Tardif happy to chip in during first NHL game


Tardif happy to chip in during first NHL game

TORONTO It probably wasnt the first NHL shift that 28-year-old rookie Jamie Tardif had envisioned, but it also meant that he was officially in the books.

Tardif was on the ice for all of about six seconds in the first period when Lane MacDermid and Mark Fraser dropped the gloves for the first of two competitive bouts in Bostons 1-0 win over the Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre.

Yeah, that first shift didnt go over so well, said Tardif, who estimated there were 20 family and friends in the ACC stands including a billet family he lived with for five years in Peterborough. But I got the bugs out and the jitters. I was fairly nervous the entire game, but thats pretty normal being in my hometown and my first NHL game. It was to be expected and Im just happy we got the win.

Perhaps it was the best introduction for a Toronto kid that was making his NHL debut after seven long minor league hockey seasons and 449 games in the AHL and ECHL before he saw how they do it in the big leagues.

Obviously I wasnt expecting to score in my first game, said Tardif. It helped calm me down a little bit that Im not an 18 or 19-year-old kid and I got more comfortable as the game went on.

Tardif did end up getting a little bit of time in the game and finished with a shot on net and a pair of hits in eight shifts and 5:03 of time in the game. The shot was a decent tester off a Johnny Boychuk pass that got the journeyman on the scoresheet, but he also showed some good grittiness levels skating on the fourth line.

It was Tardif that lined up Phil Kessel in the neutral zone in the second period and spun him around like a top, and that body contact led to Round 2 of MacDermid and Fraser in the Bs offensive end. The Providence Bruins forward knows its those kinds of plays that will help him fit in with a fourth line comprised of Gregory Campbell and MacDermid for the time being.

I happened to catch Kessel and then MacDermid came out of nowhere for that second fight, said Tardif. Its a part of the game. Its one of the things that I need to bring into the lineup.

Tardif just hopes he gets more chances to show what he can do in the Bruins lineup, but that will all depend on the health status of guys like Daniel Paille and Brad Marchand moving forward.

Thursday, Oct. 27: Chara top D-man on All-Graybeard team


Thursday, Oct. 27: Chara top D-man on All-Graybeard team

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while saying RIP Vine but not really feeling it since it’s a rabbit hole I never really delved down into. 

*Down Goes Brown celebrates the “NHL’s old guys”, and yes, that means a gratuitous shout out to Zdeno Chara as the top defenseman on the All-Graybeard squad. 

*Hampus Lindholm has signed a long term deal with the Anaheim Ducks, so now that deal leaves everybody to wonder who is leaving the Anaheim roster in the eventual salary cap crunch. It will be interesting to see if this hastens any Cam Fowler trade talk as far as the Bruins are concerned because it looks like they need the help.  

*Pro Hockey Talk has the Oilers off to their best start since the Wayne Gretzky Era and people in Edmonton finally getting to see the hockey they’ve been waiting for over the past few years. 

*In honor of the Halloween season that we’re in, here are a few cool and scary goalie masks with a bit of spooky flair. 

*Arizona Coyotes GM John Chayka is confident that his young team is going to rebound after a rough start to the season. 

*Speaking of creative uniforms, it’s a most wonderful time of the year for hockey when they bust out their Oktoberfest sweaters. 

*For something completely different: this matchup of Peanuts and Stranger Things hits all the right notes for fans of both. 


Goalie update: Tuukka Rask dealing with hamstring AND groin injury?


Goalie update: Tuukka Rask dealing with hamstring AND groin injury?

While the good news is that it doesn’t appear that Tuukka Rask is dealing with a knee injury, there are still some significant muscular issues to work with concerning his left leg. 

According to former Bruins defenseman and NHL analyst Aaron Ward on CSN’s Great American Hockey Show podcast, the Bruins franchise goaltender has been dealing with a hamstring issue that’s also become a hamstring and groin issue as he tried to play through in the first week of the season. Rask clearly tweaked something in his left leg opening night against the Columbus Blue Jackets, missed the Saturday night loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs and then appeared to aggravate the injury in last week’s win over the New Jersey Devils. 

According to Ward, it’s hamstring and groin issues for Rask as the Bruins attempt to survive without him while potentially working toward a possible return for the Finnish netminder this weekend vs. the Red Wings. Rask hasn’t skated with the Bruins since finishing out the 2-1 win over the Devils last Thursday night, and tweaking the problematic left leg in the process. 

“What I was told is that it was left leg, and that at first it was hamstring and now it’s possibly hamstring and groin,” said Ward to CSN Bruins Insider Joe Haggerty on the Great American Hockey Show podcast. “You’re always concerned when you’re a goalie and it’s your legs, right? It’s the push-off. The crazy part was watching it on video where the shoot came from the left side and went wide, and the next time he injures it shot comes from the same spot, misses it wide and [Rask] is in the exact same position wincing.

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“I think [the Bruins] are smart rather than trying to play a guy that’s 90, 80 or 70 percent, whatever it is, to just get it over with. Endure the short term pain to get the greater gain, and that’s having Rask in there. There’s no greater endorsement to keep him out than seeing the [bad losses without him] because you need a healthy Tuukka to let the rest of the team settle.”

It’s been disastrous without Rask, of course, as the Bruins have allowed 11 goals in back-to-back losses to the Wild and Rangers with rookies Malcolm Subban and Zane McIntyre between the pipes, and Anton Khudobin out for three weeks while sporting a cast on his right hand in the last B’s game at TD Garden. 

Meanwhile, Rask (3-0-0, 1.67 goals-against average and a .947 save percentage) is trying to heal and time it perfectly so he returns once he’s past the danger of potentially blowing out the muscles in his left leg and making the situation even worse than it already might be. 

Ward also discusses his relationship with "Toucher & Rich" and the "Cuts for a Cause" charitable event that he helped start.