to heal. “I’ve just got to keep it simple and do what I do well: Be hard on pucks, take the body and just try and find your groove. You don’t want to expect too much in your first game back, but you just want to be able to contribute.

“’I’ve been saving [the pent-up energy] for a while, so I’m ready to get back out there and hopefully provide a spark for us.”

The Beleskey return also provides the player with a bit of a reset button after a slow start to the season that saw him with two goals and five points along with a minus-6 rating in 24 games played for the Black and Gold prior to his injury. Here are the projected line combos and D-pairs against the Blackhawks based on morning skate today:

Marchand-Bergeron-Vatrano

Schaller-Krejci-Pastrnak

Spooner-Nash-Backes/Hayes

Beleskey/Blidh-Moore-Czarnik

 

Chara-Carlo

Krug-McQuaid

Morrow-Liles

 

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