Jaromir Jagr

Jaromir Jagr hopes to use Isles as comeback punching bag too

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As if it wasn’t bad enough for the New York Islanders on Monday night dealing with the Sidney Crosby circus, tonight they’ll get to try and handle Jaromir Jagr returning from a groin injury.

Jagr tells CSNPhilly.com’s Tim Panaccio that he’ll be suiting up for tonight’s game on Long Island after missing the last two games with a slight groin injury. Jagr’s return to action against the Islanders does make for a cushy return to action given how poorly the Isles have played of late.

After getting blown out by the Bruins and Penguins in two straight games, the Isles come into tonight’s game hoping to turn things around and potentially save Jack Capuano’s job. The Isles will have to show some sort of heart tonight and they’ll have to do it while looking awfully ugly as well. At least they won’t have Chris Pronger to deal with as he won’t be playing thanks to a virus.

If Jagr turns on the wheels tonight and pulls out some of his own legendary skills, it could prove to be the straw that breaks the back of the Islanders. If you’re going to go down, going down at the hands of a future Hall Of Famer at least gives you something to hang your hat on. That might be a really glass half-full way of seeing things though.

After lopsided loss, Julien says it’s ‘not about the young D’

Claude Julien
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The Boston Bruins’ young, makeshift defense failed to come through Thursday night as the B’s were thumped, 6-2, on home ice by the Winnipeg Jets.

Without injured veterans Zdeno Chara and Dennis Seidenberg, the defensive pairings were as follows:

Torey KrugAdam McQuaid
Joe MorrowKevan Miller
Matt IrwinZach Trotman

And let’s just say, turnovers were a factor:

That was Irwin getting checked off the puck there.

“I had the puck behind the net, and I went to one side of the net, and then I just didn’t use the net to my advantage,” he explained afterwards, per CSN New England. “He got his stick in there, obviously stripped me of the puck, and we all know what happened after that. I take full blame for that one.”

But head coach Claude Julien wasn’t willing to blame inexperience for the poor outing.

“It’s not about youth. It’s not about the young D,” said Julien. “It’s about our game without the puck. I think we might have gotten a little excited here about our offense and forgot about the other part of our game.”

And to be fair, even Boston’s more accomplished d-men had their challenging moments.

Here’s Krug failing to get position on Nicolas Petan in front of the Bruins’ net:

All in all, it was a tough night.

“We’ll correct those [mistakes] tomorrow in practice,” said Irwin. “We’re a confident group in here. We liked our offense. We liked the chances we were getting. All those mistakes, D-zone, are something that we’re going to work on and get better every day.”

The Bruins host their rivals from Montreal on Saturday.

Greene named 11th captain in Devils history

Dion Phaneuf; Andy Greene
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Andy Greene has been named Bryce Salvador’s successor as New Jersey’s team captain.

Greene, an undrafted free agent that’s spent his entire nine-year career with the Devils organization, becomes the 11th captain in the franchise’s history and third American to wear the “C” (Zach Parise and Jamie Langenbrunner were the others).

A former standout at Miami of Ohio, Greene — who served as an alternate captain in each of the last two seasons — has developed into a steady, durable blueliner that hasn’t missed a game in three years. He’s also locked into the Devils long term, having signed a five-year, $25 million extension with the club last summer.

That deal kicks in this season, and runs through 2020.

As for the rest of the leadership group, four players will serve as alternate captains this season: Patrik Elias, Travis Zajac, Mike Cammalleri, and Adam Henrique.

Elias and Zajac both wore an “A” in New Jersey last year, while Cammalleri and Henrique are first-timers.