What happened yesterday in sports? A lot, and we are here to recap it for you.
* The Chicago Bulls topped the Miami Heat, 93-89 . This comes after both teams did not make many deadline moves, but the Heat are very much in on Troy Murphy, though I think he will end up a Celtic. Derrek Rose had 26 points for Chicago, while Dwayne Wade led all scorers with 34.
* The Boston Celtics fell to the new-look Nuggets, 89-75. Boston was without Kendrick Perkins and Nate Robinson, who they traded to the Thunder. Also out was Shaquille O’Neal, leaving the Celtics without any big men after Semih Erden was traded to Cleveland.
* The Philadelphia Flyers defeated the New York Islanders in OT, 4-3. The Islanders took an early lead, but the Flyers stormed back to take this one.
* The Toronto Maple Leafs beat the Montreal Canadiens, 5-4. Toronto took a 3-1 lead and Montreal later tied it with two PP goals. But the Maple Leafs scored soon after, and were able to win in Montreal.
* The Los Angeles Kings topped the Minnesota Wild in a key western conference game, 4-2. Also in the west, Vancouver topped St.Louis, 3-2, Dallas beat Detroit 4-1, and Chicago beat Nashville 3-0.
News and Notes:
* Some big moves in the NHL and NBA yesterday. Gerald Wallace was sent to Portland, which really shows the state Charlotte is in. That is all they have, and you have to wonder if folding is inevitable.
* I like the Perkins trade for both teams. From the Thunder side, they get a big man that can really make a difference. For the Celtics, they improve offenseivly with Jeff Green and while Perkins is great on defense, it does not hurt them that much. It is a gamble, with both O’Neal’s hurt, but if they get Murphy I think it’s well worth it.
* The goaltender carosual in Tampa Bay continues. They get rid of Dan Ellis and bring in Curtis McElhinny. I don’t think this makes a difference for the Lightning. The east will come down to Philadelphia and Boston.
* Brooks Orpik will miss the next five weeks for the Penguins. Tough loss after trading Alex Goligoski. Also interesting to see how Alex Kovalev works out there.
* And lastly, an NLL shout out. Brad Bannister, what are you doing? Folding the Roughnecks could kill the league, and you’re fine with it? Take the offer from the Flames and go away.
A lot has gone wrong for the 2009-2010 Boston Bruins. Opening Night 2009 was on October 1, 2009 vs the Washington Capitals. The Capitals won, 4-1. Now the Bruins are in the second round. And the Caps… Lost to the eight seed Montreal Canadiens.
As much that has gone wrong, (where to start?) so much has gone right. It all started the night Bruins leading goalscorer Phil Kessel was traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs for a first and second round draft pick this year, and a first round pick the next. Kessel was coming off labrum surgery in the offseason, so his season did not begin until November. He still had more goals than any Bruins player.
The Bruins where coming off a season where they lost veterans Aaron Ward, Shane Hnidy, Manny Fernandez, Stephane Yelle, PJ Axelsson, and later Chuck Kobasew. They brought in Derrek Morris, Steve Begin, and Daniel Paille.
More went wrong when it was announced five games into the that Kobasew had been traded to Minnesota, but also Milan Lucic had broke his finger. Things got worse when Marc Savard aggravated a broken foot before a game vs Nashville.
The Bruins goal after that was to tread water. They learned early they would not be that offensive juggernaut that got them to first overall in the east the season before. They would have to be more like the 2007-2008 Bruins who took the number one Canadiens seven games. The Bruins got Lucic back in late November vs Atlanta. Savard returned four games later in Minnesota, a game that was won in a shootout. But Lucic was re-injured when he took an awkward pass from Dennis Wideman, and he had a high-ankle sprain.
December would be highlited be the return of Phil Kessel to Boston. The Bruins won, 5-2, with Savard’s hat trick. Going into late December, many worried about the Bruins getting distracted by the upcoming winter classic at Fenway park. They showed this losses to their opponet, the Flyers, and a heartbreaking loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins, where Bill Guerin scored with 0.4 left in the game to tie it. After that Tuukka Rask, a rookie goaltender, started eight straight games opposed to last year’s Vezina trophey winner Tim Thomas.
Thomas was in net for the Winter Classic, and he was the biggest reason they won. The Bruins where down 1-0 with time ticking off the third period clock, and most where thinking “here we go again”. But Derrek Morris made a bueatiful slap-pass that Mark Recchi tipped in to tie it. It would be the second of the three Winter Classics to go to Overtime. The Bruins started off on the power play, but could not score. Thomas then made a fluery of saves the other way. Bruins MVP of the season Patrice Bergeron made a pass to Marco Sturm, which he tipped in. The Bruins did not know that would be the last home game they would win into Febuary.
A few nights later the Bruins misfourtone returned, when 22 seconds into the the game Savard injured his knee. It was revealed he had a torn MCL. In the stretch of his abscence, the Bruins went on a 10 game winless streak, started by a shootout loss in Los Angeles. The Bruins did get Savard back in Buffalo, a game where it showed how much the Bruins missed him, but they lost, 2-1. More bad news would erupt when rookie defenseman Johnny Boychuk was hit in the face by a puck vs the Vancouver Canucks. However, the winless streak would be snapped the next day in Montreal, Super Bowl Sunday.
The Bruins went on a four game winning streak before the olympics, all road games, in Montreal, Buffalo, Tampa Bay, and Florida. Six Bruins would go to the Olympics: Thomas (USA), Bergeron (Canada), Zdeno Chara and Miroslav Satan (Slovakia), David Krejci (Czech Republic), and Sturm (Germany).
After the Olympics, the Bruins hit another tough stretch. They lost their first night back on home ice to the Canadiens, 4-1. The Bruins bounced back in games vs Toronto and the Islanders before things would take a turn for the worst. In a game vs the Pittsburgh Penguins the next day, Matt Cooke, a known cheapshot artist around the league, concussed the Bruins best player in Savard. He would need a stretcher off the ice, and would be out indefinetly. Cooke was not suspended by the league. There was a lot of aftermath to follow the incident, from Bruins coach Claude Jullian and GM Peter Charelli stating their displeasure, to former Bruins coach and now Hockey Night in Canada host Don Cherry bashing Cooke. The Bruins would meet the Penguins again on March 18, eleven days after the hit. The Bruins lost, 3-0 in a completey heartless game where many wrote the Bruins off afterward. But the Bruins continued their theme of the season and never said die.
Two days later they would face a team fightning them for a playoff spot, the New York Rangers. The Bruins beat them, and then the Atlanta Thrashers, in convincing victories. Later, they would lose to the Lightning in maybe their best effort all season. But they never said die.
In turned around on March 30, when the Bruins beat the New Jersey Devils in OT. After that they gained points in every game but one.
That’s when the good luck began to turn their way. The Bruins finished as the nukber six seed in the east, with a matchup with the Buffalo Sabres. They got the number two draft pick overall, thanks to Toronto. They beat Buffalo in six games, and would have their star playmaker Savard return. And they would have home ice vs the Philadelphia Flyers.
The season is far from over, but it’s hard to not appriciate what the Bruins have overcome this season. Sometimes good things come to those who wait. Maybe that will be the case for the Bruins. Or maybe their new hope will be shatered. Hopefully the former will come true, but either way, the Bruins have already amazed many. They never said die.
Q: Do you think the Red Sox will be as good as last year?
– Bree (via BBS.com)
A: Better. I love the Red Sox’s depth, more than any other team. If a guy like Ellsbury or Youkilis goes down the Sox are still a playoff contender. If Evan Longoria or Carl Crawford go out, forget about it. The pitching is by far thye best, and the offense is as good as anyone, (except New York) in my opinion.
Q: Could Mark Savard be having a more unlucky year ???
A: Probally not. It’s too bad the Bruins did not retailiate on Cooke Thursday night, they should have. This hurts the Bruins so much, who I think have been playing great. The Bergeron-Recchi-Sturm line is fantastic, and Blake Wheeler looks like he did at the begining of last season. If they had Savard, I could see a serious playoff run. But things look much more bleak now. The NHL is making a new head-shots rule, but it might be too little too late. The hit on Seabrook of Chicago was horrible, as well as Ovechikin’s on Campbell (ironic name).
The Celtics beat the Rockets, 94-87. Pierce had 26 points. The Celtics take on the Mavericks tonight in Dallas at 9pm.
The Red Sox lost to the Pirates, 9-7. I was at this game, right behind the on-deck circle. I got autographs from Chuck Tanner and Ron Johnson. David Ortiz hit a two run shot off Paul Maholm. I am in Dunedin tomorrow to see the Sox take on the Jays,
The Flames beat the Sharks, 4-3. The Sharks scored twice in the final two minutes, but the Flames held on to stay tied for the eight seed with Detroit.
The Oilers beat the Redwings, 3-2. Detroit remains in the playoffs by gaining the point in the SO, with the Flames still behind them. Deven Dubynk got his first career win in net for Edmonton.
News and Notes: Yesterday on WEEI’s Dale and Holley, the Bruins Shawn Thornton said he would have liked to knock out Cooke in their fight. I would have liked that too, Shawn.
Ryan Westmoreland has been moved from ICU to NRU in his recovery from brain surgery.
The Red Sox signed Alan Embree.
Tomorrow the Boston Bruins play the Pittsburgh Penguins in one of their most inticapated games of the season. The Bruins are currently in eighth place in the East after their win vs the Hurricanes last night. The New York Rangers lost, so the Bruins remain three points ahead of the team they will play Sunday. The Penguins are in second place in the East and lead their divison. This is the first time the teams have met since Matt Cooke cheapshot Marc Savard and ended his season.
Stats: Leading goal scorer: Marco Sturm (21)
Points: Patrice Bergeron (above)(Credit: SI.com)
Assists: Zdeno Chara
Goalie: Tuukka Rask
Most games played: Blake Wheeler, Mark Recchi (above) (Credit, Bruinscrew.Word press)
Penguins: Evgeni Malkin (knee, questionable)
Bruins: Patrice Bergeron (Knee, questionable)
Andrew Ference (Groin, out)
Marc Savard (If you don’t know the situation by know, you live under a rock)
* Malikn and Crosby will have some excuse to sit out the game. Probally Cooke as well.
* Big win last night. Good to see a 60 minute effort by the whole team. Goals by five different players is always a good thing. It was Bergeron, Ryder, Recchi, Krejci, (who all have double figures in goals) and Boychuk. It was only Carolina, but other thn Montreal they have been the hottest team in hockey.
* X-rays on Bergeron’s knee where negative after taking a Mark Stuart slapshot to the leg. Bergeron is questionable for Thursday. Claude Jullian says the prognosis is a bad bruise.
* If Matt Cooke does not come out of the game peeing his pants, I will be very disapointed. Remeber the Dallas game last year? Seems like a different team now.
* Daniel Paille better start scoring. If he scoes 16 goals, the Bruins get an additional third round pick. If he doesn’t, they lose thier fifth rounder. Come on Paille!
* Tyler Seaguin. Remember tht name. Come on Toronto, keep losing!!
You can predict the goal scorers on the BBS Message Boards at the Bruins Predictions Page threads. You can discuss and chat about the game here. Check out the Video Vault at BBS for Bruins videos.
Today the NHL sent a message to the players. It’s ok to try to hurt someone. On Sunday the Penguins Matt Cooke knocked the Bruins Marc Savard unconcsious on ablindside hit from the behind. The punishment? Nothing. Disgusting. The same thing happned in November when Mike Richards took out David Booth. Both players where given concussions. Booth missed 45 games and missed the Olympics for team USA. Savard has so far missed only one game but will likley not see the ice again until next season. These are brain injuries. That is an internal organ. When that is injured, it threatens the player’s and persons career and health. But that’s ok. It’s legal. As long as it’s a shoulder and not an elbow. The fact Cooke was not suspended is inexcusable. He pretty much admitted it was intentional when he said he was nearly hit the same way. So that makes it ok? Beacuse you almost got hit, it’s fine to knock a player out? I know many people want Sidney Crosby hurt now, but two wrongs don’t make a right. Now would “leagaly” hitting Cooke be wrong? Not from where I stand. Colin Campbell brought it too this. If Cooke is hurt Thursday in Boston, Campbell will have a lot of problems. It’s sickining this has to even be part of a great sport. You never see this in the Olympics. Then again, you don’t see players like Cooke in the Olympics. If you are so bad the only way you can win is by hurting other people, you don’t belong in a professional sport. This is a game. A game. And you have people seriously hurt for wanthing to play a game. It’s really pathetic something wasn’t done about this. If doing that was not worth a suspension, I’m scared to see what is.
Since 2007-2008, there have been 6,000 to 7,000 body checks. There have been 200 reported concussions. That is 200 people who have their health in danger. And the NHL is fine with it. I hope Cooke grows eyes in the back of his head before March 18, for his sake.
The Red Sox beat the Cardinals, 7-6. Josh Beckett pitched three perfect innings. The Red Sox no-hit the Cards through seven innings, but they got the bats going vs Randor Bierd. Che-Hsuan Lin got the game winning single in the ninth inning.
The Cleveland Cavaliers beat the San Antonio Spurs, 97-95. Lebron James and Shaquile O’Neal did not play. Delonte West picked up 16 points.
The New York Knicks beat the Atlanta Hawks, 99-98. The Knicks held on after Al Horford’s basket was reveiwed and revealed to be after the buzzer.
The Dallas Stars beat the Washington Capitals, 4-3. The Stars where down two goals to the best team in the NHL and came back to score three in the third period on six shots. Marty Turco had a career best 49 saves.
News and Notes: Marc Savard has been diagnosed with a grade 2 concussion after the devastaing hit from Matt Cooke on Sunday. Savard was cleared to fly and returned to Boston yesterday for further examination. Savard said he did not remember taking the shot or the hit. The real nature of the concussion will be watched over the next 4-5 days. His timetable for return in uncertain.
Jonathan Papelbon pitched an inning for the Red Sox, a perfect inning.
The Celtics Micheal Finley is expected to join the team in Milwakee for tonight’s game. Marcus Landry was assigned to the NBA D-league.
The Bruins have assigned Dany Sabuan to Providence, and recalled defenseman Jeff Penner. That tells me that Andrew Fernece is not ready to return on the roadtrip, and they need a backup defenseman.
The Bruins play Phil Kessel and the Toronto Maple Leafs tonight, and the Celtics take on the
Here is your Sunday recap in Boston sports.
The Red Sox beat the Orioles, 5-4. The Sox where down in the eigth inning, but an Angel Sanchez double and Gil Velezquez single tied it. Mark Wagner homered in the ninth inning to win. Casey Kelly picked up the win and Robert Manuel the save. David Hernandez got the L for the O’s.
The Bruins lost to the Penguins, 2-1. Marc Savard was taken out on a stretcher after a dirty hit from behind by a dirty player, Matt Cooke. Savard took an awkward pass from the left wing and dumped it in, and Cooke came from behind and slammed his elbow into his head. Obvious intent to injure. The NHL says they want to get rid of head shots, but no penalty was called on the play. I expect Cooke to be let of the hook with a two or three game suspension, though he deserves a season suspension in my mind. I’ll talk more about this at news and notes.
The Celtics beat the Wizards, in a comeback win. Down by as much as thriteen in the fourth quater, Ray Allen hit two key three pointers in the comeback. Rajon Rondo missed a free throw down two, and Kendrick Perkins picked up the rebound and passed to Ray who was beyond the arc. He hit it, of course.
The Sabres beat the Rangers, 2-1 in OT. The Rangers gain a point on the Bruins in the Eastern Conference standings, and now sit only two points behind them after the Bruins loss.
The Canadiens beat the Ducks, 4-3 in a shootout. Montreal entered the third period down three goals, and came back to tie. Tomas Plekanic sealed it in the SO. Montreal is now two points behind the Bruins.
The Magic beat the Lakers, 96-94. Kobe Bryant could not hit the buzzer beater this time. Vince Carter threw down 25 points in the win. The Lakers have now lost three games in their west coast swing, to the Bobcats, Heat, and now Orlando.
The 76ers beat the Raptors, 114-101. Yes, the C’s actully have to worry about the Raptors, who are behind them in the divison. Good to gain a game on them. Expect a Celtics-Raptors first round playoff series.
The Oilers beat the Devils, 2-0. Always a good thing, as the B’s need the Oilers to heat up if they want Taylor Hall in the draft. Can Toronto catch them?
News and Notes: I promised I would touch on this topic again and I will. That hit Cooke had on Savard was the second dirtiest hit I have seen this year. The only worse was Mike Richards on David Booth in an almost identical situation that took Booth out 45 games and he missed the Olympics for team USA. Did Richards get suspended? Of course not. Welcome to the NHL. This is the second time Cooke had handed out a hit like this. It’s time the NHL does something.
I was at the Red Sox game yesterday afternoon. Right behind the Sox dugout. Victor Martinez tossed me a ball! That was sweet. I got to see Casey Kelly pitch live for the first time. That kid has some sick stuff. I can see him in the big leagues next year. Or maybe this year. If Kelly is what they think he is, then they can just let Beckett walk without a problem.
Thanks for all the mailbag questions. It will be back again at it’s reaguler time Sunday. Sorry for no recap yesterday, I was at the Red Sox game, then I watched the Bruins and Celtics. Today the Red Sox play the Cardinals at 1:05 pm. Josh Beckett will face off vs Chris Carpenter. I will be in Ft. Myers Wednesday when the Red Sox play the Rays. I expect to see either Lester or Lackey.