Fifteen thoughts from Bruins-Sens regulation

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Fifteen thoughts from Bruins-Sens regulation

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.com Bruins Insider Follow @hackswithhaggs

OTTAWA Here are five thoughts from the first period with the Bruins and Senators locked in a scoreless tie after 20 minutes at Scotiabank Place in the first full exhibition game for both squads this season.

1) Some definite first game sloppiness for both sides. Lane MacDermid grabbed a gift turnover in the high slot area, and fumbled the puck away before he could attack the net and create a scoring chance. The Bruins went on a couple of power plays, but couldnt move the puck crisply enough to get any shots on net. Maybe that isnt a preseason problem given last years struggles. Either way the Bruins didnt do much to impress in the first period.

2)The Bruins young players showed a little of their inexperience on a delayed penalty call going against Andrew Ference. The Senators got the extra attacker on the ice, and Jamie Tardif, Dougie Hamilton, Tyler Seguin and Jordan Caron couldnt earn a whistle for more than a minute as Ottawa turned things into a shooting gallery.

3)Four shots on net for former Merrimack superstar Stephane DaCosta in the first period as the Ottawa Senators rookie seems to be making a statement out on the ice. DaCosta could be given a lot of offensive responsibility this season and has shown an unwillingness to aggressively shoot the puck in the past. He looked good in the first 20 minutes.

4)Chris Kelly and Andrew Ference donned the As as alternate captains for tonights game along with Patrice Bergeron, and may give some insight into the teams preference for this seasons alternate captain. Or the Bs could simply opt for a rotating A throughout the season as Claude Julien has done in the past.

5)Twelve saves for Tuukka Rask, who has looked good so far and made several nice stops as the Senators attacked the net during the delayed penalty call. Rasks big spot on Erik Condra midway through the first was the save of the game thus far.

Here are five thoughts from the second period with the Bruins and Senators locked in a 1-1 tie after 40 minutes at Scotiabank Place in the first full exhibition game for both squads this season.

1) Lane MacDermid playing extremely well in each of the first two preseason games for the Bruins, and showing just how much he wants to be in the mix for the Black and Gold. MacDermid is a guy that you dont hear much about during the year, but hes producing offense while proving toughness and a willingness to drop the gloves. He flubbed a great offensive chance in the first period, but he made up for that by knocking in a Shawn Thornton rebound in the second for his second goal in as many nights.

2)Tuukka Rask was beaten by a Brian Lee screamer through heavy traffic in front of the net, but has looked stellar while making 21 saves tonight for the Bruins team thats played in their own end quite a bit. The glove save on Mark Parrish bombing down the left wing was a show-stopper.

3)Nothing to prove for a guy like Shawn Thornton tonight, but hes still skating hard, squeezing off shots and helped set up the first goal with a bid that handcuffed Craig Anderson and created a long rebound. A team-high three shots on net for No. 22.

4) Some good and bad for Colby Cohen tonight. Hes made some nice offensive plays and been generally very good in the offensive zone, but he made a very ill-advised back-handed flip through the slot area in the defensive zone that must have had Claude Julien averting his eyes on the bench. The trials and tribulations of a young defenseman in the NHL, I suppose.

5)Quiet night for Ryan Spooner in his hometown of Kanata, Ontario. A minus-1 in 9:48 of ice time with a pair of giveaways through two periods, and hasnt really been at all noticeable anywhere on the ice.

Here are five thoughts from the third period with the Bruins and Senators locked in a 1-1 tie after 60 minutes at Scotiabank Place and headed for overtime in the first full exhibition game for both squads this season.

1) Not enough offensive punch from Tyler Seguin or Ryan Spooner in a game where they were given some offensive tools to work with. Seguin had a few rushes and a shot on net or two, but both players didnt do enough to create offense in a game where the Bs were outshot by a 30-17 margin.

2) Chris Kelly, Shawn Thornton and Lane MacDermid given some power play time in the third period a reflection from Claude Julien about how well they played as a line in the first preseason game.

3) Benoit Pouliot has shown what he has to offer in a full 60 minute preseason game. He was killing penalties ably with Patrice Bergeron and putting a little offense out there, but he also took a foolish penalty leaving his skates to clean out Brian Lee. The refs arent going to hesitate to call boarding after getting their directive from Brendan Shanahan and thats exactly what they did with Pouliot. Hes going to make his share of aggressive errors that will land him in the box.

4) Defenseman Matt Bartkowski has a knack for working the point on the power play. Hes made several nice cross-ice passes where finding the proper seam was key to making the play. Bartkowski can recognize those seams and create offense, and thats what hes done so far in the preseason. Good to see after it appeared that Steve Kampfer hopped in front of him on the development ladder after last season. Bartkowski led all Bs in ice time and its clear the coaching staff wants to take a long look at him.

5) Reason No. 3,465 why this is preseason: Sens forward Nick Foligno had a 2-on-1 in the closing minute of a tie game and simply fell down before Ottawa could get any shots on Tuukka Rask.

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

Bruins don't poll well in latest New England Sports survey

Bruins don't poll well in latest New England Sports survey

It’s no secret Bruins fans are getting fed up with a hockey team in decline, one that’s missed the playoffs each of the last two years. Now there are numbers to prove it.

Channel Media and Market Research, Inc. came out with its annual New England Sports survey,  tabulating responses from over 14,600 polled, and, according to the numbers, the Bruins are dropping in popularity, fan support and faith in the current management group.

The B’s are holding somewhat steady with 16 percent of voters listing them as their “favorite sports team” behind the Patriots (46 percent) and Red Sox (29 percent) while ahead of the Celtics and Revolution. Claude Julien also ranked ahead of John Farrell among the big four teams in the “coaches/manages most admired” category.

But after sitting at a relative high of ranking at 27 percent for “ownership performance” in 2014 -- they year after their trip to the Cup Finals against the Blackhawks -- the Bruins now rank dead last in that category at 2 percent, behind the Patriots, Red Sox, Celtics and even the Revolution. Ouch, babe.

Also sitting at a lowly 2 percent is Bruins president Cam Neely in the “leadership performance” category. In "management performance," Neely has dropped from a solid 49 percent in 2014 to just 16 percent in this summer’s survey.

So B’s fans are clearly upset with a team that traded away Tyler Seguin, Johnny Boychuk, Milan Lucic and Dougie Hamilton, and has featured a decimated defense corps for each of the last two seasons. But do the B’s fans think that things are getting any better with prospects coming down the pipeline?

Not really.

In the “which team has done the best job making its product better.” category, the Patriots (35 percent) and Red Sox (31 percent) were resting at the top, with the Celtics (27 percent) a respectable third. The Bruins limped in at just 4 percent with a fan base that very clearly sees that, on paper, this upcoming season’s club doesn’t appear to be much better than last year's.

On top of that, only 13 percent of those surveyed believe the Bruins have gotten better over the last year, and 52 percent believe they’ve just gotten worse. A lowly 3 percent of those surveyed think the Bruins have the best chance of the five teams to bring a world championship back to Boston; the Patriots (79 percent), Red Sox (11 percent) and Celtics (5 percent) all ranked higher.

Finally, Zdeno Chara, Tuukka Rask and Jimmy Hayes were at the top of the list of the Boston athletes “who did not meet expectations” last season. None of that is a surprise, given the state of Boston’s defense along with Hayes’ subpar season.

The good news for the Bruins: They still have a passionate fan base. But they need to start reversing course immediately before they do lasting damage to the B’s brand.

Wednesday, August 24: B's dealing with post-Vesey aftermath

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Wednesday, August 24: B's dealing with post-Vesey aftermath

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading with the Olympics coming to a close . . .
 
-- FOH (Friend of Haggs) Kirk Luedeke sorts through the aftermath for the Bruins after losing out on Jimmy Vesey

-- Detroit Red Wings GM Ken Holland gave an interview where he said the Red Wings aren’t Stanley Cup contenders this season. 

-- Related to Holland’s comments, some of the media in Detroit aren’t taking the dose of reality all that well

-- It’s a big season for New Jersey Devils forward Kyle Palmieri, who will be starring for Team USA on the World Cup team. 

 -- PHT writer Cam Tucker says the Buffalo Sabres still have a strong group of forwards even without Jimmy Vesey.

-- Jamie Benn is giving everything to his Dallas Stars team, and that means that the World Cup of Hockey is taking a backseat
 
-- The Colorado Avalanche are nearing the end of their head coaching search as they look for their replacement for Patrick Roy.
 
-- For something completely different: NBC is making the argument that millenials watched the Olympics, but just not on the traditional formats