Morning Skate: Friday, August 24


Morning Skate: Friday, August 24

FOH (Friend of Haggs) Jesse Spector talks NHL labor and continues to see an NHL Commissioner in Gary Bettman thats going to preside over another work stoppage the third of his illustrious career running hockey.

CSN Compatriot Kevin Kurz speaks with Jumbo Joe Thornton, who is hoping to avoid another lockout while also hedging his bets with a conditional contract to play in Switzerland if there is a lengthy work stoppage.

The Shane Doan decision one of the great summer cliffhangers -- appears to be wrapped up in the Sept. 15 collective bargaining deadline.

Former Bruins head coach Mike Keenan wants back into the NHL. Thats nice, Mike. Dont call us. Well call you.

The Pro Hockey Talk boys say that Henrik Zetterberg grew up enjoying Swedish Snowballs. I cant help but wonder if those snowballs similar to Devil Dogs, Ding Dongs or Yodels.

Gary Bettman said to the Toronto Sun that there is no alternate NHL schedule in the works should there be a lockout and regular season games will be missed. Also, Phoenix is still on the schedule. Insert laugh track here.

For something completely different: David Ortiz tried to cajole his teammates into attending the Johnny Pesky services on the flight home from New York City. Ortiz is one of the last links to the Red Sox teams that used to do things the right way. Its a sad state of affairs over at Fenway.

Bergeron 'feeling good' in return, plays role of third period hero

Bergeron 'feeling good' in return, plays role of third period hero

BOSTON – It certainly feels appropriate that Patrice Bergeron would author a clutch game-winning goal late in the third period of his first game back after missing a week of games with a lower body injury. That Bergeron’s game-winner also arrived in the home opener at TD Garden was an added bonus once No. 37 hammered a shot from the high slot with 1:15 to go in the third period to give the Bruins their first lead of the game in a 2-1 victory over the New Jersey Devils at TD Garden.

The goal arrived courtesy of a nifty setup from linemate Brad Marchand working behind the New Jersey net, and also thanks to David Pastrnak winning a battle in the corner thanks to newfound grit in his game. But the hero of the day again turned out to be No. 37, who went from missing an entire week of action to reclaiming his center role on the top line, playing 16:49 of ice time and winning 13-of-24 face-offs while generating five shot attempts.

“I think it’s pretty obvious with what he did [against the Devils]. After being off for over a week and to come back and have one practice with us then back into the game, he scores a clutch goal for us. That’s what he has always been, a clutch player for us,” said Claude Julien. “I think the third period we gave it a really good push there and I like seeing that from our team that you come out and you don’t play on your heels and you push hard and we went down by a goal but we got our game going like I said and we got a couple goals to win this for us.”

Bergeron modestly said postgame that he was just trying to get into the flow of the game after missing a healthy chunk of time with injury. But he certainly looked like he was vintage form once it crunch time. The timing was perfect as he stepped into the one-timer shot off Marchand’s pass, and beat Cory Schneider amid a strong 34-save performance by the kid from Marblehead.

“I mean I was just trying to, I guess, get my feet wet right away and use the first few shifts to kind of just get, feel good about my positioning and my skating,” said Bergeron. “As the game went on I just felt better. Of course you want to start on a good note, especially at home, and we talked about our home record in the last few years. We wanted to do the job early, especially in the first game, and it’s one step but we’re happy with it.”

It was like Bergeron didn’t miss a single beat after missing the first three games of the season with a lower body injury, and those kinds of instincts and natural ability are things worth marveling about when it comes to the Bruins.

“I was feeling good [on the ice],” said Bergeron. “It would have been nice to ride the wave of the World Cup, but that being said I thought in the first I was trying to be good position ally and kind of get myself going with the first few shifts, and just kind of go from there. Overall I thought that happened.”

While the comeback win was certainly good news for the Bruins, the best news of all is that Bergeron has returned to the lineup with no signs of an injury that surprised everybody right before the start of the regular season.