Celtics up against familiar face in Erden


Celtics up against familiar face in Erden

CLEVELAND The last time the Boston Celtics played Cleveland, former Celtic Semih Erden didn't play (coaches decision).

Tonight, he's in the starting lineup.

It has been that kind of season for Erden, who is in the lineup due to a wrist injury to Anderson Varejao.

Erden says facing his former team is exciting, but a chance to play - period - is what he's really pumped up for.

For the season, Erden is averaging 3.3 points and 2.6 rebounds per game.

But as a starter, he averages 5.5 points and four rebounds.

Just as important, the Cavs are 3-3 with Erden in the starting lineup compared to 10-15 when he's not with the first unit.

"It's good to play, because I need to play," Erden told CSNNE.com. "Right now, Andy's out so I have a chance to grow, to play better and help my teammates. So I'm happy."

Also keeping him happy, Erden says, is the knowledge right now that he will play decent minutes every night.

"For me, I like to know I will play," he said. "Mentally, it's different. Mentally, you can prepare yourself better, every time. This is good for me; I like it."

Blackhawks edge past Bruins with late goal in 1-0 win


Blackhawks edge past Bruins with late goal in 1-0 win

BOSTON -- Anybody looking for an emotional, high-energy response from the Bruins after back-to-back putrid losses to the Islanders and Red Wings didn’t get it on Friday night against the Chicago Blackhawks at TD Garden.

Instead the Bruins had plenty of shots with zero goals to show for it, and then gave up a goal to Marian Hossa on a nifty tic-tac-toe passing play to give the Blackhawks a 1-0 regulation win over the Black and Gold. It was the third straight loss for a Bruins team that continues to sink down in the playoff picture at a time of years when the results are the only thing that matters.

The defeat could also very well cost B’s head coach Claude Julien his job as a lifeless Bruins organization looks for any way to get out of the mud they’ve been stuck in for the last six weeks.

The Bruins and Blackhawks couldn’t crack the scoreboard for the first 50 minutes in regulation, and the genuine scoring chances were few and far between for both sides.

Tim Schaller and Patrice Bergeron had scoring chances down low in the first period, and Joe Morrow had a breakaway turned away by Blackhawks backup goalie Scott Darling early in the proceedings. But the scoring chances and sustained attack really began to dry up in the second period, and it became a series of one-and-done shots on net for both sides.

As one would expect both goalies were stellar with Darling putting together a 16-save performance in the first period, and Tuukka Rask turning away several Blackhawks chances including an Artem Anisimov wrist shot off the rush with just a couple of minutes to go in the third period. Rask finished with 21 saves, and Darling finished with 30 saves in a big win for the Chicago backup netminder.