BruinsKings: 5 from the Second

BruinsKings: 5 from the Second

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.comLOS ANGELES Here are five thoughts from the second period of Bruins and Kings at the Staples Center with the Bs trailing Los Angeles by a 1-0 score after 40 minutes of play.1)A little more life for the Bruins in the second period, but still not much sustained offense. Claude Julien mixed up the lines again at the end of the period, and moved Michal Ryder up with David Krejci and Milan Lucic while Tyler Seguin was centering Nathan Horton and Blake Wheeler. 2)As expected some real struggles with the power play without Marc Savard there to help distribute and make plays. Bostons best chance was a Zdeno Chara one-timer from the right point that zinged off the outside of the left post with plenty of the net open to shoot at. Patrice Bergeron had frozen Jonathan Quick with a nice shot fake at the left point.3)It appears the LA Kings have adopted a game plan well see more and more of with Steve Kampfer: the Kings are hitting Kampfer hard every chance they can each time he handles the puck. Dustin Brown blasted him up high with a shoulder to the head area in the corner that shook Kampfer up, and slowed him down a little in a few shifts after that. The more success Kampfer has, the more hes going to be met with that punishing physicality.4)Dustin Brown with five hits as he is running around making himself a physical factor. Hes a pretty impressive player.5)Nine giveaways by the Bruins through the first couple of periods tonight thats not going to get it done managing the puck.6)Great job by the Staples Center organist tonight as hes played everything ranging from the Beatles I am the Walrus to the Cantina Band theme song from Star Wars. Thats quite a show of range.

Bruins sign pair of draft picks, including BC's Fitzgerald, to entry-level deals

Bruins sign pair of draft picks, including BC's Fitzgerald, to entry-level deals

Amidst the current turmoil at the NHL level, the Bruins delivered a little good news about the future today . . . with more potentially to come. 

The Bruins announced the signing of a pair of prospects/former draft picks -- Boston College forward Ryan Fitzgerald and defenseman Emil Johansson -- to entry-level contracts that will kick in next season. There will likely be another wave of signings with the Bruins from the amateur ranks once players like Charlie McAvoy, Anders Bjork and Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson are finished up with their college teams in the NCAA tournament, though it remains to be seen exactly which players end up taking the NHL plunge. 

There was some uncertainty as to whether Fitzgerald would definitely sign with Boston after completing his senior season at BC, but he will immediately join the Providence Bruins on an amateur tryout agreement after signing a two-year deal. Johansson will join the Bruins on a Professional Tryout Agreement with a three-year entry level deal that kicks off next season. 

The 5-foot-10, 177-pound Fitzgerald was an alternate captain for BC in 2016-17, with 12 goals and 19 assists for 31 points in 34 games with 56 penalty minutes and a plus-14 rating. Fitzgerald is also the son of Billerica native and former Bruins forward Tommy Fitzgerald, who took to Twitter on Friday to voice his overwhelming pride over his oldest signing an NHL contract. He was a fourth-round pick by the Bruins in 2013.

Johansson, 20, completed his first season with Djurgardens IF of the Swedish Hockey League in 2016-17, establishing career highs with 7 goals and 10 assists for 17 points with 26 penalty minutes in 49 games. The B's selected him in the seventh round in 2014.

Rask given maintenance day as Bruins return to practice

Rask given maintenance day as Bruins return to practice

BRIGHTON -- The Bruns got back to work on Friday, but were without their No. 1 goaltender for practice at Warrior Ice Arena ahead of their biggest game of the season Saturday night against the New York Islanders at the Barclays Center 

Tuukka Rask was given a maintenance day after playing three games in four days, and Matt Beleskey was also missing “on family leave." The off-day for Rask could have very well about getting away from the rink mentally as it was physically; he has a 3-6-0 record during the month of March. 

Interim coach Bruce Cassidy said after practice that he wouldn’t be making a decision on his starting goalie in Brooklyn until Saturday, but it would be stunning if Rask didn't play.

“We’ll see how things clear up . . . and see where we’re at,” said Cassidy of any Bruins lineup changes against the Isles. “We’ll know by then. [The starting goalie] will be determined tomorrow. I don’t want to get out in front of it, to be honest with you.”

Here are the line combos and D-pairings based on Friday’s practice, with Cassidy uncertain of any changes he might make between now and Saturday night: 
 
Marchand-Bergeron-Backes
Stafford-Krejci-Backes
Vatrano-Spooner-Hayes
Moore-Nash-Acciari
 
Chara-Carlo
Krug-McQuaid
C. Miller-K. Miller