Claude Julien meant it as a compliment, though we can hear the snickering already.
Today, ahead of Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final, here’s what the Bruins’ head coach had to say about his team’s opponent, the Chicago Blackhawks:
“When you look at their back end, they have a lot of Kris Letangs, let’s put it that way, that can carry the puck up the ice and attack.”
Never mind that Letang, like the rest of the Pittsburgh Penguins stars, would probably like to forget their performance against the Bruins in the Eastern Conference Final.
Letang, at his best, is a smooth-skating defensman with an offensive flair, and the same can be said about Chicago’s Duncan Keith, who has 11 points in 16 games for the ‘Hawks this postseason.
Johnny Oduya, Niklas Hjalmarsson, and Nick Leddy are three other mobile Chicago blue-liners that can make it tough for a team to establish a forecheck.
As always when facing a mobile defense, the key for the Bruins will be to get possession, with speed, through the neutral zone, and if they can’t carry the puck in, at least dump it into the right spots and get after it.
It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.
To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:
The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)
That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:
They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.
Cheap shot on a superstar, a little uncalled goalie interference and presto – Blue Jackets win!
The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.
You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.
That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:
Coach Bylsma: Feel like after Jack's goal, the game changed for us. #gamechanger