Columnist: Bruins can’t match Penguins, Habs


After seeing the Boston Bruins fall short – for the most part -against the Eastern Conference’s top two seeds in the Pittsburgh Penguins and Montreal Canadiens,’s Joe Haggerty believes that they’re not “up to snuff.”

Haggerty explains why Boston has a 1-4-1 record in six games against the potent pairing.

That’s how it’s gone for the Bruins this year against both Montreal and Pittsburgh. They’re close to both in terms of competitive ability, but they’re also clearly not as good in a year where they haven’t proven they can beat elite teams.

Sure, each of the five losses to the Habs and Pens (four regulation, one shootout) was by one goal, and those can flip back and fourth depending on the bounce of the puck. But the Black and Gold simply aren’t up to snuff right now against the conference’s best, and there’s work to be done if they hope to beat either one in the Stanley Cup playoffs.

Specifically, Haggerty thinks the team needs to be more attentive on defense, work on line combinations without Patrice Bergeron (more on Jaromir Jagr being juggled around here) and still hope to reach that elusive goal of improving their power play.

Still, many probably poked holes in the Bruins team that won it all in 2011, so you never know.

Video: Wild score four in 5:07 for shock win in Colorado

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Everything was going great for the Avs in their season-opener against Minnesota on Thursday night.

Great until the third period, anyway.

In a stunning and dramatic comeback, the Wild erased a 4-1 deficit in just over five minutes — 5:07 to be exact — scoring four times to steal a 5-4 win at the Pepsi Center.

The comeback started early in the final frame, when Wild captain Zach Parise scored his second of the night at the 5:07 mark. Just over two minutes later, Nino Niederreiter snapped one past Semyon Varlamov to make it 4-3 and then, two minutes after that, Thomas Vanek scored to make it 4-4.

But the Wild weren’t done there.

Parise completed his hat-trick — the third of his career — with a power play marker at the 10:14 mark, an unassisted tally. When the dust finally settled on the 5:07 flurry, the Wild had combined to rack up nine points from eight different skaters.

Prior to the comeback, Colorado dominated proceedings with a goalscoring flurry of its own.

The Avs scored three times in the final seven minutes of the first period — including a pair of power play goals from Jarome Iginla and Erik Johnson — to race out to a (seemingly) commanding 3-0 lead.

Video: Flyers, Bolts confirm 3-on-3 OT is pretty much the greatest thing ever


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.