By Joe HaggertyCSNNE.comEDMONTON, AB Here are five thoughts from the first period between the Bruins and the Oilers with the Bs leading Edmonton by a 2-1 score at the end of the first 20 minutes at Rexall Place.1) Looks like the Milan LucicNathan HortonDavid Krejci line is finishing the season in much the same fashion that they started everything out. Horton pots his 17th goal of the season and his third in the last five games after collecting one of Krejcis best passes of the season from the other side of the ice. It all started with Horton getting involved in the game and going after Edmontons Theo Peckham after he got a little rough with Krejci a few moments prior.2) Peckham is a pretty tough guy, but it looks like Horton knocked him out of the game with a strong right hand directly to the face and nose of Peckham. Tonights game is the kind of effort the Bruins have been waiting for out of Horton for quite a while.3) Brian McGrattan dealt to the Anaheim Ducks for an unknown hockey asset in return. Good deal or the Bruins as it didnt appear that McGrattan was going to be anything more than a black ace for the Bs during a playoff run.4) Good bounce back effort for the Bruins after letting the Oilers take a quick lead just a minute into the first period on an Ales Hemsky goal. This game had trap written all over it, and it appears the Bs have managed to avoid that by pulling themselves out of the early hole.5) Bruins outshot the Oilers 15-5 over the period. Guess theyre not taking the Oil all that lightly, eh?
Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading. while readying for the last home game of the preseason tonight. Boy that went by quickly.
*Chicago Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville is looking for the right mix on the fourth line for the Hawks.
*The NHL is coming late to the China party and it makes one wonder what will happen for the Winter Olympic Games set to be played there in 2022.
*PHT writer Adam Gretz has the Arizona Coyotes wanting to retire the freshly-retired Shane Doan’s number in the future.
*Pittsburgh Penguins coach Mike Sullivan says that the decision to accept the White House’s invitation was independent of politics. Certainly, it was, but the timing of it and the feeble statement to go along with it left a lot to be desired.
*Pierre Lebrun goes 1-on-1 with Montreal Canadiens coach Claude Julien to talk about his past, his present and his future behind the bench with the Habs. I had always intended to subscribe to the Athletic, and this is the article that finally got me to do it as I get to read a few moments with one of the classiest individuals in the NHL in Julien. It certainly had a few rocky moments toward the end here in Boston for Julien, but I will always respect that guy as a coach and, more importantly, as a person.
*For something completely different: an interesting look at Alejandro Villanueva, the only Pittsburgh Steelers player, and a proud veteran, to stand outside the tunnel and on the field for the national anthem prior to the Steelers game on Sunday.
BRIGHTON, Mass – Zdeno Chara is one of the oldest players in the NHL at 40 and sometimes those players need a little more time to rest and recharge than the up-and-coming skaters half their age in training camp. That’s the case with Chara as he sat out practice on Monday feeling “under the weather” according to the Bruins. He didn’t skate on Sunday either and won’t play against the Chicago Blackhawks in Boston’s final home game of the preseason tonight.
Similarly, Kenny Agostino won’t be playing tonight after he suffered an upper-body injury in a victory last week over the Flyers, where the winger also scored the winning goal in overtime. Instead, a couple of young players will get further looks as Matt Grzelcyk is expected to be paired with Brandon Carlo and young Ryan Fitzgerald will get another look in the spot where a healthy Agostino might have drawn back into the lineup on Monday.
“We’re looking for [the young guys] to keep pushing, consistency and be strong on pucks as the lineups get stronger,” said Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy. “We’re getting closer to NHL lineups with most teams like us and paring down, in general. The expectation is that they’ll see that 82 times. Fitzy has been a nice surprise. I shouldn’t say surprise because I didn’t know a lot about him. But he’s done what we’ve asked, so we’ll give him another game. The Agostino injury has opened up a door as he was probably a guy that would have gone back in after [Thursday] night, has played well and is another guy we don’t know a lot about. So it’s a good opportunity for [Fitzgerald]. I thought he was ahead of some of the other [young] guys, so that’s why we put him back in.”
Here are the projected Bruins line combos and D-pairings tonight with just two more exhibition games to go before the regular season gets started: