Claude Julien (bruins.NHL.com)

The Bruins officially announced Sunday morning that they have signed head coach Claude Julien to a multi-year extension, marking the continuation of a very successful era for the Bruins franchise. Julien is 317-171-65 as he head coach of the Bruins and has established himself as one of the best coaches in the league.

We have worked at this for a few months, but there was never any doubt in my mind that this would get done,” said Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli. “Claude is one of the top coaches in the NHL and has consistently shown a passion for winning through his coaching.”

This is a an obvious move for the team, but it bodes very well for the future of the Bruins going forward. Julien has been a consistently strong coach and has led his team to over 100 points in 4 of the past 6 seasons. We’ve seen him make some brilliant coaching decisions both in the regular season and the playoffs. And of course, during the Stanley Cup run of 2011 he led his underdog team to glory. Continue reading Bruins Sign Coach Claude Julien to Multi-year Extension »

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Dave Warsofsky (Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

The Bruins lost to the Minnesota Wild 4-3 on Tuesday night after they let a 3-1 lead slip through their fingers in the third period. They got goals from Milan Lucic and two from rookie Seth Griffith, but it wasn’t enough to stop an implosive collapse against a dogger Minnesota offense. It was a frustrating loss for the Black and Gold and really epitomized what could go wrong for them without captain Zdeno Chara in the lineup.

According to Weymouth, MA native and Wild forward Charlie Coyle, their game plan was to wear down the Bruins defense. And it worked. They dumped the puck in deep, forcing the Bruins defensemen to skate back and get it, take a hit, and make a decision. It’s exactly the strategy that teams need to execute against the curet B’s roster and other teams around the league are sure to take notice.

The loss was more than just a dip in the standings, however. The Bruins defense, already dwindling, just got a lot thinner. Torey Krug got slashed in the hand on his last shift of the game and will now miss 2-3 weeks while his finger heals. This is very bad news for the Bruins.

Continue reading Krug to Miss 2-3 Weeks, Bruins Defense in Shambles »

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Right Wing Option for Bruins Top Line

October 29, 2014 at 1:56pm in Bruins, NHL
http://oilers.nhl.com/club/page.htm?id=89251

Although Seth Griffith has done a decent job playing on the right side of David Krejci and Milan Lucic with an impressive game Tuesday night against Minnesota, it still feels that an upgrade at the positon is necessary if the Bruins wish to regain the production lost from 30-plus goal scorer Jarome Iginla last season. Their offence to this point has been adequate, but it is clear that the Bruins are lacking the type of consistent player that should be flourishing on the top line of one of the league’s best teams.

The trade deadline is still a while away, but it is necessary to start questioning what moves will be made in the Bruins organization to address the need of a right winger to play with Krejci and Lucic. They have other options in house like high-ceiling prospect David Pastrnak, Loui Eriksson, rusty veteran Simon Gagne, and they can always stick with Griffith if he can keep gelling with Krejci and Lucic.

Ultimately, there is one trade target the Bruins should seriously be considering if they want to remain a top-tier team with a feared number one forward grouping.

Continue reading Right Wing Option for Bruins Top Line »

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Injury Fallout: Chara to miss 4-6 weeks

October 24, 2014 at 8:42am in Boston, Bruins, NHL
Zdeno Chara ( Michael Ivins-USA TODAY Sports)

The Bruins lost to the New York Islanders 3-2 on Thursday night but it turns out they may have a lost a lot more than that. Zdeno Chara, the team’s captain and anchor on the blue line,  suffered a knee injury and did not return to the game. He is expected to miss 4-6 weeks, maybe more.

This is a huge blow to the team because in Chara they have their leader as well as the most important part of their defense.

“You see your captain go down, and probably your most important player go down. It’s definitely not a great sight to see,” B’s winger Milan Lucic said after the game. “He’s irreplaceable.”

The situation goes from bad to worse when it seems as though Chara may need surgery on top of that. For someone his size, at his age, this is not a good thing to hear. Chara has been a rock for the Bruins in his 9 seasons here, missing only 20 games during that span. Needless to say, his loss will be a very difficult one to replace.

Injury Fallout

So what options to the Bruins have in the wake of his injury? For starters, each of the members of the defense has to step up. This is especially true for Dougie Hamilton and Dennis Seidenberg, who will be called on to log the most minutes on the team’s top pairing. Adam McQuaid will have to up his physical presence, and Torey Krug will have to be the B’s top weapon on the blue line.

Continue reading Injury Fallout: Chara to miss 4-6 weeks »

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Jonathan Drouin (Frederick Breedon/Getty Images)

Your first weekly matchup of fantasy hockey likely wrapped up over the weekend and hopefully you managed to get out of it with a win. If not, don’t sweat it. It’s a long season and there’s still plenty of hockey to be played. At this point, we don’t really put too much stock into hot starts or cold starts with the players in the league.

However, this doesn’t mean that we should ignore the players’ performances thus far, either. Every year, we see players get off to hot starts. Some cool down, whereas others just don’t let up all season and it’s the managers who snagged them early that reap the benefits.

Here’s a list of players worth taking a look at if you need some help on your roster. And let’s be honest, who doesn’t?

Add now:

TJ Brodie – D - Calgary

There’s a reason Brodie just signed a 5 year extension with his team. He’s been in the league for years, but is now starting to put up points at an elite level. He’s quickly surpassing Giordano and Wideman as the best offensive threat on Calgary’s blue-line. With 7 points already, 3 of them on the power play, go ahead and see if he’s still on your waiver wire. He should’t be.

Sami Vatanen – D - Anaheim

We all thought Cam Fowler would be the one to blossom into an offensive weapon, but Vatanen has taken on that role run with it. He had a fantastic Olympics last in 2012 and is becoming a star in southern California. He’s got 5 points already and will keep it up as long as he’s got weapons like Getzlaf and Perry in front of him. Continue reading Fantasy Hockey Waiver Wire Adds; Weekly Mailbag »

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Bruins sign Gagne and Additional Notes

October 15, 2014 at 2:00pm in Bruins, NHL
Simon Gagne (Bruins.NHL.com)

The Bruins officially announced Tuesday morning that they signed forward Simon Gagne to a one year, $600,000 contract. Gagne, who was invited to camp on a tryout basis, impressed Coach Claude Julien and GM Peter Chiarelli enough to warrant a roster spot.

As a player, Gagne has been a talented goal scorer who can put the puck in the net and make smart passes. However, he has been a bit fragile as he has consistently missed time due to injury over the years. He hasn’t played more than 63 games in a season since ’08-’09, when he put up 74 points  for the Flyers.

It will be interesting to see where he fits in with this Bruins line-up. I think he would be a good fit with Patrice Bergeron (who wouldn’t), but you don’t want to break up the 63-37-18 line. Will he slide in with Milan Lucic and David Krejci on the first line? That’s a tall task for someone who has exactly 12 goals over the past three seasons.

Continue reading Bruins sign Gagne and Additional Notes »

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fraser

When the Bruins traded young offensive star Tyler Seguin to the Dallas Stars in July 2013 they received an impressive haul in return. The two headliners of the deal were Loui Eriksson and Reilly Smith, both of whom played extensively last year save for the time Eriksson missed due to injury. The Bruins also got a little known right wing named Matt Fraser. Fraser played sparingly last season, 18 games including playoffs, but performed in big moments including scoring an overtime winner in game four of the second round against the Canadiens in Montreal. This season the 24 year old winger could not only end up playing on the Bruins’ top line, but he could be a real difference maker for a team with Stanley Cup aspirations.

Fraser will begin 2014 skating with Milan Lucic and David Krecji, once Krecji returns from injury. Originally it was thought that Eriksson would occupy the right wing spot vacated by Jarome Iginla, but Fraser outplayed Erikson during training camp and will get an opportunity to play with Boston’s top line. If Eriksson ends up playing on the top line, Fraser would play on the third line with Swedish assist master Carl Soderberg and defensive stopper Chris Kelly. Either way, Fraser is poised to score often.

Continue reading Why Matt Fraser Could be the Piece that Puts the Bruins Over the Top »

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