Rask loses battle of goaltenders in Winnipeg

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Rask loses battle of goaltenders in Winnipeg

WINNIPEG It wasnt a bad outing at all for Tuukka Rask.

The Bruins backup goaltender stopped 33 shots and was spectacular through portions of the third period while he held the Winnipeg attack at bay, but the moral of the story was that the young netminder was one mistake worse than Jets goalie Ondrej Pavelec in a 2-1 loss at the MTS Centre.

Rask was forced into being spectacular if he wanted to win, but he was instead very good behind a team that couldn't score enough going for him.

It was a well-played game from both sides. They definitely played us hard. Both goaltenders were outstanding and Rask did a great job of making saves to keep us in the game at times, said Claude Julien. I thought he was good. When you dont play on a regular basis youve got to give him a chance to get into it. He made some unbelievable saves at the end to keep us in there.

The other goaltender was very good at the other end as well, so it was a good goaltender battle tonight.

There were defensive breakdowns by Joe Corvo in front of the net in both goals surrendered by Rask in defeat, but there was some level of culpability on the Bs goalies part as well. The first goal came off an Andrew Ladd rush down the left side of the ice that saw Corvo back way off the attacker giving him plenty of time and space to measure his shot.

Ladd fired a short side up high that completely fooled Rask and put the Bruins into a hole. Perhaps Rask was rusty, given the length of time since his last start, but it was surely a stop that hed like to have back.

You could tell we werent as fresh or sharp as we have been lately, said Rask. But we had plenty of chances and Pavelec played a great game. A loss is always a loss and we just need to move forward now.

Thats the way things stayed for the remainder of two periods through some heavy offensive threats by Ladd, Evander Kane and the hustling Jim Slater, but Boston finally broke through with a little offense for Rask in the third period.

Thornton redirected a puck thrown by Daniel Paille at the net, and gave Boston a whiff of potential victory. Unfortunately things opened right back up for Winnipeg. The Jets went right on the power play due to a David Krejci roughing penalty, and Bryan Little cruised through to finish off a face-off victory with a game-winning goal from the backhanded to the forehand.

Rask was protecting pass in front on the 2-on-1 rush led by Little, and the Winnipeg forward pushed a shot through the five-hole to the delight of frenzied home crowd for the Jets. The Bruins still had most of the third period and Milan Lucic had a handful of golden chances including one shot that bounced off the helmet of Pavelec in front of the net but Rask and Boston ended up falling in a defeat that dropped his personal record to 4-4-1 on the season.

It looked like it was going to be a one-goal game all the way to the end, said Rask. We played a pretty good game, but you cant win them all right? I hate losing, but you win some and you lose some. Youve just got to shake it off.

The Bruins will shake things off Thursday night with a showdown against an upstart Florida Panthers team serving as yet another Eastern Conference challenge for the reigning champs.

Bruins select center Trent Frederic with 29th pick in 2016 NHL Draft

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Bruins select center Trent Frederic with 29th pick in 2016 NHL Draft

BUFFALO – The Bruins went off the board to make their second choice in the first round, and selected big, gritty center Trent Frederic from the U.S. National Team Development Program.  Frederic was ranked 47th among North American skaters by the NHL Central Scouting Bureau, and is ultimately viewed as a solid bottom-six two-way center with limited offensive ability.

A nice Bruins-style player to be sure, but also the kind of player that can easily be picked in the second, or third, round rather than with the 29thpick in the first round. It’s pretty clear the B’s were hoping to package up the 29th pick along with a prospect to acquire a top-4 defenseman, and that they didn’t have many designs on actually choosing a player.

That led to a surprised Frederic, who was happy to be a first round pick if not a little blown away by his good NHL fortune.

“I guess I was a little surprised. If you could hear my whole family's reaction then you get the gist of it,” said Frederic, who listed David Backes and Justin Abdelkader as the NHL players he most models his game after in his career. “They were pumped, and I am pumped. As a player I’m a two-way physical player that’s good with the puck.

“I’ve had some tournaments in Boston, and some family vacations there. I visited Boston University when I thought about going there, and I’ve been to Fenway Park and TD Garden. It’s one of my favorite cities.”

The Frederic pick might have been off the beaten path a bit, but it was a pretty special selection for a number of other reasons: Frederic was the record-setting 12th US-born player taken in the first round, and the fifth player taken in the 2016 first round from the St. Louis area. The Bruins have to hope that he develops into a more dangerous, effective player during his college hockey days at Wisconsin, and that he feels a little less like the Bruins reaching for players in the first round for the second draft in a row. 

Photo via Joe Haggerty

Charlie McAvoy tweeted he hates the Bruins 'so much' in 2013

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Charlie McAvoy tweeted he hates the Bruins 'so much' in 2013

Tweet hunters dug up an old message from a Charlie McAvoy proclaiming his hatred for the Boston Bruins. McAvoy, of course, was drafted 14th by the Bruins in the 2016 NHL Draft.

The tweet read, "I hate the bruins so much" before it was quickly deleted.

I'm sure this will go over well for Bruins fans, even though you really can't blame McAvoy. He was just 15 at the time and a fan of the Rangers, who went down 3-0 in the playoffs against the Bruins.

As fans, we can all relate to that feeling.

Bruins take BU defenseman Charlie McAvoy with the 14th pick in 2016 NHL Draft

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Bruins take BU defenseman Charlie McAvoy with the 14th pick in 2016 NHL Draft

BUFFALO – The Bruins took their highest-rated defenseman when the pick came to them at the No. 14 spot, and they selected Boston University defenseman Charlie McAvoy, who tore up Hockey East as the young player in college hockey last season.

The 18-year-old Charlie McAvoy had three goals and 25 points in37 games for the Terriers while skating in a pairing with Bruins prospect Matt Grzelcyk, and showed off the kind of elite skating and offensive skills that will play well at the NHL level. It was thought the Bruins would take McAvoy or fellow BU-recruit Dante Fabbro at the 14th spot when they held onto the pick, but that was perhaps shaken a little bit when Jakub Chychrun fell all the way down to their spot.

The Bruins stuck with their scouting instincts and took the offensively gifted McAvoy, who profiles as a next generation NHL player with his sturdy six foot, 208-pound frame and ability to skate like the wind. He was understandably excited, and even said that he’s come around from hating some of the Boston teams as a native New Yorker after spending the year at Boston University.

“I’m at a loss for words. It’s an unbelievable feeling, and I’m just so happy to be a part of the Bruins. I’ve gotten close to [the Bruins] in the past year. I’m sure some of my friends back home aren’t happy I’m cutting the ties with New York sports, but Boston is an unbelievable city with great sports and great people. I’m glad to be staying there,” said McAvoy. “You grow up and taught not to like [Boston teams] because of the rivalry. But I've got a Red Sox hat and that’s the first step. Now I'm got that Bruins jersey and it’s pretty cool. I’ll just keep going, but I don’t know if I could ever be a Pats fan, but we’ll see."

Give McAvoy a little time and perhaps he’ll come around to the right side of the New England Patriots argument after some years spent with the Black and Gold.  

Joe Haggerty can be followed on Twitter: @HacksWithHaggs