Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while looking forward to the next time the Bruins and Canadiens face off against each other.
*FOH (Friend of Haggs) Mark Divver has all the details from the good, the bad and the ugly last weekend with the Providence Bruins.
*Tracey Myers examines this season’s condensed schedule in the NHL, and how it’s impacting coaching, managers and players around the league. It certainly hasn’t been a good development in a lot of hockey people’s opinions.
*Jack Todd says a lot of nice things about Claude Julien that I totally agree with as he takes over the Canadiens this week. It’s also 100 percent possible that a person can be both classy and a great hockey coach while at the same time no longer being an effective fit for a hockey team as it happened with the Bruins. Julien will go on and have success in Montreal, but let’s not forget he’s taking over a first place team that is supposed to have some level of success.
*John Tavares is still remaining loyal to the New York Islanders franchise at this point as the Maple Leafs media are looking to stir things up about a potential free agent choice coming up for the star player.
*Happy birthday to the legendary Jaromir Jagr, who turns 45 years old today and continues to score, create and add to his Hall of Fame career.
*FOH (Friend of Haggs) and PHT writer Mike Halford has Antoine Vermette getting a 10-game suspension for slashing at a linesman. Yeah, that’s a no-no. Pretty shocking for a player like Vermette that’s always had a pretty gentlemanly reputation.
*Good piece from Chris Johnston about a young Auston Matthews getting discovered while playing for a Ukrainian team.
*For something completely different: It sounds like the iconic newsstand in Harvard Square is getting turned into a chain pizza place, and that’s a damn shame.
Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while really enjoying Matthew Tkachuk’s first go-round in the NHL. He may not have grown up here, but he’s definitely got some Masshole in his game.
*The five major contenders for the Selke Trophy include this one guy that wears Black and Gold and might have won the thing a couple of times. I’ll give you three guesses who that is.
*The 25-year run of the Detroit Red Wings in the playoffs has come to a close, and it’s probably the right time for them to reevaluate things.
*A Flames/Kings game turned into an on-ice rumble of sorts with Matthew Tkachuk involved in all kinds of action after his previous elbow of Drew Doughty.
*Speaking of the Flames/Kings, here’s Brian Burke with an After Hours-looking segment talking about the rough stuff during Flames/Kings.
*David Clarkson is finding his hockey life after the NHL with a high school coaching gig in Ohio not far from the Blue Jackets’ home rink.
*If it’s truly his last hockey game in Calgary, Jarome Iginla made it one to remember squaring off against his old Flames team.
*For something completely different: There’s been some smoke about the Expos returning to Montreal, but no fire as yet on the reports.
BRIGHTON, Mass – The Bruins will be missing one of their regular wingers when they take the ice against the Dallas Stars on Thursday night.
Frank Vatrano missed the morning skate at Warrior Ice Arena with an upper body injury and is out for tonight’s game. That creates an opening for Matt Beleskey to draw back in after missing the past couple of games due to the birth of his first child. The sharp-shooting Vatrano was injured at Wednesday’s practice and it sounded like a day-to-day type thing when Bruce Cassidy discussed it following morning skate.
“Frankie yesterday in practice had an upper body issue that will leave him day-to-day,” said Cassidy. “I don’t think it’s serious, but [Vatrano] will miss tonight. We’ll see where he’s at tomorrow.”
It might not be the worst time for Vatrano to reset things as well having gone goal-less in the past 14 games, and been a part of an up-and-down third line that hasn’t produced much offense lately for the Bruins. With that change out there and Tuukka Rask again being tapped for the start against the Stars, here’s the line combos and D-pairings based on morning skate: