Bruins great Middleton headlines Mass. Hockey Hall class

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Bruins great Middleton headlines Mass. Hockey Hall class

Former Boston Bruins great Rick Middleton is still waiting for his call to the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto after a dominant career in Boston, but Nifty has collected another honor while he waits.

Middleton headlines the newest class of the Massachusetts Hockey Hall of Fame set to be inducted Nov. 14 at Lombardos in Randolph. Joining Middleton are Boston College All-American and US Olympian Tom Red Martin (Cambridge), Brown All-American and US Olympian Don Whiston (Stoneham), Boston College All-American Ed Butch Songin (Walpole), UNH and US Womens National Hockey Coach Karen Kay (Marlborough), Salem Evening News hockey scribe Bill Kipouras, ECAC and NCAA official Tom Lynch (Norwood) and Massachusetts Hockey Builders Charles Mike Tenney (Duxbury), Alan Doc Ashare (Newton) and Billerica Youth Hockey legend Joe Ferraro.

Middleton is the last Bruins player to win the Lady Byng Trophy and finished with 448 goals and 998 points in just over 1,000 NHL games with the Big Bad Bruins and the New York Rangers over a 14-year NHL career.

Past inductees read like a whos who of hockey heroes who over the past 50 years have helped position Massachusetts as the hotbed of hockey in the United States. Per a press release from the Mass Hockey Hall of Fame, the list is stock full of Olympic and Paralympic heroes, college and NHL stars, female pioneers, high school and college coaching legends, distinguished referees and media icons, as well as a cadre of dedicated, behind-the-scenes grassroots builders who have tirelessly spent decades furthering the development of the game in Massachusetts.

Inductees to the Massachusetts Hockey Hall of Fame are chosen on the basis of accomplishments in the game of hockey, sportsmanship, character, and contributions to his or her teams or organizations in college, amateur or professional hockey, or on international teams representing the United States. Each nominee must have distinguished himself or herself by exceptional performance and outstanding character reflecting favorably upon the game of hockey in

Massachusetts, be in good public standing in the community, an appropriate role model for young hockey players and an exemplary representative of the game of hockey. Massachusetts Hockey, Inc., is a not-for-profit tax exempt organization which serves as the affiliate association of USA Hockey, Inc., and is the official governing body for the sport of hockey in Massachusetts. As such, its purposes and objectives are to develop, advance and encourage participation in the sport of hockey; to develop and encourage sportsmanship between all players for the betterment of their physical and social well-being; to develop and improve the standards of the sport; and to educate and train players, coaches, referees, managers, administrators and parents. For more information, visit www.masshockey.com.

A limited number of tickets (60) to the 2012 Hall of Fame Induction Dinner are available and may be purchased by contacting Jim Prior at jimprior@easternjunior.com or (781) 938-4400.

McIntyre still building and earning trust of B's coaching staff

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McIntyre still building and earning trust of B's coaching staff

BRIGHTON, Mass -- It hasn’t been an easy road for Bruins rookie goaltender Zane McIntyre since getting called back up by Boston a few weeks ago.

The 24-year-old netminder is trying to give the B’s top-level goaltending while earning the trust of the Bruins coaching staff, and adjusting to the sporadic playing time that goes along with playing understudy to a No. 1 netminder like Tuukka Rask. The three goals allowed in the third period of Sunday afternoon’s 5-1 loss to the Penguins didn’t look good on paper, but really there wasn’t much McIntyre could do with the defense totally breaking down in front of him during a 12-shot barrage in the final 20 minutes.

The 3.95 goals against average and .860 save percentage certainly look like a little frightening for the first-year goalie, but the truth is there’s going to be some bumps as he adjusts to life as a backup for the first time.

“[The adjustment] is mostly between the ears, to be honest,” said McIntyre. “I have confidence in my physical abilities and I know what I can do, and what makes my game successful. So right now it’s just building confidence every day in practice and staying persistent, staying with it. I know good things are going to happen when you surround yourself with good people, and the biggest thing is battling every day and making sure I’m contributing to the team.”

McIntyre will certainly have to be sharp if he’s put back in the crease on Tuesday night against the Red Wings after Rask exited from Sunday’s loss in the second period with symptoms of a migraine. The Bruins top goalie missed practice on Monday while getting himself checked out medically, and there’s a chance he could be out if the symptoms are in any way related to the Roman Josi shot he took off his neck last week.

“I’m just taking it day-by-day to be honest. That’s what I’ve always done in the past, and I’m just trying to build up confidence every day,” said McIntyre, who had been lights out in Providence prior to getting the call to Boston. “We’ll just see what happens and roll with it.”

That’s a challenge McIntyre will certainly be up for in a different way than Sunday’s mop-up duty, but it remains to be seen just how steady-footed the Bruins will be about their goalie situation if Rask is expected to miss any time this week.