Boston Bruins

Eberle rumors swirl as Bruins’ offense struggles


The Boston Bruins, when they’ve been at their best in recent seasons, have been one of the top defensive teams in the NHL.

Everyone knows that. (Lest we forget Claude Julien’s beloved “layers,” and how those layers helped the B’s stifle the high-scoring Pittsburgh Penguins in the 2013 playoffs and the high-scoring Vancouver Canucks in the 2011 Stanley Cup Final.)

What occasionally gets forgotten, however, is that the Bruins have been a pretty high-scoring team themselves. In that 2010-11 championship year, Boston finished the regular season with the NHL’s fifth-ranked offense. The B’s finished third in the league last season, averaging 3.15 goals per game.

Hence, the growing concern about the state of the current team, which ranks 22nd in offense, averaging just 2.41 goals per game.

While injuries to David Krejci and Zdeno Chara are surely to blame for some of the Bruins’ scoring woes, that’s not stopping the rumor mill from churning. The latest speculation involves a possible deal with the Edmonton Oilers for winger Jordan Eberle.

According to CSN New England’s Joe Haggerty, it’s believed that Eberle has “always been the desired top line target for the Black and Gold,” even if it didn’t sound today like the Oilers were on the verge of making a big trade.

Why Eberle?

Well, the salary cap-limited Bruins did not, if you’ll recall, bring in a replacement for departed winger Jarome Iginla this offseason, opting instead to hope Loui Eriksson could be “better than he was last year.”

And how’s Eriksson done?

Well, he has just three goals in 27 games, so…yeah.

Consider also: Boston’s leading goal-scorers are Brad Marchand and Reilly Smith, each with six. Currently, there are 92 players in the NHL with more than six goals.

The Bruins lost their third straight last night, falling 7-4 to the San Jose Sharks in a game where, let’s be honest, the offense was the least of their problems. But before that they were shut out by the Kings, 2-0, marking the third time this season that they’d been blanked.

Boston is in Arizona Saturday to play the Coyotes.

Related: (Video) PHT Extra: Why Bruins fans should be worried

Video: Rask talks about getting cut for six stitches


Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask had the night off Tuesday in L.A., but that didn’t stop him from getting involved in the action.

Rask took an errant puck to the head early in the first period and was cut for six stitches.

On Wednesday, Rask admitted he was bragging about the stitches.

Boston continues its’ four-game road trip Thursday night in San Jose.

Video: Rask takes a puck to the head on Bruins bench


Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask isn’t playing tonight, but still managed to get injured while watching.

Early in the first period, a Jeff Carter dump-in attempt deflected off a stick and wound up striking Rask in the head.

Rask eventually left for repairs, but is back on the Bruins bench now.

Boston opens four-game road trip with a loss in Anaheim


The Boston Bruins began their four-game western road trip with a 3-2 to loss in Anaheim Monday night.

Brad Marchand opened the scoring with his sixth of the season; however, the Ducks responded with three straight to snap a two-game skid.

Sami Vatanen and Devante Smith-Pelly gave Anaheim a 2-1 lead after 40 minutes.

The Bruins were not happy that Smith-Pelly got away with holding Matt Bartkowski’s stick just prior to his goal.

“You’ve got to battle through those things. This isn’t peewee hockey,” said Claude Julien per’s Joe Haggerty.

Added Bartkowski, “I’ve still got to find a way to get him out of there. He’s a big body and I should have just moved him in the first place.”

Matt Beleskey scored the eventual game winner at 4:43 of the third.

Beleskey spent the night playing alongside Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry.

When Ducks’ coach Bruce Boudreau was asked post-game whether Beleskey had found a new home on the top line, Boudreau wasn’t quite sure about that.

“On our team? There’s never a home,” Boudreau told “There’s a couple of tents [that] are up, but I don’t know if it’s a home.

“Now he’s feeling that he can score. In the past, he didn’t shoot the puck much. He didn’t get as much ice time as he’s getting. He’s more in a role of banging and energy, and now he’s asked to do the banging and energy, plus shooting the puck and being a big shooter on that line, and it’s paying off.”

Simon Gagne got Boston to within one midway through the final period, but the Bruins were unable to find the equalizer.

With the loss, the Bruins have just one win in their past four.

Boston continues their trip Tuesday against the L.A. Kings.

Bruins’ Chara (knee) making progress


Bruins captain Zdeno Chara remains in Boston as his teammates head out on a four-game western road trip, which begins Monday in Anaheim.

The hope is once the team gets back, Chara will be close to returning to the lineup.

“You know, we’re gone for eight days now, so I can’t predict what’s going to happen after eight days. You’d like to hope [he’s close to returning], but I don’t know,” coach Claude Julien told the team’s website.

Chara has been out since Oct. 23 with a tear in the posterior cruciate ligament in his left knee.

The 37-year-old has already missed 14 games, but has been skating regularly with strength and conditioning coach John Whitesides.

“[The trainers are] going at the stage here where they didn’t think it was an advantage to bring him with us on the trip and he’d be better served staying behind and rehabbing and skating here on his own with (David Krejci),” said Julien.

Chara had two goals and three points while averaging 21:41 in ice time in nine games prior to the injury.