Practice update: Chara down low again on PP

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Practice update: Chara down low again on PP

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.com

VANCOUVER The Bruins got the blood flowing after their cross-country flight from Boston to British Columbia on Monday afternoon, and put in a full day Tuesday afternoon at the Rogers Centre home of the Canucks.Rich Peverley once again donned the Gold jersey and skated with the Patrice BergeronMark RecchiBrad Marchand line, and Shawn Thornton took his rightful place on the Merlot line with Gregory Campbell and Daniel Paille. The lines were as follows:
Lucic-Krejci-Horton
Marchand-Bergeron-PeverleyRecchi
Ryder-Kelly-Seguin
Paille-Campbell-ThorntonSo the Bruins lines looked exactly as they did at the end of the Tampa Bay Lightning series, and the power play once again had a familiar look as well.Zdeno Chara was camped down low near the net with Nathan Horton and David Krejci on the first power play unit, and Tomas Kaberle and Dennis Seidenberg manned the two point positions. Mark Recchi, Rich Peverley, Michael Ryder, Tyler Seguin and Milan Lucic all seeing time on the second power play unit along with Andrew Ference and Patrice Bergeron at the point spots, so its anybodys guess who takes the ice on Wednesday night.The Bs PP will need more juice than the 8.2 percent success rate that got them through the first three rounds of the playoffs if theyre going to take down a Canucks team that led the NHL in goals scored and goals against in a magically dominant regular season.

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

Julien wonders whether Bruins shutout loss was fatigue-related

Julien wonders whether Bruins shutout loss was fatigue-related

BOSTON – The Bruins didn’t show anything on the ice in Monday afternoon’s 4-0 matinee loss, and that’s not really any kind of an overstatement.

The scoring chances were almost nonexistent despite 32 shots on net, the second period was dreadful as the Bruins gave up three goals over the course of a six minute span and there was zero added urgency in the third period once the B’s fell behind. The emotion was missing from the drop of the puck to open the game and it never showed up once the Islanders began taking control of the game.

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It was a bitterly disappointing result after the Black and Gold had played so well in their previous five games, and put in strong, winning efforts against the Panthers, Blues and Flyers.

On Monday afternoon, the passes were sloppy and errant all over the ice, there was zero physicality and the Bruins buckled once the Isles turned the intensity up just a little bit in the second period. The game was basically over once Nikolay Kulemin snapped one home wide open from the slot area with Torey Krug, Adam McQuaid and David Krejci all blowing their defensive assignments, and then Tuukka Rask followed it up by allowing a softie to Josh Bailey from a bad angle close to net.  

So Bruins head coach Claude Julien termed it a “flat” performance once it was all over with, and openly wondered whether it was fatigue-related result linked to the compacted schedule Boston has played through this season. Monday marked the seventh straight day that the Bruins held some kind of formal skate, though most of the veteran B's players stayed off the ice during last week's Wednesday off-day practice in Nashville.   

“We were flat tonight, obviously, flat from the get-go. I think that first half of the game, we didn’t give much until they scored that first goal. We were able to stay in, but we certainly weren’t generating much ourselves, from that point of view,” said Claude Julien. “His is really the first year, for me as well, going through a condensed schedule, and I’m certainly not using that as an excuse, is it fatigue?. . . But we were flat tonight. How do you explain it? I don’t know. I know that it’s frustrating. I know that it’s disappointing. That’s all I can say.

“Whether it’s mental fatigue, whatever it is. We made some mistakes tonight like, from the goals you look at, we weren’t even in the position that we’re normally in. So we were totally out of whack, as far as even defending. When you give that first goal that much room in the middle of the ice, your D’s go on the wrong side, your weak-side forward is way on the other side, and you open up the slot area, that’s something I haven’t seen much of this year. I think it said a lot from our game tonight.”

The compacted schedule certainly could be a factor for a Bruins team that’s played more games than anybody else in the Eastern Conference to this point, but the B’s also had 48 hours to recharge after winning a Saturday matinee over the Flyers. So the fatigue excuse seems a little far-fetched for a hockey club that’s no-showed a few too many times this season, and did it again on Monday afternoon against one of the worst teams in the NHL.