Thornton 'very happy' to agree on two-year extension

570024.jpg

Thornton 'very happy' to agree on two-year extension

BOSTON -- Before Monday's 8-0 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs at the TD Garden, the Bruins announced that Shawn Thornton's two-year extension was official.

After the game, Thornton explained why the decision to remain in Boston through the 2013-14 season was an easy one.

"Ive always said I wanted to stay here in Boston," said Thornton. "Its home now. Im very, very happy to get this done, and be around for a couple more years."

"The guys are a great bunch of guys, and its a team thats built with a lot of youth myself excluded obviously but I think they have a bright future here going forward and Id like to be in an environment like this," he added. "I think Ive said it a million times how great the citys been to me and the people here. The fans thats the easy part, theyre amazing to me all the time."

Thornton also admitted that he's glad he no longer has to worry about where he'll be playing for the near future.

"Im not going to lie to you, its a little weight off the shoulders," said Thornton. "But I think myself and the guys that havent had it done yet, have done a pretty good job focusing throughout the season. It wasnt a distraction, but its definitely a little easier when you know youre going to be somewhere for a few years."

Before Monday's game, general manager Peter Chiarelli praised Thornton's qualities that made him a more important commodity than just an enforcer. And after the game, Bruins coach Claude Julien praised those same values that Thornton brings to the table.

"Everybody knows that Shawn will come to play every night, play hard, and go to his team's defense," said Julien. "He's a good team player. He's in that room, he works hard everyday. He's got a lot of qualities, and I think he's got some good leadership qualities in him, that, when it's time to get ready for a game, he's making sure that he's ready, and he's making sure that people around him are ready.

"He's got a job that's not an easy job. And anybody who's played this sport, who's watched this sport close enough, knows how tough it is to go into the job that he does, every night. Whenever we get pushed around or we're behind and we need a wake-up call, all of a sudden he goes and he takes charge. He's never told to do it. He just does it on his own. He knows his role extremely well. For him to be rewarded with a new contract is worthy of his work.

"I'm glad to see that he's here for a couple more years, at least," added Julien. "And the one thing I like about guys that do that job is that they can also play. That's important, in my book. I've always told Peter Chiarelli that. I don't want a guy that you throw out there and can't play."

With Thornton, that's not the case. And that's why the Bruins locked him up for two more seasons.

Mayock: If I'm Cleveland, I'd be 'stoked' to land Garoppolo for No. 12 pick

Mayock: If I'm Cleveland, I'd be 'stoked' to land Garoppolo for No. 12 pick

NFL Network draft expert Mike Mayock quarterbacked a marathon conference call with reporters from around the country on Monday in order to shed some light on the prospects who will compete at the combine later this week. One thing that stood out? He's not ready to crown anyone in this year's crop of draftable signal-callers.

As a result of the dearth of pro-ready talent at quarterback, Mayock recognized Patriots backup Jimmy Garoppolo as perhaps the top target for any quarterback-needy team. Garoppolo might interest the Cleveland Browns in particular, Mayock noted, because of the number of picks they have near the top of the draft.

"In my opinion," Mayock said, "if I'm the Cleveland Browns and I've got No. 1 and No. 12, if I came away with either [defensive end Myles] Garrett or [defensive tackle] Jonathan Allen at No. 1, and gave up the 12th pick in the draft to get Garoppolo? I would be stoked.

"I would feel like I had a difference-maker on defense and we had a quarterback on offense. Now let's get to work. We got five in the first 65 picks. Let's get to work. From my perspective, especially looking at the quarterbacks this year, if they gave up No. 12 and could get Garoppolo, I'd be all over that."

Haggerty's Morning Skate: NHL teams aren't just making trades for themselves ahead of deadline

Haggerty's Morning Skate: NHL teams aren't just making trades for themselves ahead of deadline

Here are all the hockey links from around the world, and what I’m reading while feeling like Warren Beatty took the sneaky way out by handing that wrong Academy Award card to Faye Dunaway last night. Clearly he knew something was amiss and he let her step into it. Kind of a weasel move if you asked me.

-- An interesting letter from FOH (Friend of Haggs) James Mirtle about the pay wall involving The Athletic sports website in Toronto.

-- Dean Lombardi and the Los Angeles Kings dealing for Ben Bishop is about more than just an insurance policy for Jonathan Quick.

-- FOH Mike Halford has the Minnesota Wild going for it with their trade for Martin Hanzal, but also keeping him from the other teams in the West.

-- NHL commissioner Gary Bettman says the Penguins are in great shape after winning the Cup last spring, and it’s clear they’re in good hands after Mario Lemieux and Ron Burkle opted not to sell the franchise.

-- Kyle Quincey is being held out of the lineup in New Jersey because of pending trades, and the wonder is who else in New Jersey might be getting dealt.

-- Gabriel Landeskog and his Colorado Avalanche teammates know the trade deadline is coming. It would certainly be weird if they didn’t.

-- The San Jose Sharks feel fortunate for the timing of their bye week as it was clear that they needed a break.

-- For something completely different: Gronk was busy doing Gronk things at the Daytona 500 over the weekend.