Bruins like what they see from Sauve

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Bruins like what they see from Sauve

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.com Bruins Insider Follow @hackswithhaggs
BOSTON -- Every year a young player or two impresses Bruins officials enough to make it all the way through training camp, and this year Max Sauve has been that player. The France native has been near the top of Bostons watch list since they made him a second round draft pick in 2008, and his stock continued to rise last season after putting up 21 goals in his first full AHL season.

Sauve projects to be a third line winger capable of killing penalties and popping in the occasional goal. A player like that holds plenty of uses for an NHL team. While Jordan Caron is still ahead of him on the organizational depth chart heading into the final week of training camp, Claude Julien likes what hes seen from Sauve.

We all know he's got skill, we all know he's got speed and he's a guy that's pretty dangerous around the net," Julien said. "He showed that in Providence last year. I think he has a lot of attributes that will allow him to play in the NHL. But in order to be an NHL regular, you have to do a little bit more than just skate and shoot. The one thing is competing for that loose puck, which you hear me say a lot about players. I'm not a big fan of players who go in the corner and come out with the puck once out of every ten tries.

You don't have to be physical and you don't have to bowl people over, but you just have to want the puck badly enough that you want to come out with it. A skilled guy can go in there and be smart enough to come out with the puck if he really wants to. That's the part that I keep putting a lot of importance to when I talk to players about that.

Given the eventual role that Sauve projects to have at the NHL level, Julien knows that his compete level needs to much more heightened in different areas of the rink. Sauve exhibits the exact same timidity that Tyler Seguin fought through as a rookie in the NHL last season.

But its something that seems long gone for Seguin this season, and it needs to be cleared from Sauves game if hes going to make it.

We saw the same thing with Seguin last year, said Julien. Tyler's a much better player this year when it comes to competing for those loose pucks and you know we need to see that from Max as well.

Sauve has a couple more games to show the Bruins exactly what theyre looking before hell be asked to find it in Providence this season.

Joe Haggerty can be reached at jhaggerty@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs

Julien wonders whether Bruins shutout loss was fatigue-related

Julien wonders whether Bruins shutout loss was fatigue-related

BOSTON – The Bruins didn’t show anything on the ice in Monday afternoon’s 4-0 matinee loss, and that’s not really any kind of an overstatement.

The scoring chances were almost nonexistent despite 32 shots on net, the second period was dreadful as the Bruins gave up three goals over the course of a six minute span and there was zero added urgency in the third period once the B’s fell behind. The emotion was missing from the drop of the puck to open the game and it never showed up once the Islanders began taking control of the game.

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It was a bitterly disappointing result after the Black and Gold had played so well in their previous five games, and put in strong, winning efforts against the Panthers, Blues and Flyers.

On Monday afternoon, the passes were sloppy and errant all over the ice, there was zero physicality and the Bruins buckled once the Isles turned the intensity up just a little bit in the second period. The game was basically over once Nikolay Kulemin snapped one home wide open from the slot area with Torey Krug, Adam McQuaid and David Krejci all blowing their defensive assignments, and then Tuukka Rask followed it up by allowing a softie to Josh Bailey from a bad angle close to net.  

So Bruins head coach Claude Julien termed it a “flat” performance once it was all over with, and openly wondered whether it was fatigue-related result linked to the compacted schedule Boston has played through this season. Monday marked the seventh straight day that the Bruins held some kind of formal skate, though most of the veteran B's players stayed off the ice during last week's Wednesday off-day practice in Nashville.   

“We were flat tonight, obviously, flat from the get-go. I think that first half of the game, we didn’t give much until they scored that first goal. We were able to stay in, but we certainly weren’t generating much ourselves, from that point of view,” said Claude Julien. “His is really the first year, for me as well, going through a condensed schedule, and I’m certainly not using that as an excuse, is it fatigue?. . . But we were flat tonight. How do you explain it? I don’t know. I know that it’s frustrating. I know that it’s disappointing. That’s all I can say.

“Whether it’s mental fatigue, whatever it is. We made some mistakes tonight like, from the goals you look at, we weren’t even in the position that we’re normally in. So we were totally out of whack, as far as even defending. When you give that first goal that much room in the middle of the ice, your D’s go on the wrong side, your weak-side forward is way on the other side, and you open up the slot area, that’s something I haven’t seen much of this year. I think it said a lot from our game tonight.”

The compacted schedule certainly could be a factor for a Bruins team that’s played more games than anybody else in the Eastern Conference to this point, but the B’s also had 48 hours to recharge after winning a Saturday matinee over the Flyers. So the fatigue excuse seems a little far-fetched for a hockey club that’s no-showed a few too many times this season, and did it again on Monday afternoon against one of the worst teams in the NHL.