BruinsCanadiens: 5 from the First

BruinsCanadiens: 5 from the First

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.comBOSTON Here are five thoughts -- with a bonus --from the first period with the Bruins leading the Canadiens by a 2-0 score after the first 20 minutes of playoff-style hockey at the TD Garden.1)As theyre beginning to do in every big game this season, Patrice Bergeron, Mark Recchi and Brad Marchand are injecting themselves into the game as factors. Three shots on net for the line and the games biggest play as an ice-breaker: great puck movement by Mark Recchi and Patrice Bergeron into the offensive zone and then a perfect pass from Bergeron to Marchand rushing toward the net for the first goal. Thats Marchands sixth goal in the last nine games. Bonus points for Mike Felger sitting next to me, so I could point out exactly how Bergeron made the play happen with a brilliant, playmaking pass. 2)Some awfully juicy rebounds being opened up by Carey Price in a shaky first period. Price allowed a shot to pop straight up into the air that allowed Dennis Seidenberg to slam home the rebound after P.K. Subban missed on a swing with his stick in front of the net. Price has looked shaky, and then he drew a penalty at the end of the period when he crosschecked Milan Lucic twice in the back during a Boston PP at the end of the first.3)The two Bs goals arrived 12 seconds apart and tied the Bruins quickest goal-scoring bunch of the season. The Bs have also twice scored goals 13 seconds apart and have shown a propensity in games to ride momentum and take advantage of a team that goes back on their heels a bit after one score. Thats a good quality to have for a hockey team.4)Four shots on net and four hits by Zdeno Chara in the first period in a strong showing after Chara was the guy shoved by Max Pacioretty after the overtime collapse in Montreal the last time these two teams played. Chara is responding where it matters most: on the ice. 5)Nathan Horton is engaged and playing hard, but hes really in a battle over his hands. He had a perfect pass thrown to him by David Krejci in a 2-on-1 situation that could have buried the Habs by a 3-0 score here in the first, but Horton needed to reload the puck on his stick and allowed Price to get back into the play and make the save.6) Really like the way the Bruins are playing. Forechecking with a purpose and nobody is giving up the blue line without a fight when Montreal is breaking into the zone. That is playoff hockey.

Morning Skate: Larry Robinson parts ways with Sharks

Morning Skate: Larry Robinson parts ways with Sharks


Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while refraining from shoving any world leaders today.

*Larry Robinson and the San Jose Sharks are parting after working together for five seasons, per FOH (Friend of Haggs) Kevin Kurz.

*Speaking of Kurz, he also has a Sharks mailbag on which players are most likely to be traded out of San Jose during the offseason. Somebody has got to go, and you’d think it would be somebody without much tread left on the tires.

*Moving on to other topics, Anaheim Ducks center Ryan Kesler said that losing a Game 6 in the Western Conference Finals to the Nashville Predators was the “toughest” loss of his career. I don’t see how this is possible. You see, Kesler is no slouch at falling short. In fact, he’s a tremendous loser, having dropped a Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final at home in 2011 as a member of the Vancouver Canucks, and also having lost a Gold Medal Game for Team USA at the hands of Sidney Crosby and Canada in 2010 in overtime that was also played in Vancouver. It took a simple Google search to find an actual postgame video of Kesler crying into his hockey glove on the bench in the aftermath of Game 7 vs. the Bruins. So, pardon me if I’m not buying Kesler talking about a conference finals loss as the worst of his career when he was one home win away from being a Stanley Cup champion in Game 7, and proceeded to lose like he’s done many, many times in the most important games of his career. Dude, you’ve been through tougher losses. Trust me on that one.  

*The idea of trading Alex Ovechkin might be gaining some traction with the Capitals fan base, but it doesn’t seem to be based on reality at this point.

*The pride of Melrose, Mass, Conor Sheary, delivered in Game 7 for the Penguins as they return to the Stanley Cup Final in back-to-back seasons.

*Bobby Ryan said his strategy for success in the playoffs, at least in part, was staying off the phone. Maybe he ought to try that a bit more during the regular season.

*Congrats to the folks at NBC for another successful Red Nose Day that featured a reunion of the “Love Actually” cast among other things.