Lucic hosts third annual Rock and Jock charity softball event

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Lucic hosts third annual Rock and Jock charity softball event

LOWELL It was another successful Rock and Jock charity softball game for Milan Lucic in whats usually one of the first signs that the NHL season is nearly upon us.
Things may hit a little bit of a bump with a considerable gap in CBA negotiations, and the season may not get started on time while possibly wiping out training camp at the same time.
But a handful of Lucics teammates still showed up for Wednesday nights game at LeLacheur Park before the Bruins power forward heads off this week to the Bahamas to celebrate his wedding to the former Brittany Carnegie. The game raised over 10,000 for Celebrities for Charity Foundation that will be donated to the NMTW Community Partners that donates money to various charities all over New England.
Its been great. You talk about the fans and the people willing to support the event, and theyve made it what its grown into today, said Lucic, of the third year hes hosted the charity softball game. Every year were filling up LeLacheur Park. Its such a great event and I always get great feedback from everybody thats been involved.
Lucic, Tuukka Rask, Dennis Seidenberg, Johnny Boychuk and Mike Mottau all suited up for the Jocks team along with former Bruins enforcer Jay Miller, former MLB pitcher and Salem native Jeff Juden, Olympic hockey player Colleen Coyne, New England Revolution player Kelyn Rowe and former Patriots offensive lineman Joe Andruzzi all participated for the Jocks. On the Rocks squad were 94.5 radio personalities Ramiro Torres, Krazy Kulo Melissa, 98.5 the Sports Hub radio hosts Fred Toucher and Rich Shertenlieb, The Voice contestant James Massone, 7NEWS personalities Chris Lambert, Tim Caputo, Joe Amorosino and Dylan Dreyer, WBZ-TV anchor David Wade, Mix 104.1 morning host Karson Tager, KISS 108 producer Kenra Petrone, Family Guy executive producer Danny Smith and, of course, yours truly.
The Rocks lost to the Jocks by a 2-1 score in the bottom of the ninth when NWTW CFA and Executive Vice President Tom Hammond knocked in the winning run. But the real winners were charities benefiting from the Lucic event, and the people that will benefit directly from those funds.

Backes set to star in Animal Planet special this weekend

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Backes set to star in Animal Planet special this weekend

It’s only a coincidence that it will air the same week that the Boston Bruins went Hollywood with their annual three-game road trip through California, but David Backes and his wife Kelly are going to get some solid TV time this weekend. The animal-loving couple are going to be featured Saturday night in the all-new Animal Planet special "Stars to the Rescue," which highlights the Backes family’s excellent work to ensure every animal has a ‘furever’ home.

The lifelong animal lovers have adopted five rescue pets that all made the move from St. Louis to Boston this summer, and launched Athletes for Animals in 2013, a non-profit organization supporting professional athletes and animal advocacy efforts. The 32-year-old Backes chose a Boston animal shelter as his first setting to meet with the Boston media this summer after signing with the Bruins in free agency, and spoke glowingly about his inspiration for marrying two of his passions: helping animals and sports.

“The full story is that in college we wanted an animal or two, but it just wasn’t responsible because we were renting and the landlords didn’t approve," said Backes, the proud owner of four dogs (Maverick, Rosey, Marty and Bebe) and two cats (Sunny, Poly). "We just didn’t really have the time or resources to support them, so we volunteered at the local shelter for the three years I was in school.

“When my wife [Kelly] and I moved to St. Louis, we wanted to connect with the community, be a part and use our voice to influence social change to do our part making the world a little bit of a better place. So we said, ‘Why not connect with the animal welfare rescue community?’

“We absolutely love doing it: Walking dogs, scooping litter boxes and cleaning kennels. Let’s use our voice to kick this off and see what we can do, and it really just snowballed from that to then trying to tie other guys into it. It’s not limited to the animal stuff, but the animals that don’t have a voice, and the kids that don’t have a voice, really tug at our heart strings. We want to help them with this blessing of a great voice we’ve been given as professional athletes, and to really use that to give them some help.”

The “Stars to the Rescue” special premieres on Saturday night at 8 pm on Animal Planet where there will be a full segment on the Backes family, but here’s a clip where Backes talks about his well-publicized involvement with a number of stray dog rescues during his 2014 Olympic Hockey stint with Team USA in Sochi, Russia.

Backes isn’t the only Boston athlete featured during the Animal Planet special as it also chronicles the stories of other well-known athletes and celebrities and the dogs they can't live without: Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman, Baltimore Ravens’ Ronnie Stanley, Selma Blair, ESPN Correspondent Michelle Beadle, WNBA star Elena Delle Donne, former Red Sox knuckleballer Tim Wakefield and more. From training buddies to comforting companions, “Stars to the Rescue” shows first-hand how these celebrities first met their cute rescued canines and how their dogs have impacted and transformed their lives for the better.

What we learned in Bruins' 4-1 win over Kings: Back on track

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What we learned in Bruins' 4-1 win over Kings: Back on track

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