Hamill ready to jump back in with B's

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Hamill ready to jump back in with B's

It looks like both Zach Hamill and Daniel Paille could join the Bruins lineup tonight against the Los Angeles Kings.

Hamill is most certainly in given his previous center experience and the Bs need for a pivot to facilitate things in between Shawn Thornton and Jordan CaronDaniel Paille. Paille will need positive results from a neuro-psych test conducted on Monday if he wants to suit up against the Kings, but both coach and player expected the ace penalty killer to pass with flying colors.

Julien was leaning toward putting Paille back in the lineup provided he had cleared the final medical hurdle while returning from a mild concussion, and keep the fourth line from having two inexperienced players in Caron and Hamill.

Whether Paille plays or sits, the former 2007 first round pick in Hamill will be skating in his second stint with the big club after filling in when Rich Peverley and Benoit Pouliot missed several games in November.

If Dan is available we have a decision to make, but I dont think any of those guys have enough experience in the middle, said Julien. I dont know if I feel comfortable taking guys from other lines and putting them on the fourth line. So Zach will fill the role in the middle. When we had him up here he was really reliable at doing the job in his own end. Hes a guy thats a good playmaker.

Hes been playing wing mostly this year, but hes also a guy that has played center for most of his career. That versatility has been really good for him. When we had him up here I really liked what he brought to the table. So when it got to the point where we needed a center we thought he deserved to get the call.

Both NHL promotions have been in emergency call-up situations and the 23-year-old has to hope the second look in Boston goes just as swimmingly as the first one did.

Hamill fared well while putting up an assist and a plus-3 in two games, but the points havent been popping up with quite the same regularity once he was shipped back to the P-Bruins. Hamill has 14 points (7 goals and 7 assists) in 25 games for the P-Bruins and holds an even plus-minus rating, but still got the call over some other potential call-up candidates at the AHL level.

Hell be centering the Bs fourth line Tuesday night against the Kings, so his game will be more about providing energy and offensive possession in the attack zone than about making pretty plays. Its an adjustment, but either way Hamill said hell attune his game and do whatever is required to stick in Boston for as long as possible. Manning the third line in his last audition should prepare him for his Merlot Line debut against Los Angeles in a game where the Kings should be flying.

I played with Chris Kelly and either Caron in the first game or Peverley in the second game when I was called up, said Hamill. Im smart enough that I think I can adapt to whatever style I need to play. Ill do whatever gets me in the lineup. Their speed, their skill and their work ethic isnt hard at all to adapt to."

Im keeping it simple for lack of a better term. I just need to know situations, who were playing against and making sure were smart all over the ice. I have to keep it simple, but I also want to use my skill set when I see a chance to make a play out there.

Morning Skate: Sidney Crosby has been a good ambassador as the face of his NHL generation

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Morning Skate: Sidney Crosby has been a good ambassador as the face of his NHL generation

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while wishing everybody a safe and relaxing Memorial Day weekend. 

*Apparently Nashville Predators head coach Peter Laviolette has yet to try Nashville’s hot chicken despite his time behind the Preds bench. It’s okay, I have yet to try it either in my handful of visits to Music City. 

*Good stuff from PHT writer and FOH (Friend of Haggs) Jason Brough. Apparently it wasn’t so easy to make Wayne Gretzky’s head bleed when it came time for director Doug Liman to cut Swingers together

*Sidney Crosby cares about the history and the issues of the game, and has been a good ambassador as the face of his NHL generation despite the hate that always comes with such responsibility. 

*Puck Daddy examines Crosby’s performance in the playoffs, and the odds of him winning another Conn Smythe Trophy. 

*The Penguins have made it to the Stanley Cup Final without Kris Letang for their playoff run, and that’s an amazing accomplishment. 

*Erik Karlsson said that he will be tending to his injured foot next week, and expects a full recovery for next season after a brilliant run with his Ottawa Senators

*Larry Brooks again rails against the Stanley Cup playoff structure and it’s relation to an “absurd regular season.” Say what you will, but the fact the Penguins are there for a second straight season shoots down some of the absurdity stuff in my mind. The best team from the East is where they should be and they did it without Kris Letang to boot. 

*Chicago Blackhawks prospect Alex Debrincat is confident his abilities will translate to the NHL despite his size after taking home honors as the best player in junior hockey this season. 

*For something completely different: Apparently there’s a hard core comic book geek gripe that “The Flash” is burning through bad guys too quickly. This would make sense if they couldn’t revisit these bad guys at any point, but they absolutely can go back to a big bad like Grodd anytime they want. 

Playoff run ends for Providence Bruins, but some promising signs

Playoff run ends for Providence Bruins, but some promising signs

It was the longest run that the P-Bruins have had in a few years and another unmistakable sign that the future is brightening for the Black and Gold, but the Bruins AHL affiliate has ended their playoff push in the Calder Cup semi-finals. 

The Providence Bruins fell by a 3-1 score to the Syracuse Crunch on Saturday night to lose to the Crunch in five games when the best-of-seven series was set to return to Providence this coming week. The P-Bruins had vanquished the Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins and Hershey Bears in the first two rounds of the Calder Cup playoffs before finally exiting against Syracuse. 

Though it’s over, it’s clear some of the Bruins prospects made a nice step forward over the second half of the AHL season and then into the Calder Cup playoffs. With the Calder Cup Finals yet to start, B’s forward prospect Danton Heinen stands as the second-leading playoff scorer in the entire AHL with nine goals and 18 points in 17 playoff games after really struggling in the first half of his first pro season while bouncing back and forth between the NHL and the AHL. 

This could bode well for the skilled Heinen and his hopes to make the leap to the NHL in the near future after a stellar collegiate career at the University of Denver. AHL journeymen-types Wayne Simpson and Jordan Szwarz were the next two top scorers for the P-Bruins in the playoff run, but Jake DeBrusk had a strong playoff season as well while popping in six goals in 17 games. DeBrusk led all Providence players with his 54 shots on net in the 17-game playoff run for Providence, and he headlined a group that included B’s prospects Ryan Fitzgerald, Zach Senyshyn, Matt Grzelcyk, Peter Cehlarik (who succumbed to shoulder surgery during the playoffs), Emil Johansson and Robbie O’Gara all getting some vital playoff experience. 

Both Heinen and DeBrusk will be strong candidates for jobs on the wing with the Boston big club when training camp opens in the fall after strong showings in the postseason. 

On the goaltending side, Zane McIntyre was solid for the P-Bruins at times while in 16 of their 17 playoff games with a .906 save percentage. But it was Malcolm Subban that was playing at the very end of the playoff run for Providence and featured a sterling .937 save percentage in the four AHL playoff games that he appeared in this spring after an up-and-down regular season. McIntyre had an .857 save percentage and 4.37 goals against average in the final series against Syracuse, and looked a little spent like many of the other P-Bruins players once they’d unexpectedly made it to the third round of the AHL postseason.  

The only unfortunate part of Providence’s run is that newly signed youngsters Charlie McAvoy and Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson couldn’t be a part of it after signing and then appearing in NHL games following a cut-off date for AHL playoff rosters. Both missed on an experience that could have been very conducive for their professional development, and uncovered a wrinkle in the NHL/AHL transaction process that really doesn’t make a whole lot of sense for a developmental league.