Notes: Bruins make Sunday practice a scrimmage


Notes: Bruins make Sunday practice a scrimmage

By Joe Haggerty
WILMINGTON A light day for the Bruins on a rare Sunday morning practice at Ristuccia Arena on the morning after they clinched the Northeast Division titled and dashed the dreams of the Atlanta Thrashers.The Bs held a shinny scrimmage on the ice after dividing up the roster between players with black and white jerseys, and then ended things with a spirited shootout. The White Team ended up winning by a healthy amount, and the highlight during the shootout was Tyler Seguin pointing at Tuukka Rask to call his shot before whistling a puck past his glove hand for the score.That meant the Black Team would be footing the bill for a team lunch once the squad hits the Big Apple after besting the white team in 5-on-5, 4-on-4 and 3-on-3 competition followed by the shootout. Things ended when Daniel Paille fanned on a shootout attempt on Rask, and then flung his stick down the ice in mock anger once his black team had been defeated.The Bs players appreciated the light practice fare chosen by Bs coach Claude Julien before loading up for the short flight to New York City for Monday nights game against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden. Julien talked after Saturdays win about finding the middle ground between working and resting his team prior to the playoffs, and Sunday seemed to have that in mind.It was a tough loss for the Black Team, but well get them next time, said Brad Marchand about the fun-hearted scrimmage. It was a surprise coming in today, but we know we have a lot of work to do still.The coaches know that we know we have to be ready for each and every game, and even if we have a fun day today we have to come to the rink tomorrow prepared to do a job. Its always good of them to give us that scrimmage day, and respect and acknowledge how hard the season has been for us.Every player was accounted for at practice, and it appeared that the Bs managed to leave Saturday afternoons win against the Thrashers with a healthy unit. Shawn Thornton said that the swelling is still traveling through his sinuses from the cut on his forehead, and it didnt look like hed be available Monday night against the Rangers.Joe Haggerty can be reached at Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs.

Spooner responds positively to healthy scratch


Spooner responds positively to healthy scratch

BOSTON -- It wasn’t perfect by any means, but Saturday night represented a step in a positive direction for Ryan Spooner.

The 24-year-old speedy forward was scratched for the home opener against New Jersey in classic message-sending fashion by Bruins coach Claude Julien, and deserved it based on a passive lack of production combined with some costly mistakes as well. So he stayed quiet, put in the work and then returned to the lineup Saturday vs. the Montreal Canadiens where he scored a power play goal in the 4-2 loss to the Habs at TD Garden.

“He was better,” agreed Claude Julien. “He was better tonight.”

Spooner could have had even more as he got a couple of great scoring chances in the first period vs. Montreal, but Carey Price was able to turn away a couple of free looks at the Montreal net. So the Bruins forward felt he possibly left points on the ice after it was all said and done, but also clearly played his best game of the young season after going from the press box back to the lineup.

“Yeah, I had like maybe four or five [chances] that I could have scored on,” said Spooner. “I’ve just got to bear down on those [scoring opportunities], and a lot [of them] in the first period. It’s good that I’m getting those looks, but I have to score on them.

“I’m just going to go out there and just try to play. I can’t really think about [fighting to hold a spot]. I’ve just got to go out there and try to play, I guess, the game I can and try to use the speed that I have.”

The Spooner power play strike was a nifty one with the shifty forward and David Backes connecting on a pass across the front of the net, and the young B’s forward showing the necessary assertiveness cutting to the net from his half-wall position.

Spooner had five shot attempts overall in the game, and was one of the few Bruins players really getting the chances they wanted against a pretty effective Montreal defensive group. Now it’s a matter of Spooner, along with linemates Backes and David Krejci, scoring during 5-on-5 play and giving the Bruins a little more offensive balance after riding Boston’s top line very hard during the regular season’s first couple of weeks. 

Sunday, Oct. 23: Hall fitting in with Devils


Sunday, Oct. 23: Hall fitting in with Devils

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while waiting to find out which Walking Dead character got brained by Lucille in last season’s cliffhanger. I’m going with Abraham.

*The SI roundtable talks about the future of Jacob Trouba, and where he’ll end up going when his current situation resolves itself.

*P.K. Subban is apparently getting very comfortable in Nashville, and enjoying life in a city with NFL football.

*Fun conversation between Yahoo’s Josh Cooper and Brad Marchand about a whole range of random topics.

*A cool father-son story where they became the goaltending tandem for the Ontario Reign through a series of dominoes falling after Jonathan Quick went down with injury for the Los Angeles Kings.

*Pro Hockey Talk has Taylor Hall serving as exactly what the New Jersey Devils have needed for the last couple of years.

*For something completely different: FOH (Friend of Haggs) Dan Shaughnessy says that the MLB playoffs couldn’t have played out any worse for the Boston Red Sox.