Posts tagged montreal canadiens

What’s better than a Bruins-Habs “friendly” matchup?

The Bruins went through their pregame paces this morning, at the Bell Centre in Montreal, preparing for tonight’s game between the rivals.

Above are a few scenes from morning skate…

1) First off, Gregory Campbell firing pucks at the boards while waiting to jump into his faceoff rounds with Assistant Coach Doug Jarvis.

(During skate, I usually watch rushes, before roaming a bit to try and get photos. No. 11 may or may not have been [he was] nonchalantly firing the shots because I had the phone camera in the first row, literally pushed right up against the glass. Hey, it made for this great photo of the Merlot Liner.)

2 and 3) The Bell Centre has to be one of my favorite road arenas. The history in the rafters, the red seats that welcome us every time we arrive at the empty, quiet rink. And the atmosphere that fills the seats come game-time. Away from the Garden, this is one of the best.

4) Assistant Coach Doug Jarvis dropping pucks for faceoff practice with David Krejci and the Bruins’ centermen. There’s a reason that Boston has been a dominant team in faceoffs season after season. Patrice Bergeron always helps their statistics, but “Jarvy” (the ultimate NHL ironman in his playing days with Montreal) leads the charge.

5) Shawn Thornton heading out onto the ice for pregame stick (stick tap to our video producer who captured this great shot).

6) Center-ice stretch to wrap up skate. The Bruins seemed undecided as to who to force into the middle to lead the stretch, until sending Quebec native Jordan Caron in.

7) Big Zee making his warmup rounds.

8) Patrice Bergeron speaking with reporters pregame. It’s always two “media scrums” for Bergy in Montreal, with the first go-round in French, followed by a round of the often same questions in Engligh.

9) Same goes for Coach Julien. Montreal is often the largest media contingent we encounter on the road, with the bilingual scrums for both Julien and Bergeron.

^CS

Bruins vs Habs: Rivalry at Its Finest

MONTREAL, QC - Ah, Bruins-Habs. The matchup that any fan of the game can appreciate.

There’s something so riveting about the passion of the fan bases, of the teams, of their histories. You feel it within the confines of the Garden, and you certainly feel it the moment you step foot in the Bell Centre, and look up at the 20,000-plus stacked red seats, with names like “M. Richard” in the rafters.

"There’s going to be a lot of intensity out there, high emotions. There’s not too many times in a career you’re able to be a part of this rivalry and to be in this building too because it’s a storied place to play and it should be very exciting."

- Reilly Smith

To read the rest of the pregame blog, click the link above or here.

Pregame in MTL: Kelly Still Day-to-Day, Jagr’s First Boston-Montreal Experience

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MONTREAL, QC - It’s the fourth and final meeting between the rival Bruins and Canadiens this year - and there’s no better time for the top spot in the Northeast to be on the line, yet again, as we head into the final quarter of the season.

"Well, I have to wait and see. I heard it’s pretty good," Jaromir Jagr smiled, as he talked to reporters this morning about the Boston-Montreal rivalry.

"It’s always good for hockey, and especially this year, with both teams are playing really well. And It’s a game for first place, so it’s going to be even more interesting."

Prior to the match-up, the Bruins held a well-attended “optional” skate at the Bell Centre this morning, with only Andrew Ference staying off the ice. Chris Kelly did join the B’s for the second straight day, but stayed on for extra work with the assistant coaches and Wade Redden after the rest of the Bruins exited the ice.

Coach held his media availability right at the start of the 11:30 a.m. pregame skate, and said that Kelly had not yet graduated to “game-time decision” and was still “day-to-day.” Once the center exited the ice, he confirmed to media that he would not be in the lineup tonight.

With Redden staying on for extra time, it appears the back end will remain the same heading into tonight against Montreal. Tuukka Rask was the first goaltender off, as Anton Khudobin stayed on for extra time, so it looks like No. 40 will get the start (though the starting goaltender was not confirmed by Coach).

As such, here is the projected lineup for tonight:
Lucic-Krejci-Horton
Marchand-Seguin-Jagr
Pandolfo-Peverley-Daugavins
Paille-Campbell-Thornton

Chara-Hamilton
Seidenberg-Ference
Bartkowski-Boychuk

On the opposing side, the Canadiens did not hold a morning skate at the Bell Centre, but practiced at their facility in Brossard. Per the Canadiens’ website, here were the lines during their skate. Plekanec is a game-time decision (groin injury), while P.K. Subban had a maintenance day and will be in Montreal’s lineup tonight.

Plekanec-Gionta-Ryder

Galchenyuk-Eller-Prust

Desharnais-Gallagher-Pacioretty

Moen-Halpern-White

Blunden-Dumont-Bourque

Gorges-Weber

Emelin-Markov

Bouillon-Drewiske

Kaberle

Carey Price is expected to be between the pipes.

-Caryn Switaj ^CS

Practice Before MTL: Redden Joins Team, New B’s Blending In

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WILMINGTON, MA - Practices, aside from pregame skates, have been few and far between this season, but today’s was an important one, as new Bruins Jaromir Jagr, Kaspars Daugavins and defenseman Wade Redden (who skated with the team today for the first time) took part in their first practice with the B’s at Ristuccia Arena.

The B’s had their skating legs today in practice, which ran for just under an hour, as the new-look lines with Jagr and Daugavins worked on their chemistry, and the team prepared for their next game against the rival Canadiens in Montreal on Saturday night.

There were no changes to lines from Thursday night’s 1-0 shutout of New Jersey, and although Chris Kelly is not yet back in the lineup, it was nice to see him sporting the grey jersey once again in his first practice with the team at Ristuccia (he joined the B’s for pregame skate at TD Garden Thursday morning).

Color schemes:
White: Lucic-Krejci-Horton
Gold: Marchand-Seguin-Jagr
Grey: Pandolfo-Peverley-Daugavins, Kelly
Merlot: Paille-Campbell-Thornton, Caron

With Redden on the ice, the B’s had eight defensemen practicing. Defensive pairings looked the same as the Thursday’s game as well, with Chara-Hamilton, Ference-Seidenberg and Bartkowski-Boychuk, and Redden/Johnson rounding out the fourth pair.

Adam McQuaid skated on his own yet again with Strength & Conditioning Coach John Whitesides before the B’s took the ice for practice - a positive sign in his recovery, though he’ll be staying back in Boston as the Bruins travel to Montreal. Though Coach Julien postpractice did tell media that he is progressing well and could be expected to join the team on the ice as early as next week.

On another positive note, Chris Kelly will be making the trip to Canada and Coach has now labeled him as “day-to-day” as he recovers from the broken left tibia he suffered on March 11 in Ottawa that originally had him out indefinitely. Kelly will be joining his former Senators teammate Wade Redden, who he was happy to be reunited with in the spoked-B. After practice, Kelly talked about the veteran presence now on the B’s, with three players who have played over 1,000 games (Chara, Jagr, Redden).

In a nice gesture towards the end of the skate, the B’s summoned Redden to lead the center-ice stretch - something indicative of the respect on this team and how quickly the new faces are being assimilated into the team.

For locker room quotes from Wade Redden, Kaspars Daugavins, Chris Kelly, Shawn Thornton, and Coach Julien following practice, be sure to stay tuned today to the Bruins Blog, BostonBruins.com and on Twitter @NHLBruins.

See you in Montreal, where the Bruins (52 points) and Canadiens (53 points) will once again (deja vu) be battling for the top spot in the Northeast as both teams sit only one point apart in the standings.

Note: In case you haven’t seen on the roster, Wade Redden will be wearing No. 6 with the B’s. Jagr is No. 68 and Daugavins, No. 16.

-Caryn Switaj ^CS

Pregame vs Habs: Boychuk Skates

BOSTON, MA - The Bruins were back together at TD Garden Wednesday morning for pregame skate, following Tuesday’s off day, in preparation for their third meeting on the season against the Canadiens tonight at 7:30 p.m. (ET).

Yet again, the two teams will be battling for first place in the Northeast Division, as both currently sit tied at the top with 45 points.

Pregame skate saw lines switched up again, but the biggest change was defenseman Johnny Boychuk back skating with the team for the first time since taking a puck off the skate last Friday (March 22) during practice in Ottawa. He had been termed day-to-day with a lower-body injury.

No. 55 started out the pregame skate paired with Zdeno Chara during rushes (a good sign, to say the least), and afterwards, Coach Julien gave an update.

"Uncertain," said Coach on Boychuk’s status. "He’s going to be reevaluated today and, so far, he hasn’t been cleared, until he’s been reevaluated here."

Coach was also asked if he had an update on Chris Kelly (out indefinitely with broken left tibia), and said he has yet to start skating so “until he’s on his skates it’s hard to say, or give you a time frame.”

Besides the welcome surprise of seeing Boychuk back on the ice, the B’s left wings were again swapped this morning, as Milan Lucic was back with David Krejci and Nathan Horton (how they ended the final seven minutes of Monday’s win), and Brad Marchand was skating alongside Rich Peverley and Jordan Caron.

Here were the rushes:
Lucic-Krejci-Horton
Paille-Bergeron-Seguin
Marchand-Peverley-Caron
Pandolfo-Campbell-Thornton

Tuukka Rask was first off at morning skate, so I’ll expect him to be between the pipes tonight coming off the 3-2 shootout win over Toronto on Monday night. Anton Khudobin also gave Rask some rest over the weekend, playing Thursday and Saturday, so hopefully No. 40 can carry that into tonight.

Stay tuned to BostonBruins.com for features stories and our pregame Bruins Beat heading into tonight’s match-up…

-Caryn Switaj ^CS


Coach: "Teammate Protecting a Teammate"

BOSTON, MA- Sunday night’s game between the Bruins and Canadiens had it all - an intense rivalry game for the top position in the East that saw fights break out, back-to-back goals, a thunderous atmosphere and a B’s team that pressed until the end, but couldn’t find their comeback magic, falling to the Habs 4-3.

Tyler Seguin, Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron racked up a combined eight points on the night, scoring two goals and recording six assists. And Seguin definitely had an extra spark to his game, firing five total shots on goal, including one at the very end that saw him robbed by Peter Budaj.

But no greater spark came than when Captain Zdeno Chara dropped the gloves with less than five minutes to go in the second period.

Seguin skated through the neural zone and passed the puck up to Bergeron, before Montreal’s Alexei Emelin came cross-ice and hit No. 19 on his left side, breaking his stick and sending the B’s forward sliding to the ice towards the Bruins bench. Seguin immediately went off the ice and down the tunnel to get checked out.

Meanwhile, Big Zee took an exception to the hit and fought Emelin in the corner behind Budaj, landing eight or nine upper cuts on the Hab.

"I mean, obviously the guy just broke his stick cross-checking Tyler and when he went down I was just reacting to it," Chara told media postgame. "But he’s one of our best players and I’m not going to just watch him getting crushed like that."

"We really are brothers. We just play for each other and protect each other."

Read the full postgame feature at the link above or by clicking here.

-Caryn Switaj ^CS

Watch the first interview with goaltender Malcolm Subban after he was selected 24th overall by the Bruins.