Red Wings vs. Bruins in Halifax, NS
Exhibition game #3 is against the Stanley Cup Champs
Thursday, 09.25.2008 / 8:44 AM ET / Bish's Blog
By John Bishop - BostonBruins.com
From Coach Julien after the game: "We competed pretty hard and we played a pretty good team. They didn't have their whole roster and neither did we, but I thought we had some pretty good chances and they are a team that put a lot of pressure on some of our guys...and it took a while for them to adjust. But again, that is part of learning to play at this level. There are teams that are a lot more aggresive than others and we can certainly make the right adjustments for us to counter (that) better than we did tonight."
Plenty more coverage from the morning skates in Halifax until postgame in Detroit, tomorrow. JB
0:00 - End of Game. Savvy wins the faceoff, Bergy gets a shot off to no avail. Boston falls, 4-3.
1.8 - Face off will be in the Detroit zone. Timmy is off. It's 4-3 and Boston takes the time out.
1:12 - Timmy with a strong save on the edge of the crease (shot from Cleary).
2:30 - Lashoff in the box for holding. Tough timing.
4:22 - Tim with three big stops in succession. Two from the doorstep, one from the point.
7:37 - Detroit scores through traffic. 4-3. Former Bruins Brad Stuart with the goal.
8:32 - While still on the power play, Axelsson picks up a rebound from a shot from the point (Ference). As he gets creamed he puts his shot over the shoulder of the Detroit goalie. 3-3.
9:13 - Shorthanded goal for Detroit. Trying to stop a puck from going into the neutral zone, Ward pinches and the puck gets through and Zetterberg gets a breakaway. He puts it by a sprawling Thomas. 3-2, Detroit.
9:57 - Detroit's Emmerton is in the box.
10:09 - Lots of life in both teams. Some back and forth action as they try and get the win.
13:06 - Shots are 25-25.
14:12 - Wheeler pulls the same trick, comes down the right side around the face off dot and, instead of shooting, goes straight to the net. Nothing comes of it, but nice to see.
15:35 - Detroit's Cleary breaks through the defense and down the left side. Tim gets a piece by the shot is high and wide.
18:01 - Fine defensive play by St. Pierre who stops a breakaway with a nice poke check.
18:29 - More good work from the St. Pierre line. Wheeler digs it ou tof the corner to Martin St. Pierre who makes Larsson make a save.
19:00 - Detroit has been pressing the Bruins and Tim has made two saves already. One in the chest from a shot from the point. And then another off the shaft of his stick.
20:00 - Start of the third. Thomas remains in goal. Story around the press box is the play of Jeremy Reich and Blake Wheeler.
0:00 - A much better period for both teams. Boston looked much smoother and grittier thanks to the St. Pierre and Thompson lines. Shots are 18-17 for Boston.
53.9 - Hard work pays off. St. Pierre scores off good passes from Wheeler and Karsums. 2-2.
2:08 - Reicher is on fire. Another shot. He is really working his tail off.
4:10 - Another nice shift for the Savard line. Starting to click?
6:19 - Reich with a very nice shot through traffic. Saved, but Jeremy has had an oustanding night.
8:17 - Real nice play by the savard line, who went tic-tac-toe, but had Ryder robbed by Larsson.
9:07 - Detroit switches goalies. Daniel Larsson is in goal for the Red Wings. Timmy remains in goal for Boston.
9:08 - The St. Pierre line just had another terrific shift, with all three skaters throwing their bodies around.
11:11 - Back to five-on-five. Not much going on during the PP.
13:17 - Tripping call on Detroit. Franzen in the box.
15:53 - Nice scoring chance by the Savard line. A much more even period, thus far.
17:33 - After a couple of minutes of back and forth play, Thompson and Reich made Osgood work pretty hard for two saves.
19:57 - Detroit wins the faceoff.
20:00 - Start of the second.
0:00 - A pretty uneven period. Tim would probably like both of those back. Luckily, it's only 2-1 and there are 40-minutes to go.
1:31 - Boston is having a lot of trouble getting over the blue line.
3:29 - A breakaway by Phil Kessel forces Osgood to make a tough right to left save.
4:57 - Constant pressure from Detroit. Not good.
7:14 - A tough goal goes through Thomas. It seemed to tick off his glove and over his shoulder. 2-1, Detroit. Lebda with the goal.
8:49 - Jeremy Reich comes off the bench and fires a shot through Osgood. 1-1. Karsums and St. Pierre got the helpers, Wheels deserves credit for keeping it in the zone.
9:23 - Some nice work by Blake Wheeler and Co. has kept the puck in the Detroit end for over a minute. Consistent pressure.
10:43 - We're back at even strength. Nice PK by Boston.
12:02 - Tim's back on track. Nice save through traffic.
13:06 - They put some pressure on the Wings -- a little too much pressure. Penalty Sturm.
13:47 - Boston is a little out of sorts, thus far. The B's need to put some more pressure on Osgood, as he bobbled his latest save.
15:49 - Timmy is beat by Emmerton, unassisted. 1-0, Detroit.
16:13 - Red Wings keep the puck in the B's zone for quite a while.
17:38 - Reich his the side of Osgood's net with a shot. Big clang, but no shot and no goal.
19:00 - Tim has two saves already.
19:58 - Patrice Bergeron wins the faceoff back to Ward.
20:00 - Start of first period. Aaron Ward takes the ceremonial puck drop.
From the stands: "Alright Boston, you are winning it this year." This was after the announcer congratulated the Red Wings for their Stanley Cup win.
Let's switch to game time (on the clock)...
Osgood leads the Red Wings out. Timmy is first out of the locker room for Boston.
|Printable Game Notes
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“We started molding that last year,” said Julien. “And I think our team felt like that last year.”
Julien could only remember one or two instances where he felt that the Bruins did not “show up.”
“That is good sign in 82 games,” he continued. “And we developed that and gave ourselves a chance to win every night.
“The players that are back believe in that, and are spreading that kind of attitude around the dressing room.
“So, I’ve been extremely pleased with our returning players and the way that they have taken the bull by the horns in these exhibition games and being focused on playing well and winning,” he said.
Julien says that those good habits have spread to the younger players as well.
“That’s been key for us and our young kids can’t do anything (besides) follow or they are going to be embarrassed,” he said. “That’s what you call ‘a culture’ and I think it’s going in the right direction.”
Julien also talked about self-evaluation.
“With some players you don’t have to say much,” said Coach. “Some players know and are pretty good at assessing themselves.
“They acknowledge it and are willing to do something to turn it around.”
And, judging by the reaction to Tuesday's loss, the players feel like tonight's as good a night as any to start that process.
For many players, training camp is much more about self-evaluation than anything else, and those players who are honest with themselves about their early progress stand a better chance of entering the regular season ready to compete at the highest level.
“I have a long way to go,” said a very candid Dennis Wideman after this morning’s first practice. “The first game was rough. I had a goal, but I just threw it at the net and it happened to go in.
“Everything else I did was pretty sub par.”
Honesty is a rare commodity in pro sports, and Wideman’s thoughts gave keen insight into his personal psyche, and perhaps shed some more light on why he was re-signed by the Bruins during the off season.
“I have to work on moving the puck quick and seeing the open guy,” he continued. “It’s got to be see him – hit him.
"That’s something that, when you play over the summer in pick up hockey, you hold on to the puck a lot longer than you are supposed to.
“You can develop bad habits and now I have to get rid of them really fast…or the guys up top (the Bruins brass) won’t be too happy,” he said.
Tonight will be a good night to start the redemption and correct the specific mistakes that Wideman saw in his game on Tuesday.
“In the first game I had a couple of giveaways and made bad decisions with the puck,” he said. “I just have to get back to the simple, quick plays that I was making last year.
“Obviously, you are going to be rusty at the start of the season, but you still have to expect a lot out of yourself.
“And some of the plays that I was making, it wasn’t rust, it was just me not mentally being there to the point where you need to be,” he said.
Wideman, like many of his teammates, believes that the Bruins should be in every game.
“If you go through the exhibitions thinking, ‘Oh well, it’s just an exhibition’ then, all of a sudden the season starts, it’s not easy to just flip the and be ready.
“You have to get yourself ready and prepared to play like you are going to play the first game of the regular season.”
The defenseman reiterated that improving on last year was the ultimate goal.
“Obviously, you want to win every game that you are in,” he said. “Whether it’s exhibition, regular season or the playoffs, you are trying to win.
“And I think that we had a pretty good year last year and there’s a winning attitude that you need to have.”
What happens to teams that don't have that attitude?
“I’ve been on a team like that, and it’s not very fun,” he said.
I have the list for tonight: Marco Sturm, Byron Bitz, Johnny Boychuk, Blake Wheeler, P. J. Axelsson, Dennis Wideman, Patrice Bergeron, Jeremy Reich, Phil Kessel, Nate Thompson, Aaron Ward, Michael Ryder, Martin St. Pierre, Martins Karsums, Jeffrey Penner, Matt Lashoff, Tim Thomas, Tuukka Rask, Andrew Ference and Marc Savard.
As you can see, the original A and B groups have disintegrated somewhat, and now we are left to the will and whim of the coaching staff and Bruins brass.
After practice, Ryder, who will play in his second game tonight, seemed excited to get another one under his belt.
"(The first one) was alright, I guess," he said. "But like I have said before, it's going to take two or three games to get into it and get used to the system.
"So it was okay, but we didn't play that well and hopefully tonight we can get some more chemistry together and create a little more offense than we did on Tuesday.
"It's pretty much sticking to basics right now and not get too fancy," said Ryder.
Ryder talked about getting back his rhythm.
"It's definitely going to take (a bit) to get your timing back," said Michael. "Especially because I didn't play a whole lot last year.
"But I think right now I want to try and get my legs going.
"And I definitely like to throw a few hits now and then, but I was a little rusty last game and hopefully tonight goes a little better," he said.
9:12 a.m. (Halifax time)
We’re sitting under the stands waiting for practice to begin, and I'm trying to figure out who is playing tonight.
There is a list going around, but I don’t have it and the guys are running around getting ready, so it's hard to create my own.
But I'll get it really soon, so stay tuned.
Kobasew, Hnidy and Chara
Yesterday, Coach Julien spoke about three of his players and the need for some extra care in their handling. And while he would like to get them some action, he is not going to rush things just to rush things.
“With Chuck, Hnides and Zee, we’re kind of cautious with them,” he said. “They are all coming off injuries and you can rehab as much as you like during the summertime, but they haven’t been at this level of competition much over the summer, so we are trying to get them used to that before we throw them in a game.”
The Bruins have gone through a couple of sets of alternate captains over the last two games, but don’t look for any hidden meaning.
“We’re just picking three guys (per game) – veterans,” said Julien. “Like with (Mark Stuart), he did so well for us last year, it’s just a chance to give some guys some letters, and I wouldn’t read too much into that.
“With eight exhibition games we may spread them around a little bit.”