Bruins-Canucks: Five thoughts from the second

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Bruins-Canucks: Five thoughts from the second

By JoeHaggerty
CSNNE.com

VANCOUVER Here are five thoughts from the second period with the Bruins and Canucks locked in a scoreless tie at Rogers Arena.1) Bostons first line of David Krejci, Nathan Horton and Milan Lucic have put 12 shots on net. Theyre getting plenty of room to work with, and theyre also getting their nasty on. Lucic and Kevin Bieksa have mixed it up several times as No. 17 has been playing the body, and Dan Hamhuis hit on Lucic in the second period touched off an angry scrum by the benches. Hamhuis seemed to administer a nice hip check on Lucic that flipped the power forwards legs over his head, but Hamhuis limped off the ice after several Bruins players converged on the Vancouver defensemen.
2)Alexandre Burrows is already taking a villains role in the series after two periods of hockey. He earned a penalty and possibly a suspension for biting the index finger on Patrice Bergerons right hand at the end of the first period. Then he hooked Tim Thomas skates as he was falling down in the second period. Brad Marchand identified him as a rat before the series started, and hes been exactly that in the early going.3)Six hits for Johnny Boychuk in 13:33 of action in the first two periods. The defenseman is clearly into it. The amount of physicality from the Canucks has been impressive in Game 1 as well. Vancouver isnt shying away from taking the body and actually leads the Bruins in the hit department by a 22-19 margin after two periods.4)The Bruins have taken too many penalties in the first two periods. A holding call by Brad Marchand shouldnt have happened and did because he was venting frustration. The Bruins are playing with fire and have to be careful. Six power plays are way too many for Vancouver.5)Tim Thomas has been a difference maker thus far. Only 20 saves for Thomas, but hes been great against a bevy of grade 'A' chances from the Canucks through the first 40 minutes. Daniel Sedin has been busy with six shots on net.
Joe Haggerty can be reached at jhaggerty@comcastsportsnet.com.Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs

Bruins coaches: Czarnik a ‘Belichick-type hockey player’

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Bruins coaches: Czarnik a ‘Belichick-type hockey player’

BOSTON – Austin Czarnik is off to a good start at Bruins training camp.

He’s got points in each of the first two exhibition games and just the fact that he’s cracked the B’s lineup in both games tells you that the coaching staff wants to get a long, good look at the undersized forward.

But the 5-foot-9, 167-pound Czarnik brings more than simply a touch of the Napoleon complex after always being told that he was too small to make it to the elite levels of hockey. The 23-year-old clearly can score after posting 20 goals and 61 points in his first pro season in the AHL in Providence last season. He plays with heart, energy and a dogged determination when he’s hunting pucks on the fore-check.

But former P-Bruins head coach and current B’s assistant coach Bruce Cassidy says that Czarnik also brings something a little extra that New England Patriots fans will certainly appreciate.

“As far as being a player goes, he would be, to me, that [Bill] Belichick-type player that you could use in a lot of different situations,” said Cassidy, in clear reference to intelligent utility guys Troy Brown, Danny Woodhead, Julian Edelman and others that all filled different roles in their time with New England.

“He’s got a very, very high IQ, he’s a quick learner and very coachable,” Cassidy said. “So, he’s a guy you can move around, and he can play with different players. He can play on the penalty kill, he’s good on the power play and especially on the point.

“So there are a lot of different things. I think from night-to-night if you wanted to, you could move him around in your lineup and he could be effective for you. I know he’s a center, but it would be interesting to see if he could play the wing and be effective. That’s something we haven’t really seen. Is that something we maybe attempt down the road? I don’t know. I don’t want to speak out of turn, but it wouldn’t surprise me if he could handle it. He even played for us 6-on-5 as a defenseman with the goalie out. He’s just a smart player, and he understands the game very, very well.”

So, Czarnik is off to a good start in training camp with the Bruins, but we also saw the same thing from him last year as a rookie to pro hockey. 

Now, it’s about seeing whether a smaller player can finish strong as the competition heightens deeper into the preseason, and perhaps he can bring that versatility and feistiness to the NHL level in Boston. 

 

 

Thursday, Sept. 29: Oilers right where they belong

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Thursday, Sept. 29: Oilers right where they belong

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while looking forward to watching the Luke Cage Netflix series.

*The Cult of Hockey has no issues with yours truly ranking the Edmonton Oilers 29th out of 30 teams in my first preseason NHL power rankings.

*An interesting piece about Brian McGrattan and his battle with alcohol in his career as an NHL tough guy. I can honestly say having covered him a bit when he was in the Bruins organization that he was one of the scariest dudes I’ve ever talked to in an NHL dressing room. A nice guy, but very intense and always looked like he definitely enjoyed his work on the ice.

*Dennis Seidenberg hopped on with the Hockey Central crew today to talk about his new contract with the New York Islanders.

*PHT writer and Friend of Haggs (FOH) Mike Halford has Guy Boucher with some serious Dion Phaneuf love going on in Ottawa.

*Jack Eichel is oozing confidence and swagger in his second NHL season with Buffalo looking to make a big step up this season.

*Scott Burnside said that the World Cup of Hockey could be coming to an end tonight and I think most predict that it will with a little bit of an anticlimactic thud due to the sheer awesomeness of Team Canada.

*For something completely different: “Aleppo Moment” sounds like a great name for a rock band. Not so much for a Presidential candidate.