Bruins Beat Rangers, Secure Eastern Conference One Seed

5 04 2009

By Jim Chandley

The B’s beat the Rangers on Saturday to seal the first spot in the Eastern Conference.  This means the Bruins will have home-ice advantage throughout the playoffs, with the possible exception of a would-be Stanley Cup Final against San Jose.

The only goal came midway through the first on Saturday. Blake Wheeler scored from Axelsson and Wideman at 9:04 in the period.

The Bruins had many quality chances, but they only scored (and only needed) the lone goal.  They won 1-0.

Perhaps the most entertaining part of the game, however, came when Bruins goalie Tim Thomas was tapped on the back of the head by notorious badboy Sean Avery.  A fracas ensued and Avery wound up in the box.  Video can be seen here.

The B’s will skate again on Tuesday in Ottawa.  They could still overtake the Sharks for the best record overall.  But both teams will likely rest key players, so that battle will largely be up to the third and fourth lines from both squads.


Bruins Beat Senators 2-1, Reach 110 Point Mark

2 04 2009

The B's try to best the teams from the old Adams Division this year.

By Jim Chandley

Boston beat lowly Ottawa tonight at the Garden to bring their season point total to 110.  The last time the B’s amassed as many points, they played in the Adams Division (that’s 1982-3 for you kids).

Ottawa’s Daniel Alfredsson scored in the first period to stake the Sens to the early lead.

That was all the Ottawa fans had to cheer about for the entire evening.  Milan Lucic would score early in the second from David Krejci and Michael Ryder.  After going into the lockerroom tied, the B’s came out and got a quick goal from Marc Savard (P.J. Axelsson on the assist).

This was all they would need as the game ended 2-1.

The Bruins’ 110 points are good for a nine point lead on Washington with five games to play.  This means that the Bruins can clinch the Conference title with a win on Saturday afternoon when they host the Rangers.

Bruins Lose to Rangers in Matinee

8 03 2009

Bruins goalie Manny Fernandez in the locker room; a place he may wish he had stayed this afternoon

By Jim Chandley

The Bruins put forth a good team effort in New York this afternoon but came up short, falling 4-3 to the Rangers.  Coach Claude Julien would probably tell you, (as he often does) that they lost as a team.

But this didn’t seem to be as much of a team loss as other recent defeats.  “You can’t win with that,” commentator Mike Millbury said during today’s broadcast.  He spoke almost accidentally and sounded rather harsh but clarified without sugar coating it, “You can not win with goal tending like Manny Fernandez has given the Bruins here today.”

Indeed, Fernandez gave up some soft goals in today’s contest.  When the Rangers drew first blood early in the 2nd, they did so on a legitimate goal by Nik Antropov.  Kobasew scored two minutes later and one could argue that the Rangers should never have seen the lead again.

Later in the period, on the powerplay, Scott Gomez found the back of the net on a wrap-around shot where Fernandez didn’t cover the entire post and let the puck sneak inside his skate.  Minutes later, Fernandez stood up when a shot was blocked in front of him.  He spun 360 degrees in the crease looking for the puck while Ryan Callahan was busy finding it and burying it.

Chara andRyder would both score early in the 3rd, clearing the way for Fernandez to leave his mistakes in the past.  Unfortunately, it was not Fernandez’s day.  With six minutes left in the game, Fernandez lost sight of a rebound andcame out entirely too far to the right slot.  The rebound had in fact gone to the left and Nikolai Zherdev put it away for what would be the game winner.

It was a tough break for the team that Fernandez had such a bad day today.  The skaters came out with some fire, hitting hard and taking part in a few scraps along the way.  They put plenty of pressure on New York’s Henrik Lundquist.  But the miscues in goal were too much to overcome.  The B’s will try again Tuesday at the Columbus Blue Jackets.

5-3 Bruins, Chicken Little Takes a Step Back

7 03 2009

Krejci deflated the Blackhawks' balloon.

By Jim Chandley

The Bruins won for the first time in what felt like ages this afternoon.  They downed the Chicago Blackhawks 5-3 at the Garden.  New Bruin Mark Recchi announced his presence with a two-goal game.

The Bruins never trailed in this one, with Recchi scoring in the first to make it 1-0.  When Jonathan Toews scored in the second to tie things up, Krejci answered only 30 seconds later.  Recchi, Kessel and Axelsson would add tallies for the Bruins the rest of the way.

Things had clearly turned in the second, just after the Toews goal.  Any momentum Chicago had from tying the game was instantly killed by the Krejci marker, with Recchi’s only 40 additional seconds away.  From then on, the Blackhawks were rather lifeless.

Tomorrow, the Bruins will play the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden.  The Rangers are currently 4th in the East.