BOSTON, MA - The Bruins are one of the most dominant teams at home in the NHL. The Ottawa Senators are a desperate team, fighting for a playoff spot.
Those two sides collided at TD Garden on Friday night, with the Bruins overpowering the Sens with a 5-0 shutout that included four third-period goals.
In the past three games, Boston has put up 15 goals, with 10 of those coming in the third period.
Against Ottawa, the game went scoreless through 20 minutes before Jarome Iginla found the back of the net on the power play late in the second period to give Boston the 1-0 lead.
The Bruins outshout the Senators 20-8 in that middle frame.
"The first was a little sluggish for us. We knew that they would be hungry and coming off a real strong win right before Christmas. We knew that they’d be ready," said Iginla, of an Ottawa team that had delivered their own 5-0 shutout to Pittsburgh before the league's three-day break. "Tuuks [Tuukka Rask] was able to keep us in again and as the second went on, we got better and better."
BOSTON, MA - The Bruins recalled goaltender Niklas Svedberg from the Providence Bruins on Friday morning, before the team hosted the Ottawa Senators at TD Garden.
It marks Svedberg's first NHL regular season recall. He's in his second full season with the organization after being signed as a free agent in May of 2012.
When Svedberg drove from Providence to Boston on Friday and joined the Bruins for their pregame skate, he was fresh off his first shutout of the 2013-14 season, a 4-0 win over the Worcester Sharks on Thursday night.
Svedberg found out about the recall right after the game. The win wasn't a bad confidence-booster heading into his first time with the big club.
"We’re going to have a look at him in the next little while here," Bruins Head Coach Claude Julien told media following pregame skate. "Not tonight, but maybe tomorrow or the game after. I think he’s earned that. We told him that after having such a good camp, that we’d bring him up at some point and give him some games so that’s what we’re doing right now."
BOSTON, MA - The Bruins return to action tonight against Ottawa at TD Garden, after the three-day NHL break to enjoy some much needed and well-deserved rest around the holidays.
One welcome addition to the lineup will be Daniel Paille, getting back into action against the Senators after missing seven games while recovering from a mild concussion.
Paille's return marks another positive step for the Bruins' forward corps, which is still without Loui Eriksson (concussion), Chris Kelly (broken right fibula) and Shawn Thornton for an extended period of time.
Still, amidst a month of December with injuries, illness and adversity, the Bruins went 7-3-0 in their 10 games prior to tonight's matchup.
"That three day break I think was a welcome break for every team in the league," said Bruins Head Coach Claude Julien following the team's pregame skate Friday morning.
NASHVILLE, TN - When the puck dropped in Music City, the focus was simple for the Bruins: win in Nashville, and enjoy a much-deserved three-day holiday break around Christmas.
Boston ended up erupting for a 6-2 win over the Predators, to give them seven wins in their past nine games, and improve to 25-10-2 on the season.
"Yeah, it’s always more fun when you’re winning, you know?" Tuukka Rask said from the Bruins' locker room following the win.
The cool, casual netminder has only allowed three goals in his past two starts, and made 32 saves in this one.
"But I was pretty happy the way we finished off these last four games, played some good hockey and got a good road win here to finish it off, so it’s a good break for us now."
"It makes Christmas a lot nicer, obviously," Head Coach Claude Julien had smiled prior to the matchup. "But we have a job to do and we have to go out there and do it."
His team followed suit.
WILMINGTON, MA - When the Bruins hit the ice on Sunday morning at Ristuccia Arena before heading to Nashville, Brad Marchand was not present.
"He’s making the trip," Head Coach Claude Julien confirmed. "He’s just banged up, so a maintenance day today, obviously for the reasons you saw last night."
Julien was quick to stay there's no need to make an emergency callup; Marchand just needed the maintenance day.
Before the midpoint of the first period in the Bruins' eventual 4-1 over Buffalo on Saturday night, Marchand was caught in a collision along the boards with Christian Ehrhoff. He was helped down the tunnel by the training staff, before returning not too long after, and taking his place on the penalty kill.
He finished out the rest of the game just fine, and provided a huge shot block early in the second period. It hobbled him a bit, but he got up, continued played, and easily got a roar of appreciation from the crowd for sacrificing his body.
Hockey's obviously a tough sport, and you'll find players willing to put themselves in those situations on every team, but "playing tough" is also predominantly the Boston Bruins' way.
WILMINGTON, MA - Daniel Paille joined the Bruins for practice on Sunday morning at Ristuccia Arena for the first time since being sidelined by what he deemed as a "very mild, very light" concussion.
Paille has missed straight six games, dating back to December 10 in Calgary, after first feeling symptoms while on the road with the Bruins in Canada.
He skated for two days on his own before returning to practice, and has been symptom-free for about six days, since the Bruins hosted the Calgary Flames on December 17.
Though he wasn't making the trip to Nashville with the team before the Christmas break, it was still a great sign in his progress.
BOSTON, MA - It's only a few hours, once a year, but wow, do those hours make an impact.
We're amidst the holiday season, traditionally a time for family and friends, and plenty of goodwill - and gifts - to go around. "Home for the Holidays," we often say.
If you're in the hospital during this time, not surrounded by the comforts of home, it's not easy, even if family is close-by.
That's where Ray Bourque stepped in years ago, when he was Captain of the Bruins, beginning a new tradition for the Black & Gold, to annually go shopping for toys and donate them to Boston hospitals every holiday season.
Bruins Alternate Captain Patrice Bergeron now spearheads the efforts, which saw the Bruins purchase over $20,000 worth of toy donations that were delivered by the team. More than 600 children who are unable to celebrate the holidays at home will now get to enjoy the toys.
On December 20, the Holiday Toy Delivery, presented by Wynn Resorts, saw the Bruins split up into groups and visit children at Boston Children's Hospital, Floating Hospital for Children at Tufts Medical Center, Franciscan Hospital for Children, MassGeneral Hospital for Children, Shriners Hospital for Children and Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital.
BUFFALO, NY - Brad Marchand scored two goals just 1:14 apart to put the Bruins up in Buffalo, but they were the only two chances the Black & Gold could put past Ryan Miller, falling 4-2 at First Niagara Center on Thursday night.
The good news? The Bruins are still 23-10-2 on the season, with another crack at Buffalo on Saturday night to finish off the home-and-home at TD Garden.
The not so good news? The loss came with the Bruins dominating most of the offensive zone time in the game, especially in the second period, before outshooting the Sabres 15-5 in the third.
Ryan Miller made 34 saves on 36 shots. After Marchand's second tally 3:04 into the second period, Miller stoned the Bruins.
"We probably deserved a better fate than what happened," Bruins Head Coach Claude Julien said postgame. "I thought we controlled the game pretty good, but the goaltender at that end made some pretty big saves to keep them in the game, especially in that second period, we had lots of chances."
"Unfortunately you have a 2-1 lead, somehow you want to try and extend that lead a little bit more instead of keeping it that tight. So we gave them an opportunity to come back in the third, and they did."
BUFFALO, NY – When General Manager Peter Chiarelli spoke with media on Thursday morning at First Niagara Center before the Bruins faced the Sabres, he addressed some recent talk surrounding Brad Marchand and the production of his line.
"For a line, I mean, if all three guys are clicking, then they’d all be producing. And when one guy isn’t, it hurts the other two," said Chiarelli, before adding, "Let me be clear on Marchy. I saw some of the kind of aftermath yesterday from my comments. I’m not trading Marchy. He’s a good player, I like the way he plays, so he’ll figure it out."
"But when one guy struggles, the other guys unfortunately piggyback on those struggles. So you need three guys really going out – you hear what guys saying about pairs; play lines and pairs – you need three guys going and contributing. So that’s happening a little bit but as I said yesterday [Wednesday] he’s finding his way."
BUFFALO, NY – When David Warsofsky hits the First Niagara Center ice in the Spoked-B on Thursday night, he'll be making his much anticipated NHL debut.
Naturally, and not surprisingly, the defenseman is both nervous and excited.
"Obviously, it’s my first NHL game and I’m excited about that opportunity," Warsofsky said following the team's pregame skate before facing the Sabres. "I’m a little nervous at the same time, but I think nerves are a good thing and hopefully it helps come game time."
The 23-year-old is in his fourth year with the organization, after getting his first taste at the end of the 2010-11 season with Providence, following a three-year collegiate career with Boston University. It was right before Boston made their run to the Cup.
So, when Assistant General Manager Don Sweeney pulled him aside during the P-Bruins practice on Wednesday, the thrill came rushing in.