Thornton gash requires about 40 stitches

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Thornton gash requires about 40 stitches

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.com

BOSTON Shawn Thornton is usually pretty predictable before and after a game.

Prior to a game hes stretching, running, getting loose by himself with headphones and traveling to whatever dark place he needs to transport himself while serving as an enforcer for the Bruins. Afterwards he's usually ready to smile and joke after a victory, or stand up to answer for himself and his teammates after a defeat.

But Thornton was understandably enraged after Tuesday nights 3-0 win over the Blackhawks.He was knocked out of the game in the second period after taking Fernando Pisanis skate blade to his forehead, opening a cut that required 40 stitches to closer. As he skated past the Chicago bench on his way to the medical room, with referee Don VanMassenhoven beside him, one of the Blackhawks -- Thornton still doesn't know who it was -- decided that was an opportune time to open his mouth and begin chirping at the bloodied Bruin.

Thornton shoved at VanMassenhoven and tried to get at the Blackhawks, but the referee pushed him to the Boston dressing room and told the Chicago bench, in most colorful language, to keep quiet. Those guys on their team chirp a lot. I dont know if it's right when someones face is half across the other side of their face, said Thornton. But it's a tough game and people have to live with their actions.
"If you guys ever find out who it is, dont be afraid to send me a Christmas card and let me know who.The play happened immediately after a good scoring chance for the winger, and Thornton tumbled with Pisani into the boards before the sharp blade sliced his skin open just above his right eye. It was purely accidental, even though Thornton and Pisani had exchanged words earlier in the game.

I was fortunate to see it coming after I fell. It's easy to say now, but I knew it was a bad cut. I didnt see how bad it was because they wouldnt let me go look at it, said Thornton.
I knew nothing else was hit other than my forehead. It had happened to me before and it doesnt really hurt when it happens like that; it just feels like you got banged in the head. I know how lucky I am. It could have been a little lower and I could have been in a lot of trouble."

The Bs enforcer briefly considered donning a visor and returning to the game, but eventually it was decided he wouldnt take another shift. Neither Thornton nor coach Claude Julien were certain if hed miss Thursday's matchup against the Maple Leafs, but it might play into allowing Michael Ryder back into the lineup for a game or two while Thornton rests up and heals the nasty slice on his head.

He took a lot of stitches, and the doctors and the trainers deemed it bad enough they didnt want to take that chance, especially when you have to put a helmet on and stuff like that, said Julien. So hopefully hell be fine soon and well know more about it as we go forward tomorrow and the next day. And well see how he is by Thursday.Perhaps the harsh words and whollybush league words from the Chicago benchstemmed from a leg-on-leg hit between Thornton and Pisani in the first that slowed down the Blackhawks forward just a bit, but that's not seemingly going to matter when Thornton starts doing some investigative work on which player said what on the Blackhawks' bench. Draft pick Ryan Button signed an amatuer tryout contract with the Bruins, and will finish out the season with the AHL's Providence Bruins. The 20-year-old defenseman has 5 goals and 30 assists in 69 games for the Prince Albert Raiders and the Seattle Thunderbirds of the Western Hockey League after being a third round pick by the B's in the 2009 Player Entry Draft. Mark Recchi confirmed Tuesday night that he'll retire if the Bruins win the Stanley Cup this season.
"Im hoping we go on a long ride through the playoffs; it just makes it real easy for me to say see you later," said Recchi, 43. "We win and I say Im gone. If we win a championship, Im gone." Patrice Bergeron led the Bruins with seven shots on net, and led all Boston forwards with 20:39 of ice time in a solid all-around performance. From the Bruins' P.R. staff:Nathan Horton has been named the 2011ambassador for the Alliance for Lupus Research, and the Bruins Foundation announced they'll be donating 20,000 to their upcoming "Walk with Us To Cure Lupus." The Boston Bruins Foundation will partner with the Alliance for Lupus Research (ALR) by donating 20,000 to their "Walk with Us To Cure Lupus" walkathon at Castle Island in South Boston on Saturday, June 11, 2011 at 9:00 a.m. To kick-off the partnership, the Boston Bruins are hosting Lupus Awareness Night on Tuesday, March 29 during the BruinsBlackhawks game. All the proceeds from the 5050 raffle will benefit ALR and their Boston "Walk with Us To Cure Lupus" event. Bruins fans can support Horton and the Lupus Walk by texting the word "WALK" to 85944 to make at 10 donation. A one-time donation of 10 will be billed to your mobile phone bill. Messaging & data rates may apply. Donations are collected for the Alliance for Lupus Research by mobilecause.com. Reply STOP to 85944 to stop. Reply HELP to 85944 for help. For terms, see http:www.igfn.orgThe Boston Walk with Us to Cure Lupus event is a 5K (3.1 miles) walk that is designed to raise significant funds and awareness for the quest for a cure for lupus. All walkers are encouraged to raise as much money as possible from family, friends, co-workers and business associates in support of their participation in the walk.Bruins fans can register for the Boston "Walk with Us To Cure Lupus" online at http:walk.lupusresearch.orgboston by emailing evega@lupusresearch.org, jmarks@lupusresearch.org or by phone at 866-WALK-ALR.

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

Sources: Bruins engaged in trade talks involving Ryan Spooner

Sources: Bruins engaged in trade talks involving Ryan Spooner

This probably won’t come as a complete shock to those watching the way things have played out with him this season, but the Bruins have engaged in discussions with multiple teams about a Ryan Spooner trade, per multiple sources with knowledge of the situation. 

The 23-year-old Spooner was mentioned casually a few months ago as possible fodder in a Jacob Trouba deal with the Winnipeg Jets, but that deal never really materialized prior to the Jets signing their young, frontline D-man to a two-year deal. The Carolina Hurricanes, New York Islanders and San Jose Sharks have all expressed interest in Spooner, per one hockey source, as it appears that things simply aren’t going to work out for him in Boston. 

It’s been a challenging year for Spooner with pedestrian numbers of three goals and eight points in 24 games, but there are plenty of mitigating circumstances behind the slow start. Spooner has been pushed into playing left wing for the bulk of the season rather than his natural, preferred center position, and he’s been dropped to the fourth line by Claude Julien over the last few weeks. At times he’s also been pulled from the Bruins power play where he racked up six goals and 17 points working off the half-wall last season.  

Julien talked about the former second round pick in frank terms after this week’s win over the Carolina Hurricanes, which featured a Spooner snipe to the top corner during a successful shootout for the Black and Gold. 

“I think at times that [David Krejci] line goes quiet, other times it’s better. We’ve tried different guys on the left side right now and one [Spooner] might give them speed but doesn’t win as many battles,” said Julien of his search for stability at left wing alongside Krejci and David Backes. “The other way [with Tim Schaller] guys are a little harder right now, and they spend more time in the O-zone. So we’re really trying hard to find the right balance there.”

Trade talks have increased the past few weeks because A) the situation has worsened recently with Spooner’s prolonged stint as a miscast fourth line winger and B) the speedy, skilled forward will most likely be a man without a spot when 22-year-old left winger Frank Vatrano returns sometime around the mid-December range. 

According to one source, the Bruins are asking for a “top six forward” in exchange for a package including Spooner, and it’s a lead pipe certainty they’re looking for some goal-scoring given their 24th ranked offense this season. That represents a bit of an organizational sea change after the Bruins searched low and high for a top-4 defenseman in trade over the summer. The emergence of 20-year-old Brandon Carlo, and the Boston defense’s performance across the board, has lowered the Black and Gold’s priority list need to trade for a D-man. 

The Bruins have scored two goals or fewer in 18 of their 25 games this season and badly need somebody that can put the puck in the net from one of the wing positions. Unfortunately for the Bruins, there aren’t a lot of top-6 forwards readily available that could make an immediate impact. It’s highly doubtful any team is going to fork one over for an asset like Spooner that’s been downgraded due to the way he’s been utilized by the Bruins this season. He hasn't played with the same creativity or confidence this season after posting 13 goals and 49 points as their third line center last season. 

So it remains to be seen what the Bruins will get for Spooner after they offered him and a draft pick to Buffalo for rental forward Chris Stewart a couple of years ago. That was a deal Sabres GM Tim Murray turned down before trading Stewart for considerably less at the trade deadline.

The bottom line: the Bruins are working the phones discussing possible Spooner deals, and it feels like there is some motivation from B’s management to move a player that doesn’t seem like he'll ever be a proper fit in Julien’s system. 

Sunday Dec. 4: Zacha adjusting to life in the NHL

Sunday Dec. 4: Zacha adjusting to life in the NHL

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while marveling at the Bruins setting a franchise record this season for fewest practices in a regular season. Thanks compacted schedule due to the World Cup!

*Pavel Zacha is adjusting to life as a rookie in the NHL with the New Jersey Devils, and things are getting better as they go along.

*Manitoba Moose players relive their favorite Star Wars moments prior to the team holding their Star Wars Night.

*FOH (Friend of Haggs) Elliotte Friedman sits down with new Florida Panthers head coach Tom Rowe to discuss the massive changes in that organization with the firing of Gerard Gallant.

*Good for Anders Nilson putting a rainbow decal on the back of his goalie to mask to support some gay friends that have faced public resistance in their lives.

*Bruce Garrioch has his weekly NHL notes with several players, including Flyers defenseman Andrew MacDonald, potentially on the trade block if anybody wants them.

*PHT writer Cam Tucker has Colorado Avalanche defenseman Erik Johnson suffering a broken leg that will keep him out 6-8 weeks.

*There was no blood for the Vancouver Canucks fans, but there was still plenty of drama in a win over the Maple Leafs.

*For something completely different: The World Baseball Classic works for everybody except for Major League Baseball, and that would appear to be a problem.