Haggerty: Five thoughts from Bruins-Panthers

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Haggerty: Five thoughts from Bruins-Panthers

SUNRISE, FL Here are five thoughts from the first period with the Bruins down by a 1-0 score after the first 20 minutes of action at the BankAtlantic Center.

FIRST PERIOD

1) Tough first period for a Bruins team looking for a break. The Bs play a good, solid period and Tim Thomas looks good enough between the pipes. But allowing a goal on six shots faced still isnt getting it done and there are a lot of high, unaltered shots that are somehow getting through Thomas on the way to the Boston net. He still needs to be better.

2) Perfectly legal hip check on Brad Marchand from Brian Campbell, and the Florida defenseman refuses to drop the gloves with Patrice Bergeron of all people to answer for it. Then Marchand chases after Campbell and gets an unsportsmanlike conduct call when he goes looking for retribution. Marchand needs to play a certain way while also realizing hes not going to get any breaks from the referees. But its pretty weak sauce for Campbell refusing to man up when challenged by Bergeron.

3) Awful, awful call on Shawn Thornton that led to the Bruins goal. Keaton Ellerby basically fell down with Thornton on his back near the side boards and the Bruins enforcer was called for cross-checking. Of course it led to a Florida power play goal after the Bruins had played a decent opening period. Just the way things are breaking for the Bruins right now.

4) Seventh straight game the Bruins have allowed the first goal to their opponents. They cant be successful if theyre constantly chasing after it, and the Panthers are the kind of team that will lock it down once they have a lead.

5) Jordan Caron looks good skating around with Milan Lucic and David Krejci. Good bid for Caron on a drop-back pass from Lucic near the blue line that opened No. 38 up for a big wrist shot. But Jose Theodore was there to make the stop.

SECOND PERIOD

1) The Bs fourth line on the ice again for two more goals against. Theyve had an up-and-down year and just havent been as good as they were last season, and tonights another example though its not close to all the Merlot Lines fault.

2) Zdeno Chara needs to quit the first breakout pass through the middle of the ice. One of them handcuffs Gregory Campbell, gets the Bs hemmed into their own zone and turns into a John Madden goal. There were two or three other instances of those passes turning into scoring chances for Florida tonight.

3) Brad Marchand has been effectively bottled up after taking that Brian Campbell hit in the first period. They havent been on the ice for any of the goals allowed, but they also have also only generated four shots on net while KrejciLucicCaron has two shots on net. Not enough offensive chances created by those top two lines.

4) Dennis Seidenberg is getting knocked off the puck left, right and center. Love the German defenseman but he looks as tired as anybody else on the Bruins team after taking a lot of hits and pounding over the last two years.

5) Just no snap from the Bruins. Watch Marco Sturm diving head first into the net to try and get at a Tim Thomas rebound. He was unsuccessful, but nobody on the Bruins is playing with that kind of bounce or emotional urgency.

Acciari notches first NHL goal in Bruins win over Predators

Acciari notches first NHL goal in Bruins win over Predators

BOSTON – It took until his 43rd game in the NHL to finally score his first goal with the Bruins, but Rhode Island native Noel Acciari said it made him appreciate it all the more when that moment finally did arrived on Tuesday night. The 25-year-old Acciari finished off a Riley Nash feed on a 3-on-1 odd-man rush that gave the Bruins an insurance goal they badly needed in a 4-1 win over the Nashville Predators at TD Garden.

Then David Pastrnak hit Acciari with a shaving cream pie to the face during the NESN broadcast as a way to commemorate his teammate’s big scoring moment, and Torey Krug immediately fished the puck out of the net to make certain that Acciari would get it.

So it was the best of both worlds with the team-oriented Acciari, who watched his Bruins win to go right along with his hallmark scoring moment that he’ll remember forever.

“Your first NHL goal is a special feeling and to finally have it, you know, like I said before I couldn’t have done it without the other guys, the other four, five guys on the ice. But it feels good,” said Acciari, who has a goal and four points in 24 games this season in Boston. “It just shows you how special it is. It’s not going to come the first game you play; it could come 10, 20, for me probably over 40, but it still feels the same.”

Clearly it’s more about providing a physical, heavy and aggressive opponent when Acciari suits up for the Black and Gold, and it’s less about providing offensive production that’s really a bonus from the fourth line. The focus on throwing hits, aggravating opponents and playing with extra energy have been a big part of Acciari’s game since his return from Providence, and that is absolutely been by design.

“I think I kind of strayed [from my strengths] when I got back from my injury – I kind of strayed away from the hitting game,” said Acciari. “Just getting in on the fore-check and, you know, just kind of getting back to that down in Providence was huge and kind of get my confidence up down there helped out a lot. So when I got the call up I was ready for anything.”

He’s certainly played like he was ready for anything while posting a goal and two points along with a plus-4 in his first four games back for the Bruins organization. Acciari did all of that while leading everybody in Tuesday night’s game with eight registered hits in the win over Nashville. So the 5-foot-10, 208-pound Acciari gave a pretty good example against the Predators of just what he can do with steady ice time and the trust of his teammates as all of the hockey clubs in the East gear up to finish strong for the playoffs.

Now all Acciari has to do is continue to play consistently, punish opposing players and chip in a little offense from time and time as he carves out a permanent role on Boston’s fourth line, and helps his team win a few along the way. 

Florio on issues NFL may face with Raiders in Las Vegas

Florio on issues NFL may face with Raiders in Las Vegas

Mike Florio joins Quick Slants to discuss the problems of the Raiders moving to Las Vegas, and the latest NFL rule changes.