Game Day: Bruins @ Maple Leafs
Game #2 of the road trip, Game #3 against TML
Saturday, 12.19.2009 / 12:37 PM ET / Bish's Blog
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What we know...
Derek Morris is out with an undisclosed injury. He is day-to-day and has not been ruled out of Monday's game.
So, that means former Lear Andy Wozniewski and fellow P-Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid will play. Thus, McQuaid will make his NHL debut tonight against the Maple Leafs.
Jonas Gustavsson will play in goal for TML tonight. No word as of yet on the Bruins goalie.
Speaking of defensemen, what a pleasure it was to talk to THE defenseman, Bobby Orr, on Friday!
I was lucky enough to interview him for bostonbruinsTV.com and I asked him about the "First Skate at Fenway" and all the subsequent events happening around the Winter Classic.
"This is how [we played] growing up, outdoors," said #4. "That’s really where I learned to play and many of these players learned to play.
"We played more outside than we did inside and I know both teams are very excited about the game New Year’s Day and I’m excited and the guys are very excited about going down today.
"I spoke to people last night at Fenway. They say the rink looks wonderful so it’s going to be an exciting time."
It certainly was exciting, not only for Mr. Orr and the people who got to see him skate, but for everyone involved. The weather was cold, but beautiful. The Bruins alumni were so excited to see and skate on the ice.
It literally was a field of dreams -- and they haven't even played the game yet.
Boston Bruins legend, Milt Schmidt, who is now 91 years old, was just one of the people who were able to witness history as the B's alumni "broke the ice" at Fenway, but he might have been the most grateful spectator in America's most beloved ballpark.
|The Kraut Line.
"But it will bring back a lot of old memories. Memories that I’ll take to my grave. I’ve been a very, very fortunate man."
Schmidt is the only man to have served in the capacity of captain, coach and general manager of the Bruins.
"I was fortunate in all those capacities, but I wish I were still playing, to be very honest with you," he said. "That was the best part of my whole career.
"And needless to say with great people that I played with. So you got a lot of memories over the years and I’m very pleased about the situation, plus the fact I’m pleased with the way that the city of Boston accepted me."
Mr. Schmidt almost had me choked up and my cameraman Jonny Gotlib choked up when he spoke about just HOW grateful he is to have had such a fine life and career with the Boston Bruins.
"I think of Lou Gehrig once and a while, that great speech that he made, he was on death’s bed when he said that he was one of the luckiest people in the world," said Mr. Schmidt at the end of our interview. "Move over, Lou. I consider myself to be one of the luckiest as well."
On Wednesday, before the Bruins left for Chicago (where Andy Wozniewski played), McQuaid said that his journey to the NHL had been pretty exciting.
"I just found out [Tuesday] night at five o’clock, so didn’t have a whole lot of time, but I called all my family and friends and gave them the news," he said. "They were pretty excited.
"I got packed up and got in around nine o’clock."
McQuaid was on a plane with the Bruins later that day.
As he was preparing to depart for the trip, he told the gathered media that he wasn't too worried about behing able to adapt to the Bruins systems.
"Yeah they are fairly similar [to those in Providence]," he said. "There are obviously some differences, but I was lucky enough to get to play some games in the exhibition schedule so I’m familiar with the system from that experience.
"I'll have to go over a little bit of video and kind of get my mind refreshed on what needs to be done, but for the most part I have a pretty good idea."
It's pretty safe to say that McQuaid is a stay-at-home, physical defenseman. And Adam has no problem admitting that.
"It’s kind of my game," he said. "I play a pretty simple game -- just going to try and be solid and reliable out there, not try and do too much."
And if he gets the call?
"[I'll] just try and fight the nerves and play with some confidence out there and take it all in," he said.
I couldn't stand sitting around any more, so I am in the empty media gondola here at the ACC.
It's only three hours until gametime!
All of yesterday's postgame vids are ready for perusal. Click here to watch and listen to Daniel Paille, Coach Julien, Patrice Bergeron, Tim Thomas, Shawn Thornton and Mark Recchi.
Two Points for Honesty
Coach Julien gave the B's the morning off and will meet with the media later this afternoon. And that's just fine for me, because up here on Ice Station T.O., the weather is, shall we say, COLD!
Nothing like going over notes and transcripts and vids and pictures from the comfort of a 71-degree hotel room.
I did venture out to buy some Christmas gifts and found lots of True Believers out and about near the Hockey Hall of Fame. Looks like there should be plenty of Black & Gold in the stands of the Air Canada Centre this evening.
And thanks to everyone who introduced themselves. You made a particularly lonely, gloomy Saturday morning away from The General pretty darn tolerable.
I hear that you guys in New England are in for some rough weather of the shoveling variety -- stay safe and just hang with us here at BostonBruins.com and bostonbruinsTV.com. We'll keep you entertained until gametime.
Hey, someone please remember to salt the runway and keep the porch light on for Bear Force One's landing in the wee hours of Monday night.
In the meantime, I am going to mitigate some of my latent homesickness with some locally produced pop music.
Guster anyone? They're local guys. Probably Bruins fans, too.
Long story short, I saw those guys while I was in college. Long before they were lost in Amsterdam, they were performing in Harvard Square as "Gus."
Nice guys, fun times and good tunes. I was downright shocked when I saw them performing at Woodstock on TV several years later.
"Waaaaaaaaaaitasecond -- I met those guys on the side of the road near the Red Line."
I wish I hadn't lost the tape I bought off of them.