There isn’t a more explosive team in the NHL right now than the Boston Bruins. After starting the season 3-7-0, the B’s have won eight in a row and find themselves right back in a playoff position.
Not only are the Stanley Cup champs winning, they’re blowing teams out of the rink. Boston has outscored its opponents by a 41-14 margin in the last eight games.
That’s an average score of 5.1 to 1.8.
“We were sick of losing so we did something about it,” said defenseman Dennis Seidenberg.
“We’re willing to do the things that you have to do to win hockey games and I didn’t feel that we were ready to do that in the first month of the season,” echoed coach Claude Julien.
That the B’s are hungry for wins in November after hoisting the Cup in June is commendable. The Blackhawks had an eight-game winning streak last season, but their post-championship malaise didn’t end until late February.
To be fair, Chicago had to adjust to a depleted roster; the Bruins are largely the same team, plus Tyler Seguin’s emerged as one of the league’s top scorers.
However, ‘Hawks Duncan Keith admitted he suffered from a lack of motivation once the summer of celebration was over.
“I’m not making any excuses but I didn’t feel excited coming back at the start the season,” Keith said during the first round of the playoffs.
“Once you get off to a bad start and you’re not happy with it, it’s tough to get out of. It can snowball in some ways. You think you’re getting out of it then it comes back and becomes a mental thing. It makes you appreciate having a good start.”
The Bruins are in Montreal tonight looking to make it nine in a row.
In hockey terms, Patrick Kane was like a star basketball player left alone for an almost strange amount of time to score. Sometimes you miss that opportunity out of the sheer shock of getting that much time and space.
Devan Dubnyk wasn’t so lucky, however, as Kane beat him to score a 1-1 goal.
You can watch the whole sequence in the video above, including an absolutely fantastic play by Duncan Keith.
With that tally, Kane’s scoring streak is now at 20 games, leaving him one game behind Bobby Hull’s Chicago Blackhawks record.
PHT discusses Kane’s streak and his place among the all-time great runs in the clip below.
Sometimes, the Nashville Predators were unlucky in November. Sometimes they were just bad.
Either way, they’re likely glad to step into December, and they’ve already gotten a big bounce. Watch how close this near-goal was into crossing the red line before Pekka Rinne barely stopped it with a well-placed goalie stick.
You can also see it up close via this GIF:
Here’s the NHL Situation Room Blog explanation for it remaining a no-goal:
At 13:06 of the first period in the Coyotes/Predators game, the Situation Room initiated a video review to further examine a play from 11:57. Video review confirmed the call on the ice that the puck did not cross the Nashville goal line. No goal Coyotes.
Alexei Emelin has been in and out of the Montreal Canadiens lineup, but this wasn’t the way they wanted him to keep his legs fresh.
The hard-hitting defenseman received a game misconduct and five-minute major penalty for a late hit on Columbus Blue Jackets forward Matt Calvert on Tuesday.
So far, it sounds like Calvert may be OK.
You can see video of that hit above, as well as a GIF of the infraction via My Regular Face.
Many believe that Emelin should not have been ejected.
Injuries have been a regular problem for Joffrey Lupul for much of his time with the Toronto Maple Leafs, and it doesn’t look like that’s changing in 2015-16.
The team placed him on injured reserve retroactive to Nov. 28, calling up Rich Clune in the process.
This IR stint means that Lupul will miss at least three games for Toronto.
From the sound of things, it’s a nagging issue, as NHL.com notes.
“He’s been having the same problem here for a bit,” Mike Babcock told media members on Sunday. “He doesn’t seem to be getting the power back that they thought, so we’re just trying to monitor it the best we can.”
Leafs Nation points out that Lupul has missed about one-third of Toronto’s contests since suffering a separated shoulder in April 2012.
At 32, there’s still time for Lupul to fight through this, although injuries generally accumulate with age.