Pistons coach, and former Celtics assistant, Lawrence Frank isn't buying the notion that the C's are becoming one of the NBA's also-rans.
Not by a long shot.
"I think they're going to be there at the end," told Comcast SportsNet's Greg Dickerson in a one-on-one interview Sunday. "You have a group that -- because of injuries, limited practice time, some new pieces -- is not where they're going to be. But Doc Rivers is the master of understanding how to pace this group.
"Once they get Brandon Bass back after the All-Star break and they start getting a complete roster, they'll round into shape exactly the time they need to. I'd be very, very careful about writing them off . . .
"If the league is questioning, 'Oh, Boston may not be the same,' you have not only prideful guys but unbelievably competitive and professional guys that would like nothing better than to prove everyone else wrong. And they're very capable of doing it."
BRIGHTON, Mass -- Life as an emergency practice goalie can be pretty rough.
Take, for instance, Mass State Trooper Keith Segee, who has suited up a couple of times for the Boston Bruins this season during times of need, and did exactly that during Wednesday’s optional practice for the Black and Gold.
Segee got caught with a Zdeno Chara cranked slap shot right in the family jewels, and then had to walk…er, crawl it off like any normal human being would after getting bombed by a guy that can shoot it 108-mph.
“He’s got the hardest shot of anybody I’ve ever seen,” said Segee, with a smile. “I had to take two or three laps around the rink after that one and skate it off.”
Give Chara credit for moving right over to Segee and giving him a tap on the backside for skating it off, and risking life, limb and perhaps a lot more to stop a few pucks for the Black and Gold.
Segee played at Revere High and Salem State College before joining the Mass State Police, and got the emergency gig through Bruins goalie coach Bob Essensa when Boston needed a practice goalie at the end of last week in Tuukka Rask’s absence.
Let’s hope Segee is okay at this point, or the Bruins captain could be looking at a few more moving violations in his future.
Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while gearing up for the last couple of weeks.
*The Edmonton Oilers will return to the Stanley Cup playoffs this season as it looks like Canada will be well-represented once again after last year’s absence.
*Let’s meet the man behind the push to bring the NHL to China, and introduce the game to billions of people.
*Eric Staal is enjoying his second act with the Minnesota Wild, and even better he’s totally flourishing there as well.
*Let’s hear it for the US Women’s team that stuck to their guns and got an unprecedented deal with USA Hockey that will allow them to focus on winning for the next four years.
*PHT writer and FOH (Friend of Haggs) Jason Brough has Steve Stamkos “really close” to a return for the Tampa Bay Lightning, in a concerning development for the Boston Bruins’ playoff hopes.
*Apparently things are getting a little heightened with the Los Angeles Kings as some of their prominent players skipped a media session in Calgary.
*For something completely different: Let’s hear it for the best news of the day, the Cash Cab is coming back.