Bruins fight three times, score four in first period

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Bruins fight three times, score four in first period

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.com

BOSTON Here are five thoughts from the first period with the Bruins throwing a beating on the Dallas Stars while leading 4-0 at the TD Garden after the first 20 minutes of regulation.

1)Four fights in the first five minutes of the game, and three fights within the first 1:20 of the first in a game that clearly meant something to the Bruins. Give TSNs Bob McKenzie credit for finding a cheaphit from 2009 by Steve Ott on Gregory Campbell when the Bs center was a member of the Florida Panthers. That was the switch thatstarted things off and theres no doubt that much of that was a resounding statement from the Bs on how much they care about their teammates. Campbell had his nose bloodied in the fight with Ott, but Thornton, McQuaid and Ference all won decisive brawls with their Stars opponents. That's as close to the Big Bad Bruins as fans are likely to ever see with three consecutive fights in the first four seconds of the game before a puck could even be dropped.2)A career-high 8th goal of the season and 14th point of the year Shawn Thornton when he roofed a blast from beyond the faceoff dot high to Kari Lehtonens glove side to close out Bostons scoring. It was Thorntons first goal in 19 games, but the Bs enforcer is to be commended for the way hes worked on his hands, shot and ability to control the boards in both zones.3)Two goals for Patrice Bergeron and six points for the BergeronBrad MarchandMark Recchi line that has basically become Bostons best forward group over the course of the season. Dont expect that to change anytime soon as the MarchandBergeron combo is simply dynamite together. It was Bergerons 10th goal in his last 14 games.4)Adam McQuaid stepped in and dropped Brian Sutherby in the third of four fights in the first period, and showed exactly how much he covets the starting defenseman spot hes been given ahead of Mark Stuart. He doesnt plan on surrendering it anytime soon.5)Tuukka Rask stuffed James Neal on the backdoor when the game was still close in the first period, and looked as good as he has all season in making nine stops against the Stars. Rarely has the team and goaltender worked in tandem for good efforts this season, but thats happening tonight.Joe Haggerty can be reached at jhaggerty@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs

Heinen looking to show his offense in his shot on Krejci line

Heinen looking to show his offense in his shot on Krejci line

BRIGHTON, Mass – The Bruins mixed things up with their roster a bit on Saturday after dropping a couple of games in a row to Washington and Colorado. 

Fourth-line energy winger Noel Acciari and playmaking forward Danton Heinen were called up from Providence and will be in the lineup against the Toronto Maple Leafs at TD Garden on Saturday night. 
Acciari went to Providence the past couple of days to get some game action in after missing the past month with a lower body injury, but clearly showed he’s ready to go. 

So, Acciari is back to provide the same hard-hitting and energy he showed before he was hurt and Heinen is looking to show off a little more offense than in his first stint with the Black and Gold this season. He’ll be featured in a top role as left wing with David Krejci and David Backes and with marching orders to shoot the puck like he never shot it in his previous stint in Boston. 

For the Bruins, it’s about getting another look at a candidate to play left wing beside Krejci with both Ryan Spooner and Tim Schaller, with limitations to their respective games, unable to fully grasp that same opportunity. 

“My hope is that Heinen can come in and give us some good hockey. He’s a skill player and he’s been down there for a while, and he’s back up again because he’s been playing well,” said Claude Julien of the Bruins rookie, who had four goals and seven points in his past five games with Providence. “Hopefully he can play well here also. It’s about getting some confidence. When he went down to [the AHL] the pace of his game had to get a little bit better, and in the battles coming up with the puck along the walls. Those are the kinds of things we thought he could work on down in Providence.”

Heinen knows he needs to shoot the puck a bit more to show off his offense after a seven-game stint with the Bruins where he went scoreless, was a minus-2 and had just six shots on net.

“Being hard on the walls, playing fast and shooting the puck, those were all things I was working on [in Providence],” said Heinen, who has seven goals and 13 points in 13 games for the P-Bruins after being assigned to Providence. “I was doing what they told me to do [in Providence] and that’s shoot the puck. They were going in, and I was getting some good opportunities on the power play. It’s seriously tough to get chances [at the NHL level], so you can’t pass them up when you have chances. That was kind of my focus down there.”

Fellow fourth-line energy winger Anton Blidh has been shipped to Providence after three solid games with the Black and Gold. 

Julien said Blidh goes back to Providence having adequately shown that he can play in the NHL. He clearly showed the Bruins that he understands his role as a player that stirs things up a bit and gets his nose dirty on a regular basis.

“[Blidh] was fine. No issues there. He does his job. He plays with lots of energy and obviously he’s getting more experience. He’s a lot better at understanding his positioning within the game and what he has to do,” said Julien. “I thought he helped us out for the time that he was here.”

With Heinen and Acciari both in the lineup and Blidh back in Providence, that means Jimmy Hayes will be scratched after dressing for three of the past four games for Boston.

Saturday, Dec. 10: Vegas, scoring on NHL governors' minds

Saturday, Dec. 10: Vegas, scoring on NHL governors' minds

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while doing some early Christmas shopping ahead of the late rush. 

*Mike Zeisberger sits down with a quartet of NHL governors and discusses a number of hot topics including the Vegas franchise and scoring around the league. 

*Carolina Hurricanes owner Peter Karmanos has been removed from the NHL Board of Governor’s Executive Committee amid rumors that the Canes might be a prime candidate for relocation. 

*Pierre McGuire weighs in on Connor McDavid’s war of words on the ice and Carey Price losing his mind in the crease against the New Jersey Devils. To that end, Wayne Gretzky liked seeing McDavid get a little combative at such a young age. 

*The New York Islanders signed Cal Clutterbuck to a five year contract extension, and some are skeptical it will turn out well for the Isles.

*David Pastrnak is a premier scoring threat in the league, and Scott Cullen has some details behind that. I will say this: his stock falling in the draft had less to do with his size or heaviness, and more to do with him being concussed for a long stretch of time during the year leading up to the draft. 

*The Florida Panthers are really struggling to stay positive with a 1-5-0 record since the ownership group and management decided to fire Gerard Gallant. 

*For something completely different: Baywatch stars then and now.