Campbell taken off Bruins' power play unit


Campbell taken off Bruins' power play unit

By Danny Picard Follow @dannypicard
BOSTON Bruins coach Claude Julien thought that putting Gregory Campbell on the power play in Game 5 would produce some offense on the man advantage.

The Bs went 0-for-4 in the experiment, and during Sundays practice at the TD Garden, Julien took Campbell off the power play.

Campbell is a grinder; he knows his role. So when he was asked to jump on the power play, he realized that he only had one job to do: screen Vancouver goaltender Roberto Luongo.

Its a nice opportunity for me, said Campbell after Sundays practice. I dont see much of that. But I think my role was really to park myself in front of the net and to cause that havoc, disturbance whatever you want to call it in front of the net. Unfortunately, we didnt get set up in Game 5, and I think that was a challenge for us because we have very aggressive forwards.

In my career Ive played there before, added Campbell. Thats kind of my style. Im not a flashy player. Im a guy thats ready to go in front there. We have some big shots on the point, so if we can get those through, and the screen is there, its going to make it easier to get quality scoring chances.

Juliens two sets of power-play units at Sundays practice saw six forwards: David Krejci, Milan Lucic, Patrice Bergeron, Michael Ryder, Rich Peverley, and Mark Recchi.

Assuming that those will be the same six forwards on the power play in Game 6, it seems Campbells time on the man advantage are over.

But you cant say they didnt try.

We didn't get from Campbell what we hoped to because we never got the set that we wanted, Julien said on Sunday. And Greg is one of those guys that is willing to stand right in front of the net. He's one of those guys who is very good at tipping the puck, and that's one of the reasons we put him there.

If you look back at Michael Ryder's power play goal here, it was because of Gregory Campbell that he scored, added Julien. Luongo never saw it. He did such a great job. Our intention was to put him in that position last game, but, you know, when you don't get your set and the puck keeps going down the other end, you don't see the usefulness of his role.

So at one point we moved guys around hoping that somebody else could be the guy that could carry the puck in and have different looks. When one thing doesn't work, you go to the next. It's as simple as that."

Danny Picard is on Twitter at http:twitter.comDannyPicard.

B's determined to 'keep it going' during good offensive run

B's determined to 'keep it going' during good offensive run

BRIGHTON, Mass. -- The Bruins are going through a nice, little bountiful stretch of offense right now after a half-season of struggle.

The Bruins are averaging more than three goals per game in their last 12 contests, and have scored a whopping 22 goals in their last six games including dropping six scores on the Flyers Saturday afternoon at TD Garden. Combine that with the 7-for-25 performance on the power play during the month of January, and things are finally starting to catch up with a Bruins team that was all shoot/no score for months of frustrating hockey this season.

“If you want sustained success then you have to be good defensively, but you also have to score some goals. That’s definitely part of it and we have to keep it going,” said Patrice Bergeron, who has four goals and eight points in his last nine games after struggling out of the starting gate. “You’re not going to get rewarded every night like we did [against the Flyers], but you have to find that consistency where you’re close to having that every night.”

One thing nobody should expect out of the B’s, however, is to get outside of what they do well now that they’ve started slapping some numbers up on the board. Instead the Bruins are intent on their bedrock of disciplined defense and sensational goaltending with the added offense just making it much tougher to beat them these days.

“I don’t know if we can stand here and say we’re going to sustain that we’re scoring lots of goals. I think what we need to sustain here is winning more games than we lose,” said Claude Julien. “That’s what we’ve got to sustain. Whether it’s a 1-0 or 2-1 game, or it’s a 5-2 or 5-3 game it doesn’t really matter. It’s about winning hockey games much more than it’s about how much you scored, and how much you don’t score.

“Overall when I look at the scoring chances we’re giving up per game, that doesn’t seem to have changed. Goals allowed may have changed a little bit lately, but overall I think we’ve been very steady in that area [of defense].”

So now the Bruins will again be looking for that ideal balance of offense/defense when they take the ice against the Islanders on Monday afternoon for their second straight matinee at TD Garden. 

Morrow has 'confident feeling' as he readies to jump into B's lineup


Morrow has 'confident feeling' as he readies to jump into B's lineup

BRIGHTON, Mass. -- It’s been a long month of bag skates and lonely practices for Bruins defenseman Joe Morrow.

That’s about to change thanks to injuries to both Kevan Miller and Colin Miller, who are both not expected to be able to play against the New York Islanders on Monday afternoon at TD Garden. That means Morrow will be in the B’s lineup for the first time since a Dec. 12 win over the Montreal Canadiens, a span of 16 consecutive B’s games that the 24-year-old has been watching from the press box.

Morrow skated in a pairing with John-Michael Liles in Sunday’s practice at Warrior Ice Arena prior to Monday’smatinee, and obviously he’s looking forward to getting back into games given this season’s sporadic practice schedule.

“[Playing well after sitting for long stretches] isn’t necessarily something you want to be good at, but if you are good at then it’s a good tool to have in your bag. It’s a confident feeling that I’ll be able to come in [and play well],” said Morrow, who has an assist and a minus-3 rating in 13 games for the Black and Gold this season. “I’ve stayed in good shape and worked hard in practice, and that’s all I can do up until this point.

“Put simply, [this year’s compacted schedule] is exhausting. Countless times I’ve skated by myself, and anybody would tell you there’s nothing harder than skating by yourself on a sheet of ice. Mentally and physically it’s just exhausting. There haven’t been many practices and there haven’t been many game-type situations in the practices we do have. Skating with the whole team is almost like a pregame skate scenario. But you’re still skating every day, so it’s putting it upon yourself to go out there and stay ready for things.”

The one issue for Morrow, a former first round pick, over the last couple of seasons has been maintaining a high level of play once he draws his way into the lineup. It feels like there’s a drop-off in his play once he’s played a few games in a row whether it’s physical mistakes or mental lapses in his play, and that’s something he wants to avoid when given an opportunity to suit up.

“I feel like when I have played this year that I’ve been quite consistent and that I’ve played well,” said Morrow, the last remaining part of the 2013 Tyler Seguin trade still in a Bruins uniform. “I’m just in a situation that the cards are playing out the way that they are, so it depends on how many games I get whether it’s one, two, 30 or however many games are left [in the season]. It’s realistically entirely up to me. If I can shake the rust out in the first couple of shifts and start from there, it’s going to be a big positive in my book. It’s the really the only option I have left now.”

Given that Colin Miller began skating on his own on Sunday morning, it might not be a very big window for Morrow to impress upon the coaches just how badly he wants to play. But one would expect he’s going to bring his best on Monday against the Isles with the hopes that it will be somebody else sitting up in the press box when it once again becomes a D-man numbers game for the 7-8 players for six lineup spots.