Campbell: Complaining about refs is a tactic


Campbell: Complaining about refs is a tactic

By Joe Haggerty

BEDFORD There has been plenty of yammering over the last 48 hours about lopsided referees, biases against certain teams, makeup calls and the normal subterfuge that can go down in the Stanley Cup playoffs.

Referee Eric Furlatt was the center of attention after Tampa Bay coach Guy Boucher singled him out as the reason more than 20 penalties had been called against the Lightning in Bruins games officiated by that referee. The Lightning had received half as many power plays.

I was asked, and people put numbers in front of me," Boucher said. "Those were the facts and the numbers.

"If youre asking me, said Boucher as he whipped out a box score following Wednesdays Game 6 win and began ticking off the penalty calls, "the power plays are 5-4 for them today, and they were 3-0 for them to start the game in the first period. It was 4-1 for them before we got our other power play, so I dont know who had the advantage today? We had less power plays than them.

Its true that the Lightning had only four power plays to Bostons five power play chances in Game 6, but they obviously scored three power play goals and are actively hoping to participate in playoff games against the Bruins that tilt toward more special teams play.

Bruins forward Gregory Campbell is in a pretty unique position with a father thats in charge of NHL Hockey Operations, and a long history watching hockey when coaches began their histrionics about the referees.

Campbell thought it was a ploy on one level, but also felt like it was a faade to take some of the pressure away from many Lightning players going through a deep playoff run for the first time.

Obviously its a tactic used by many players, coaches and GMs," Campbell said. "Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesnt. Thats not our job to worry about it as players. Were just going out there and playing. There are things that go on inside the game all the time.

Sometimes it could work . . . I dont know. Im not a referee and Im not the guy thats in charge of the referees. I think theyre professional enough to call the game as it is to be honest with you. Sometimes its done for other reasons. To take the pressure off the Lighting when theyre down 3-2 and present something. Coaches in the playoffs tend to know what theyre doing, and its our job as players to go out and ignore that stuff.

Joe Haggerty can be reached at Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs

Tuesday, Jan. 24: Crosby, Matthews top coaches' poll

Tuesday, Jan. 24: Crosby, Matthews top coaches' poll

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while rooting for “Manchester By the Sea” to upset some favorites at the Oscars.

*Sidney Crosby and Auston Matthews top the annual NHL coaches' poll produced by TSN Insider Bob McKenzie.

*The oral history of Fox’s glowing puck used for the NHL during their run with the league is an entertaining one.

*Mike Babcock gives pep talks to the reporters along with his own players while running the show in Toronto.

*The Vegas Golden Knights are moving forward with their timetable toward hiring a coach with some good candidates out there now, and some other ones potentially available soon. I’ve wondered if Claude Julien would be interested in that spot if he’s let go by the Bruins this season, but the one sure thing is that he wouldn’t be out of work long if he is relieved of his duties.

*Claude Giroux needs to start playing a little more fearlessly and without dwelling on mistakes, according to his general manager.

*Detroit Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill doesn’t believe that fancy stats and analytics have had a major impact on the way the Wings do things.

*PHT writer James O’Brien has the rundown on a Millenial’s dream of performers at the 2017 NHL All-Star Game: Nick Jonas, Fifth Harmony and Carly Rae Jepsen.

*For something completely different: keeping an eye on the notion that Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg is going to run for President.



Julien: 'The less said and the more shown' is good for Bruins right now

Julien: 'The less said and the more shown' is good for Bruins right now

BRIGHTON, Mass – Claude Julien met with the media after Tuesday’s morning skate and there was a bit of a long pause between questions at one point early in the session.

“I understand because everything that needs to be said has already been said, right?” cracked the longtime Bruins bench boss, who was in good spirits after morning skate despite the turmoil around him.

It’s clearly less about words and more about results right now for a struggling team that’s lost a season-worst four games in a row in gut-punching fashion and has fallen out of a playoff position despite teams above them, Ottawa and Toronto, holding five games in hand on them. 

The Bruins are in a freefall at the worst possible time and at this point, Julien wants to see positive action and winning results from his team rather than the empty talk with the media.

“We want to respect our game plan, execute it well and that normally helps you. We’ve been a little bit all over the place, especially in the last game,” said Julien. “That’s what we addressed yesterday, moving forward.

“I haven’t used the All-Star break as a motivation. We’re basically looking at these last two games, and what we have to do in these last two games. I think we’re well aware of what’s waiting for them after that. The players normally know when the breaks are. That’s not for us right now. I’d like to see our focus on what we need to do [against the Wings] to right the ship. We’ve talked about it a lot, and I think right now the less said, and the more shown is probably the best thing.”

With two games left until the All-Star break, one has to wonder what Julien’s fate will be if the Bruins drop both games to Detroit and Pittsburgh before the group breaks up for All-Star weekend. 

A good showing might be enough to keep Julien calling the shots for the Black and Gold down the stretch this season. But the sense is that more of the same fragile, losing efforts from the Bruins in these final two home dates, a familiar look from this group over the past three seasons, could spell doom for the winningest coach in Bruins franchise history.

One thing is for sure: Words aren’t going to do anything for Julien, and instead it’s about cold, hard results for the coach and the Bruins players who are nose-diving in the middle of the regular season.