Boston Bruins

Home sweet home for Lucic

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Home sweet home for Lucic

By Kevin Walsh
Comcast SportsNet New England

VANCOUVER On Thursday, I visited Milan Lucic's home in East Vancouver. It's a nice neighborhood that's undergoing a lot of changes. The smaller, older homes are being torn down for larger and newer ones. The Lucic's did the same thing. They tore down the old house a few years back, and built a bigger one on the same lot. It's a middle-class neighborhood that's trending upward fast.

Milan's dad, Dobro, is a man's man. If he grew a beard, he could pass for theDosEquis Most Interesting Man in the World.HisEnglish is accented from his native Serbia. He's somewhat self conscious about that, but I understood him just fine. Hiszest for life, pride in Milan, and body language more than make up forwhat's lost in translation.

Looch's room is cool. It's small, with a big bed in the middle. On the wall are framed pictures of him:junior championship, first NHL goal andpuck, a fighting photo from hisdays with the Vancouver Giants, and a three shot of the Lucic brothers. Jovan is the oldest, Nick the youngest, Milan is in the middle.

Nick and Milan look a lot alike. Jovan is a professional DJ who makesCDs that Lucic shares with other Bruins. Tyler Seguin says Loochis the team's music master. Not true says Mike Giardi. "It's Johnny Boychuk."

I'm going with Tyler, even if hetried to "teach me how toDougie" tosalsamusic after Game 7 against TampaBay.

Next door to the Lucic's, an older man who's primary language is Chinese,showed me with his hands (starting low and finishing high) that Milan has grown up and grown very tall -- 6'4" to be exact.

Across the street lives the Thomas family. The Thomas kidsplayed with the Lucic childrengrowing up. Dean Thomas, who's about 50-years-old,almost cried when I asked him how proud he was of Milan.

"He has the heart of a lion.Always has.We've waited 40 years for the Stanley Cup to come home to Vancouver.Whether it's the Canucks, or with Milan, we'll be very happy.And yes we will have a party," Mr. Thomas said.

The garage door in the back alley of the Lucic property has been repainted, and the side fence repaired. Bothonce looked about as goodas Sidney Crosby's dryer. It was good to be in Looch's hood. He's'good people' because he's surrounded by good people.

Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron, David Pastrnak earn spots on TSN's Top 50 list

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Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron, David Pastrnak earn spots on TSN's Top 50 list

Three Bruins were on TSN’s annual Top 50 ranking of NHL players, a list that was led by reigning Hart Trophy winner Connor McDavid. 

Brad Marchand (No. 18), Patrice Bergeron (25) and David Pastrnak (36) all made the list for Boston, with Edmonton, Montreal, Chicago and Winnipeg also having three players on the list. The Capitals, Penguins and Predators had four players apiece. 

Marchand jumped up 12 spots from last season’s ranking, while Bergeron fell 11 spots after being ranked 14th heading into last season. Pastrnak had not previously been on the list. 

McDavid earning the top spot marks the first time in the eight-year history of TSN’s list that Sidney Crosby, who is No. 2 this year, has not been ranked first. 

Malcolm Subban getting back on Bruins' prospect radar

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Malcolm Subban getting back on Bruins' prospect radar

BOSTON – Malcolm Subban needed a strong training camp performance in order to get himself back on the radar as an NHL prospect for the Bruins and the former first-round pick has accomplished that this month. In what may be his final appearance of the preseason, the 23-year-old Subban stopped 24 of the 26 shots and made 14 saves in the third period to lead the Bruins to a 4-2 win over a not-ready-for-prime-time Chicago Blackhawks lineup Monday night at TD Garden.

Subban was at his best in the third period protecting a slim Bruins lead and showing off some of the athletic skills that have always made him an intriguing prospect if the technique can ever catch to the natural talent. Afterward, it was pretty clear that Subban was laser-focused headed into the B’s final home game of the preseason and perhaps sending a message that nobody should forget about him after a couple of disastrous Boston appearances already on his NHL resume.

It certainly was a feel-good moment when he stuffed a series of chances for the Blackhawks, including a full extension kick-save stop on Erik Gustafsson and a couple of good reaction stops on Brandon Saad while scrambling around the front of his crease. Then Subban heard some love from the Bruins fans that saw him get pulled from his only Boston appearance last season and have watched him veer dangerously close to the “bust” category entering his fifth pro season.

 “Obviously it felt really good to hear the fans and stuff. But I just try to stay focused and dialed in," Subban said. "Obviously, it’s kind of hard sometimes. But I just try to stay focused like I said, stay dialed in and get the win and finish strong. I’m just trying to play my game and work hard. Hopefully, everybody sees that.”

The decision with Subban isn’t exactly an easy one for the Bruins but they likely don’t have a choice in the matter. He’ll need to pass through waivers if/when the Bruins cut him from camp and it’s hard to imagine they’ll carry three goalies on the NHL roster (Tuukka Rask, Anton Khudobin and Subban). The Bruins organization had already seemingly made peace with potentially losing him for nothing after leaving him unprotected in the Vegas expansion draft over the summer, but this preseason gives everybody a little hope that Subban could turn into a late-blooming goaltender prospect.

Certainly, the Bruins coaching staff came away impressed with Subban’s play after a bit of a sloppy first goal allowed to Saad. His presence as one of the final three goalies in camp speaks to how he’s played in the preseason as well.

”You get limited viewing in training camp, you only get a game, a game and a half, so you have to make the best of it, [Subban] did tonight. He was very good. The first goal was a hell of a tip,” said Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy. “He got caught pulling off the post a bit, but he was rock solid after that. The other goal that beat him was a great shot. We had some breakdowns at different times in the game. Specifically, late there where it could have been scary, but he did his job. He was good. [We’re] very pleased with him.”  

It would appear at this point in camp at the NHL jobs are locked up with Rask and Khudobin as the goaltending tandem to start the season, but give credit to Subban for coming to an important training camp ready and focused to get himself back on the B’s prospect radar.