WILMINGTON, Mass. The Bruins got their work on this morning at Ristuccia Arena between home-and-home games against the Maple Leafs, and worked diligently on their neutral zone coverage after some defensive slippage in a run-and-gun victory over the Maple Leafs.
It may be nitpicking for Julien, but it may also be the first signs that the Bruins are getting a little complacent after rocking November with a 12-0-1 record and shooting up the Northeast Division standings. Those are the kind of things that can portend a losing stretch if theyre not properly addressed in practice, and the Bs coach went about doing so.
I saw some slipping in our defensive systems and coverage more against Toronto in that last game than I saw through the entire run that were on, said Julien. So today was about addressing and correcting those things before it becomes a bigger issue in the next few games."The challenge is to keep us at the height of where we need to be at on a regular basis. It's becoming tougher and tougher. We're finding ways to win, but the coaching staff has found areas we need to work on where part of our game is slipping a little bit. We need to make sure we fix those kinds of things if we want to make ourselves better if we want to win hockey games."
Jordan Caron and Steve Kampfer were both missing from practice on Friday after getting sent down to the Providence Bruins to take in a little game action, but Julien indicated that both players would be back in time for the two-game road trip through Pittsburgh and Winnipeg next week.
The lines from practice:
The Coyotes have hired former player Craig Cunningham as a pro scout, keeping the 26-year-old in hockey after a cardiac episode ended his playing career this season.
Drafted by the Bruins in the fourth round of the 2010 draft, Cunningham played 34 games for Boston over parts of two seasons before he was waived and claimed by Arizona. He totaled 19 games for the Coyotes, but served as captain of the Tucson Roadrunners, the team’s AHL affiliate.
Cunningham was hospitalized after he collapsed during pregame warmups on Nov. 19. He was kept alive by continual CPR, but had his lower left leg amputated the next months due to an infection from the episode.
Known as a high-character player who was popular with his teammates, Cunningham’s transition to scouting lets him further his career after a scary break.
"I'm very excited to begin the next chapter of my life with the Coyotes," Cunningham said in a statement released by the team. "I'm very grateful to John Chayka, Dave Tippett, the Coyotes and Roadrunners organizations, and all of the great fans across Arizona for the incredible support I've received over the past year. I'm looking forward to helping the Coyotes and I can't wait to get started in my new role."
Said Chayka, the team’s general manager: ”We're thrilled to have Craig join our hockey operations department as a pro scout. Craig was a smart, hard-working player with an incredible passion for the game. We're confident that he will bring those same qualities to the Coyotes in his new role and that he will be an invaluable asset to our organization. We look forward to Craig helping us in several areas and are excited that he is staying with the club."
Phil Perry and CSNNE.com Patriots Insider Tom E. Curran debate which receiver has been better for the Patriots: Wes Welker or Julian Edelman? It's part of this edition of Quick Slants The Podcast.