Colorado Avalanche coach Patrick Roy hasn’t shied away from controversy so far, but he has gotten results.
Backup goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere earned a 39-save shutout and Ryan O’Reilly netted a power-play goal en route to Colorado’s 2-0 victory over the Boston Bruins.
The Avalanche have gotten off to a 4-0-0 start and improved to 7-0-1 in their last eight contests in the Bruins’ TD Garden, notes the Avalanche. This is also their best start since the franchise relocated to Colorado.
Roy made headlines in his season opener for getting into an altercation with Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau and then referring to the bench boss as “classless” for spreading what Roy says are lies. However, Roy had nothing but praise for Bruins coach Claude Julien before this match.
“I have so much respect for him and he’s a great coach,” Roy told NHL.com. “When you’re in the finals of the Stanley Cup two years … you deserve a lot of credit and respect. Every time I spoke to him, at the time I asked him a few questions, he was always available.”
Julien won’t have an opportunity to get a rematch against Roy until March 21. The question is; will the Avalanche’s early winning streak be seen as an anomaly at that point or the start of a surprisingly successful campaign?
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…