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Bear Essentials: November 5th

Wednesday, 11.5.2008 / 10:59 AM ET / Bish's Blog
By John Bishop  - BostonBruins.com
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Bear Essentials: November 5th
8:05 p.m.
After practice today, Claude Julien weighed in on the Toronto Maple Leafs.

"I think when you are talking about the Leafs, you are talking about a team that has a lot of confidence,right now," said the Bruins head coach. "Their work ethic is creating situations where they are in every game.

"There's been many times this year when they've been down, early, in the game and have battled themselves back into it.

"They don't quit," he said.

Again, Julien emphasized the importance of a 60-minute effort.

"Tomorrow, we have to understand that we need to be ready for a team that is going to come out hard and compete hard from start to finish," he said. "This is where we have to be willing to push back and at least match, if not surpass, their work ethic and their intensity.

"That's probably the biggest challenge we have for tomorrow.

"It's not so much about systems and everything else, it's just being ready to battle against a team that will come out hard at you," he said.


12:27 p.m.
Mark Stuart was also missing from the skate -- he was feeling a little under the weather. According to Coach Julien, Stuart and Hnidy are day-to-day.


10:55 a.m.

The Bruins are on the ice in Wilmington and the only missing faces that I have noticed, are that of Vladimir Sobotka, who was sent to Providence on Tuesday, and Shane Hnidy, which I will check on.

In any case, as I posted this morning’s video clips of Tim Thomas’ two saves in the NHL’s “Saves of the Week” on the front page, I said to myself, “Well, these things have a way of working themselves out.”

Last year, “these things” was code-speak for Thomas’ not being named to the All-Star ballot, and then being included as an injury replacement.

As you know, Tim participated in the NHL Skills Competition and played in the third period of the NHL's Midwinter Classic and, thanks to a well-timed goal by teammate Marc Savard (an All-Star snub in 2007, by the way), “The Tank” earned the “W” for the Eastern Conference.

This year, well, who knows how “these things” will turn out, but here’s hoping that in addition to the three deserving Bruins chosen to represent Boston on the All-Star Ballot (Patrice Bergeron, Zdeno Chara and Marc Savard are on there this year) at least one more member of the Black & Gold gets consideration for the trip to Montreal.

Post lockout, Thomas has been a constant positive for the Bruins.

Last season, Tim won 28 games, finished fourth in the NHL save percentage (.921) and helped the Bruins make the playoffs for the first time since 2004.

This season, “The Tank” has picked up where he left off and then some.

Thomas posted a 3-1-0 record with a 0.99 goals-against average and .970 save percentage in four games last week and two of his saves are included in the NHL's "Saves of the Week". As of this morning, Thomas is first in save percentage (.944), second in goals against average (1.83) and is tied for second in shutouts with two.

Sure, there’s always ways that Tim could make the team and, knowing Mr. Thomas, the competitive streak that Tim wears as a badge of honor just got bigger.

But here’s hoping that this coming January “these things” work themselves out, yet again, and Tim joins several teammates on the ice in the Bell Center.

More from practice in a bit...JB

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ATLANTIC DIVISION
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
2 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
3 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
4 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
5 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
6 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
7 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
8 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

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2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
P. Bergeron 81 23 32 2 55
L. Eriksson 81 22 25 1 47
M. Lucic 81 18 26 13 44
C. Soderberg 82 13 31 10 44
B. Marchand 77 24 18 5 42
D. Hamilton 72 10 32 -3 42
R. Smith 81 13 27 7 40
T. Krug 78 12 27 13 39
D. Krejci 47 7 24 7 31
C. Kelly 80 7 21 6 28
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
T. Rask 34 21 13 .922 2.30
N. Svedberg 7 5 1 .918 2.33
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