The Boston Bruins’ recent run of shaky play continued on Saturday as they dropped a 3-1 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers. Head coach Claude Julien explained the team’s biggest issues to CSNNE.com following the defeat:
“It’s a different line in another game, and then the other three [aren’t going]. We can’t win hockey games relying on one line per night producing for us,” Julien said. ” … We need to relax a little. But we also need to wake up and play Bruins hockey. Because that’s not what we’re playing right now.”
Many Bruins fans probably wonder what could have been as Jarome Iginla made his Pittsburgh Penguins debut today.
Julien seemed to indirectly address the lack of trades while reflecting on Boston’s woes.
“If we’re looking for help, we’re looking in the wrong direction,” Julien said. “We really need to start looking at ourselves because as a team right now we’re not playing well. We’re very average in all areas and we’re not playing Bruins hockey. We can out-shoot teams all night long, but it doesn’t mean much.”
Tough guy Shawn Thornton believes it’s not for a lack of trying.
“I don’t think it’s a lack of effort right now. I think it’s just a lack of execution,” Thornton said. “For whatever reason, we were squeezing our sticks in the first two periods. We’re just not making plays that we’re capable of making. I honestly think the effort was there.
“I don’t know if we’re trying a little bit too hard and we’re just bobbling things right now. We just need to get back to having fun and making plays. We’re a good team.”
Well, the NHL’s two new initiatives for ’15-16 seem to be going swimmingly.
Not long after Ottawa successfully made the second-ever coach’s challenge, fans got their first look at 3-on-3 overtime.
And what a look it was.
In the span of 137 seconds, the Tampa Bay Lightning and Philadelphia Flyers combined for eight shots on goal, a few breakaways, some tremendous saves — including one on a penalty shot — and, finally, Jason Garrison‘s game-winning goal on a breakaway from center, giving the Bolts a 3-2 win.
It was, in a word, fun.
Lots of fun.
A quick sampling of reviews:
Of course, not everybody was a fan:
Now, to temper things a bit — this was the first time we’ve seen 3-on-3 with something on the line, so there was a novelty factor at play. There’s also no guaranteeing future OT sessions will be as exciting as this.
But none of that takes away from the fact 3-on-3 made for appointment viewing, and immense entertainment value. The prospect of future games like this? That’s pretty exciting.
Didn’t take long for Alex Burmistrov to make his presence felt — though not in a good way.
Burmistrov, playing in his first game for the Jets after a two-year stint in Russia, delivered a questionable elbow to the head of Boston’s Patrice Bergeron late in the first period of Thursday’s season-opener:
Burmistrov received a two-minute minor for an illegal check to the head, while Bergeron received a matching minor for roughing (retaliating for the elbow, specifically).
The Bruins went into the intermission leading 1-0, and have yet to update Bergeron’s status.
Update: Bergeron stayed in the game, but B’s head coach Claude Julien was none too pleased with the hit. Following the game, he called for the NHL’s Department of Player Safety to look at it…