Ference honored to show respects to Recchi

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Ference honored to show respects to Recchi

By Danny Picard
CSNNE.com Staff Reporter Follow @dannypicard

BOSTON --If you walked into the Bruins dressing room on Thursdaynight, youd notice Mark Recchis equipment hanging underneath the nameplate ofhis cubby, in its usual spot.

But Recchi wont be playing another NHL game. It was nothingmore than a sign of respect and admiration the Bruins organization holds forthe veteran leader, who helped them raise their sixth Stanley Cup championshipbanner.

Before that banner was raised, Recchi suited up with histeammates one last time and took part in the pregame festivities, whichincluded one final hoisting of the Cup, as well as a surprise gift which wasthrown Recchis way.

Several days before Thursdays season opener, a few Bruinsplayers thought it would be a good idea to give Recchi one more parting gift.They felt they owed it to him.

So just before the 2011 championship banner was raised,Andrew Ference skated to the podium, and from one assistant captain toanother presented him with the teams vintage player of the game jacket,which the Bs busted out last season.

It was originally purchased on eBay by Ference, and it wasput to good use.

On Thursday night, it was handed off to its rightful owner,and the Bruins couldnt be happier to give it to him.

The guys who set it up asked me if they thought it was a good ideaor not, said Ference after Bostons 2-1 season-opening loss to thePhiladelphia Flyers. I thought it was an awesome idea. It was so short a time period, we gotto keep it under wraps. We didnt have to tell anybody. I think there wereabout four people that knew it was happening.

Its tough to find a way to correctly honor a guy with acareer like that, added Ference. We all know hes going to get to the Hall ofFame, and the stuff like that. But I think something from the players means alot to a guy like that.

Hes extremely respected in this room, and around theleague, so any way to show our respect for him is something that we jump on forsure and were honored to do.

Recchi spoke during the first intermission, and said he wassurprised and choked up by the unexpected gift. He also said the jacketwill be placed in a case somewhere in the Bs dressing room, and he wont keepit for himself.

Thursday night was a special moment for every Bruins playerwho was a member of last seasons Stanley Cup run, but everybody in the roomknows how special Recchi was to that team. And on Thursday, they gave him onefinal sendoff.

It was only fitting that Ference was a major part of thatsendoff. Not because he presented Recchi with the jacket, but also becausehell be replacing Recchi as the co-assistant captain (him and Chris Kelly willsplit the title).

And presenting Recchi with the jacket was extra special toFerence.

He brought it, every day, said Ference. Thats the key toany good job or any good career, is to enjoy what youre doing. He truly lovedthe game, and in the course of actually playing, the determination that heshowed. Sometimes you wouldnt even realize it until you watch the highlights,just how hard he was working in the corners and battling and skating for thepuck.

He played beyond his age. He played like a little kid outthere, just with everything he had.

The Bruins lose a whole lot of leadership in Recchi thisseason. But they hope his presence has helped others like Ference learnfrom that leadership, and pick up where he left off.

We strive to live up to the bar that he sets, saidFerence. I mean, thats what leaders do. They set a standard, and put the barout there, and challenge everybody else to try to get where theyre at.

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

Blidh plans to bring some energy to Bruins after call-up

Blidh plans to bring some energy to Bruins after call-up

BRIGHTON, Mass. – Anton Blidh plans on keeping things pretty straightforward on his first call-up to the NHL. 

The former sixth-round pick of the Bruins has earned his stripes at the AHL level with Providence over the last couple of seasons, and comes to Boston as a gritty, energy forward capable of stirring things up in otherwise sleepy games. There’s also a bit of offensive upside for a fourth line-type player with five goals and nine points with 22 penalty minutes and a plus-eight rating in 19 games for the P-Bruins this season. 

It remains to be seen if the Blidh call-up means that the Bruins intend to scratch a player or that somebody is questionable for Saturday afternoon’s game in Buffalo, but Patrice Bergeron did miss Friday’s practice without any real defined reason for his absence. The 21-year-old Swede said he plans to play to his strengths if he gets into the lineup for the Black and Gold, and that could mean getting under the skin of his Sabres opponents. 

“It’s my first time called up, so I’m happy,” said Blidh, who was asked what he'll bring if he gets into the lineup. “I’ll just play simple and play my own game: be hard on the puck and play with some energy. I worked hard [in Providence] and then I got some confidence. I’m not a goal-scorer, but I scored a couple of goals and got some confidence.”

Claude Julien hasn’t been able to catch up Blidh’s work since the season got started, but was pleased by the youngster’s progress in training camp, where he earned notice for his feisty, physical play on a line with Noel Acciari. 

“They said he’s playing well, so they brought him up. We’ll get to see him, hopefully tomorrow,” said Julien. “I didn’t hear a ton of fine details aside from him being a guy that was certainly playing with a lot of energy. I didn’t mind him in training camp either. He works really hard and competes hard, and we could use that.”

That would certainly be the case after watching the Bruins go through the motions for long stretches Thursday night against Carolina before essentially stealing a game that they didn’t deserve to win. 

Friday, Dec. 2: Toews vs. Matthews

Friday, Dec. 2: Toews vs. Matthews

Here are all the links from around the hockey world and what I’m reading, while everybody in New England is in mourning over the latest Gronk booboo. 

*A pretty neat sharpshooting video with Jonathan Toews and that young whippersnapper Auston Matthews squaring off against each other. 

*Craig Custance looks a little deeper into the situation with the Florida Panthers and how things are stabilizing after the rough firing of Gerard Gallant last week. 

*Now. let’s get to the real important stuff: the San Jose Sharks website has put together their Movember rankings for the player’s mustaches. 

*FOH (Friend of Haggs) Bruce Garrioch says that the plans for an outdoor game in Ottawa are again back on the NHL’s agenda. 

*Erik Erlendsson has put together a “Lightning Insider” website where you can find all the latest news about the Tampa Bay franchise. Check it out. 

*As guys such as Anton Khudobin prove when they’re thrust into the starting spot, backup goalies matter in today’s NHL. 

*For something completely different: a mash-up of Kylo Ren and “Girls” from the mad mind of Adam Driver is exactly just that.