Bruins caught "off guard" by Pouliot's absence

572248.jpg

Bruins caught "off guard" by Pouliot's absence

If there is one thing Claude Julien doesnt want this time of year its uncertainty in performance or availability.

He doesnt like being caught off-guard.

There have been issues with Benoit Pouliot in both departments this season, and another incident cropped up just prior to Saturday afternoons 4-3 loss to the Washington Capitals. After taking the pregame warm-up Pouliot indicated to the Bruins coaching staff that he wouldnt be able to answer the bell for the game due to a lower body injury suffered earlier this week against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Pouliot was able to play through it on Thursday night against the Buffalo Sabres and stayed off the ice Friday when practice was made optional. But the Bruins were caught by surprise at Pouliots inability to play and hadnt called any players up from the AHL Providence Bruins just in case if the worst case scenario presented itself.

Its the lower-body injury. After warm-ups he just said he couldnt go, said Julien. So it caught us a little bit off guard, obviously, and so we dressed with seven Ds.

So instead the Bruins were forced to play defenseman Mike Mottau at forward for the first time in his NHL alongside Shawn Thornton and Gregory Campbell, and Julien bumped Lane MacDermid up to third line duty. Mottau admitted he was uncomfortable and it certainly wasnt the ideal solution, but the Bruins were able to make due amid difficult circumstances.

Mottau was very, very adequate as a replacement tonight to go out there and do a job when he was called upon, said Julien. Kudos to him for doing a job in a position that hes not used to playing all the time.

Mottau ended up with 6:52 of ice time on eight shifts and registered three hits in a simple crash-and-bang role on the fourth line.

With Pouliots status uncertain for Sunday afternoons matinee against the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Bruins recalled rookie forward Max Sauve for the three-game road trip through Pittsburgh and Florida. Sauve met the team prior to their team flight to Pittsburgh and will be available to play against the Penguins in what would be his NHL debut.

Drellich: MLB could explain umpire rulings more often

Drellich: MLB could explain umpire rulings more often

BOSTON — We know that Red Sox manager John Farrell did something wrong. In the absence of any sort of formal announcement otherwise, we’re left to assume the umpires did everything properly — but there’s room for MLB to make that clearer.

If the NBA can put out Last 2 Minute reports, why can’t MLB provide more regular explanations or reviews of contested calls?

Farrell on Tuesday said he’d like to see more public accountability in the umpiring realm, hours before the manager was to sit out Game No. 77. Farrell was suspended one game for making contact with crew chief Bill Miller on Saturday night as manager and umpire rained spittle on each other over a balk call that went against the Sox.

Well, was it a balk or not? Did Miller do anything wrong as well?

“I don’t know if there was anything levied on the other side,” Farrell said. “I don’t know that.”

But would he like such matters to always be public?

“I think there have been strides made in that way,” Farrell said. “I guess I would. I think everyone in uniform would prefer that to be made public. Whether or not that happens, I don’t know, but that would be a choice I would make.”

The league has a thorough internal review system. But it is just that: internal. Most of the time, any way.

On most every night at Fenway Park, there is someone on hand watching just the umpires and reviewing them.

MLB, to its credit, has announced suspensions for umpires in the past. The league has made public acknowledgments when calls have been made incorrectly. More of that seems viable — even if it’s an announcement to reaffirm that the call was made and handled properly, and here are the reasons why.

“I haven’t received any further determination or review of what transpired,” Farrell said. “My position, my stance, remains steadfast. I still firmly believe that time was called [before the balk call was made]. I wasn’t arguing the balk. I was arguing the timing of it. As I reiterated today to those that I spoke with, I still stand by my side of the argument. Unfortunately, there was contact made.”