Notes: Bruins to stay at Lake Placid on off-days

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Notes: Bruins to stay at Lake Placid on off-days

By JoeHaggerty
CSNNE.com

WILMINGTON, Mass. There were indications the Bruins werent going to spend the two off days in Montreal between Games Three and Four against the Canadiens during the first round of the playoffs, and that became official on Tuesday.

Rather than travel all the way back to Boston for a couple of days of practice, however, the Bs are going to head to the setting of the 1980 Miracle on Ice for several days away from the Montreal circus.

Following Game Three on Monday, the Bruins will travel to Lake Placid - home of the United States' stunning Olympic victory over the Soviet Union in 1980 - where they will practice on Tuesday and Wednesday. The team will then head back to Montreal on Wednesday evening to get ready for Thursdays game at the Bell Centre.

The Bruins dont have many American players on the roster, but going to Lake Placid will be incredibly meaningful for goaltender Tim Thomas.

Thomas grew up a youngster in Flint, Michigan inspired by the 1980 Team USA goaltender, Jim Craig, and has always spoken glowingly about the Miracle on Ice squad. Now hell be able to practice on the same surface where they pulled off one of hockey's - and, in fact, one of sports' - greatest upsets.

It's an inspired move by Bs president Cam Neely and general manager Peter Chiarelli to get the team into a friendlier environment outside of Quebec.

Count Milan Lucic among the Bruin players looking forward to the hostility getting kicked up between the Bs and Canadiens once the first puck gets dropped in anger on Thursday night.

Lucic aptly described the mindsets of both fan bases while getting ready for the 33rd postseason matchup between the two squads.

Its definitely going to be there. Our fans are going to want to see us beat the hell out of them and their fans are going to want to see them beat the hell out of us, said Lucic. We know the energy is going to be high in both buildings, and thats what makes the rivalry so great. The fans are so pumped up about it.

Mark Recchi refused all questions about the Max Pacioretty statements he made the last time Montreal was coming to town - he said the Montreal medical staff publicly embellished Pacioretty's injuries in an attempt to force the NHL to punish Zdeno Chara - and said he didnt care about what reception was waiting for him when he get to the Bell Centre.

There was also a report that Recchi, a former Canadien, had never reached out to apologize to the Montreal medical staff, but he wasnt really willing to go there at all.

Im not talking about it, said Recchi. I dont care. I have a job to do. I dont really care. I said it was the last time I was speaking about it the last time. Ive got a job to do. I spent five wonderful years there, and thats about it.

Steve Kampfer was present at the Bs practice facility at Ristuccia Arena, but was rehabbing his knee injury rather than taking part on any of the practice drills on the ice.

Claude Julien was barking out orders at the beginning of practice as he put his players through the paces, but said the emotion wasnt anything out of the ordinary.

It was about clarifying the message of what we were trying to accomplish. My voice might have been raised, but I wasnt barking, said Julien.

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

Julien: 'A lot of problematic things' in Bruins loss to Avalanche

Julien: 'A lot of problematic things' in Bruins loss to Avalanche

BOSTON – The Bruins simply weren’t ready to play on Thursday night when the puck was dropped against the Colorado Avalanche at TD Garden. 

They fell down quickly by a 2-0 score, had a couple of completely inept power plays in the first period that sucked all the game’s momentum away from them and received some subpar goaltending from Anton Khudobin on the way to a 4-2 loss to the lowly Avs. About the only B’s person above reproach in this one was David Pastrnak after scoring a pair of goals in the second period to get Boston back into the game, but it all fell short in a very frustrating, lackadaisical loss to a Western Conference team that isn’t very good. 

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Needless to say B’s coach Claude Julien wasn’t too happy after a loss where the Bruins might have had more success with a smarter approach to holding the puck. 

“There were a lot of problematic things [in the loss]. No doubt that the power play could have helped us in the first period, and failed to do that. They’ve got to be better,” said Julien. “We needed some saves tonight, and we didn’t get them. [Anton Khudobin] has got to be better. 

“A lot of things here that we can be better at, and take responsibility [for]. But at the same time, you got to move on here.  It’s one of those nights that had we been smarter from the get go, we would have had a chance.”

Clearly it was about a lacking group effort when dissecting the loss, and the minus-3 for David Krejci on Thursday night marked back-to-back negative performances from the playmaking Czech center in big spots. The goaltending was shoddy with Anton Khudobin allowing four goals on 22 shots for Colorado, and unable to make plays on a couple of Colorado shots from outside the painted area that built up the Avs lead in the first place. 

But it was also very much about the inability of the Bruins to generate consistent offense outside of David Pastrnak’s offensive burst in the second period, and the complete breakdown of the Boston power play in the opening 20 minutes. The Bruins struggled to enter the zone in their first PP possession of the game, and then allowed a Nathan MacKinnon shorthanded goal after Torey Krug futilely dove at the blue line to try and keep the puck in the offensive zone. 

The Krug misplay at the offensive blue line gave MacKinnon a clear path the net, and he buried a wrist shot past Khudobin to get the one-sided loss rolling. Beyond the costly mistakes that ended up in the back of the net, the Bruins looked sloppy and slow-reacting in their breakouts and more than willing to settle for outside perimeter shots.

That doesn’t exactly make for a winning combo even when it comes against a flawed, underachieving team like Colorado, and especially when it comes less than 24 hours after a hard-fought road game in Washington DC. 

“I think we were still sleeping there early in the game and they were able to capitalize on their opportunities. We couldn’t claw our way back,” said Brad Marchand, who picked up an assist on David Pastrnak’s second goal of the night on a perfect dish for the one-timer. “I think it was definitely a mental [block]. You’re able to battle through that physical fatigue. It was more the mental mistakes and not being prepared right off the hop of the start of the game. Again, that’s kind of where we lost it.”

The sleepwalking Bruins lost Thursday night’s valuable two points as soon as the opening puck was dropped against the Avalanche, of course, and the Bruins never got out of lollygag mode at a time when intensity should have been automatic.