Some of the following quotes can also be found in Wednesday’€™s feature on Johnny Boychuk.

Johnny Boychuk will play his first game back at the Garden Thursday. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Johnny Boychuk will play his first game back at the Garden Thursday. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Some of the following quotes can also be found in Wednesday’€™s feature on Johnny Boychuk. For more on the former Bruin’€™s start to his Islanders career and his return to Boston Thursday, click here.

Speaking to WEEI.com earlier in the week, Islanders defenseman Johnny Boychuk said that though being traded away from Boston was difficult, he saw the move coming to an extent.

“They didn’€™t tell me [their plans], but we all knew,” Boychuk said. “You knew that somebody was going to get moved. Even if you don’€™t watch hockey, you would know that somebody’€™s going to get moved, just because we had eight guys.

“You’€™re not going to carry two extra D men. We usually [carried] one, but you’€™re not going to carry two. They thought they got the best deal for me, so that’€™s the way it goes. That’€™s the way the league is.”

Boychuk said that he figured that Zdeno Chara, Dougie Hamilton, Torey Krug, Dennis Seidenberg and Kevan Miller were safe from being traded, leaving him on a short list of defensemen the B’€™s could deal. His cap hit ($3.36 million) was the highest of the group, which also included Adam McQuaid and Matt Bartkowski.

Peter Chiarelli said after trading Boychuk to the Islanders that negotiations never started for a contract extension with the free-agent-to-be before the B’€™s traded him. The lack of communication on a new contract made the trade less of a surprise for Boychuk.

“We didn’€™t talk, so I just figured something’€™s probably going to happen,” Boychuk said.

Boychuk was waking up from his pregame nap the day of Boston’€™s last preseason game when he got the call from Chiarelli.

“Peter phoned me when I was just waking up from my pre game nap, because I was supposed to play [against Detroit],” Boychuk. “As soon as I said ‘€˜hello’€™ and he said, ‘€˜Hi Johnny, this is Peter,’€™ I was like ‘€˜ugh.’€™ You know that you’€™re getting traded when Pete calls you.”

As for the reception he expects from the Boston crowd Thursday night, Boychuk said he expects an emotional return.

“[Expletive],” Boychuk said. “That’€™s going to be’€¦ different. It’€™s going to be hard. It will definitely be hard.”

Click here for Wednesday’€™s feature on Boychuk and here for the Bruins’€™ thoughts on Boychuk’€™s return to the Garden.

Blog Author: 
DJ Bean
We talk pucks with Jack Edwards of NESN for his take on an impressive win over the San Jose Sharks and the state of the B's in general.

WILMINGTON — Johnny Boychuk is expecting an emotional return to the Garden Thursday. Tuukka Rask might not know who Johnny Boychuk is.

“Oh, is he playing? I hope he gets the start. It would be good for him,” Rask said Wednesday when asked what it would be like to play against “Johnny.”

Proving that goaltenders live in their own goaltending world, Rask thought that the “Johnny” being discussed was Islanders backup Chad Johnson, who spent last season playing in Boston with Rask.

Rask laughed when he realized his error, adding that he obviously wished the best for his former teammate. He did note that if he allowed a goal to Boychuk, who has already scored twice this season for the Islanders, Rask would “never hear the end of it.”

“He actually texted me after he got traded,” Rask said. “He said whenever we play I should give him a goal, but I hope he doesn’€™t score.”

Rask was then reminded that he already has a big contract, while Boychuk is in the final year of his contract. If Rask were a true friend, he’€™d help Boychuk boost those numbers and net him a bigger payday.

“Yeah, well if the game’€™s 9-1 or something for us, then accidents happen,” Rask said with a grin.

As for Boychuk himself, the 30-year-old is loving life with the Islanders, but said it will be very difficult to take the ice Thursday (and undoubtedly receive a warm welcome) in front of the Garden crowd.

“[Expletive],” Boychuk said this week when asked what he expected. “That’€™s going to be… different. It’€™s going to be hard. It will definitely be hard.”

Claude Julien said he’€™s happy for the early success Boychuk has had with the 4-2-0 Islanders. Boychuk’€™s six points through six games are as many as he had in the lockout-shortened 2013 season with the Bruins.

“He’€™s a good team guy. He’€™s an easy guy to like for players and coaches,” Julien said. “€œHe came in and played a big role in our Stanley Cup run. Many thought he’€™d be an American Leaguer. We traded for him and he stepped up and became a really reliable defenseman in this league, and obviously a good defenseman. We lost a good person and a good player.

“You’€™re always happy that he’€™s happy well — of course you’€™re going to hear us say except when it’€™s against us, but I don’€™t think there’€™s anybody here that wishes [anything] but the best for him. Then you move on, and that’€™s what we’€™re trying to do. Hopefully he’€™s done the same thing. He seems to have done that. When you look at his start with that team, he’€™s had a good start as well.”

Blog Author: 
DJ Bean
Brick talked about the emergence of Torey Krug as a solid D pairing with Seidenberg and how well the Power Play is playing. He contributes that to 2 different units competing. Brick also likes the versatility of Simon Gagne.
Brick talked about the emergence of Torey Krug as a solid D pairing with Seidenberg and how well the Power Play is playing. He contributes that to 2 different units competing. Brick also likes the versatility of Simon Gagne.

[0:00:00] ... Knew our bad days than it feeds invented baloney Chris Florio source Boston Bruins right now welcome to the show as we always do at noon on Wednesday's anti Wrigley is brought to us by Shaw's supermarkets. Andy was what I thought what have been the most interesting watched to date for the Boston Bruins seized in the win last night over the San Jose Sharks five to three. To get the empty netter at the end from David Krejci and go on defeat San Jose. I thought what was particularly interesting about the game was or as well as the Bruins played. They did so without Patrice Bergeron having one of his better games in fact he struggled at times and got the double minor at the end. If you ...
[0:05:00] ... there he put a check mark next that fourth line now the Gregory Campbell has come back and oh and what you expect that a guy need long term but that fourth line. Gregory Campbell has made a difference. I don't question. No question in any one of those blue guys said you know we have that ...
[0:10:56] ... I'll that has any Brinkley joins us once a week it's not Boston Bruins hockey. ...





There may have been frustration among those in the sellout crowd at TD Garden when the Bruins allowed two goals in the span of 37 seconds of the second period Tuesday night, leading to a 3-2 deficit after two periods. But that was not the mood in the dressing room as the Bruins prepared to take the ice in the third.

As a matter of fact, it was the determination to stick to the game plan of throwing pucks to the net and generating traffic in front of San Jose goalie Antti Niemi that Claude Julien, Milan Lucic and others credited for scoring three in the third, en route to a 5-3 win for Boston’s first winning streak of the season.

“It was exactly what we talked about after the second,” Julien said. “I really liked our game, even the second period was probably our best second period of the season. We just had that little lapse again that allowed them to score a couple goals. Coming out for the third, I thought we were playing well enough that we could give ourselves a chance if we just stayed with it. And our guys did exactly that. We found a way to get some goals. Same old, same old, getting your nose dirty around the net, jumping on those loose pucks. [It] made a big difference.”

Lucic had his most productive and active games of the season in front of the net. The effort didn’t produce any goals off his stick but he did assist on three goals, including the game-tying goal five minutes into the third period that sent the Bruins on their way.

“I think that’€™s the most important thing, especially when your down, is to stick with the game plan and play desperate to get yourself back in the game,” Lucic said. “Talking in the second intermission here, going out for the third, we just talked about being positive and sticking to the game plan and giving ourselves opportunities where we can get ourselves back in the game. We did that and were able to come out with a big win.”

Lucic agrees with Julien that the team’s fight and focus has started to re-appear in the last four games, a sign that the wins will follow.

“I think so. I think that’€™s where the focus has shifted and I think that’€™s why we’€™re starting to have success and starting to play the way that we are,” Lucic added. “We’€™ve got to do whatever we can to keep that up and keep giving ourselves success by worrying about the things that matter, like you mentioned ‘€“ more than the things that are kind of not controlled by the players. Just focus on playing our game the right way and the way that the coaches put the plan together. When we do that we’€™re a real hard team to beat.”

Lucic also believes he’s turning a bit of a corner, and the three assists Tuesday night reinforce that positive vibe.

“I think so. [I'm] feeling a lot better, a lot more confident on the ice,” Lucic said. “Hope to get a few more shots on net, that’€™s probably the one area where I need to work at more on my game. Probably being a little bit more selfish and getting those shots on net. So, if I do that, the goals will come. I think as far as moving my feet and getting into those areas and being strong and hard on the puck and all that type of stuff is definitely over the last week, has gotten a lot better.”

Blog Author: 
Mike Petraglia

Johnny Boychuk has two goals and four assists with the Islanders this season. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- Midway through Monday's practice, Islanders coach Jack Capuano summoned his players to diagram a play on the dry erase board.



Gregory Campbell was one of many Bruins who came up big Tuesday night. (Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Gregory Campbell was one of many Bruins who came up big Tuesday night. (Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Usually the Patrice Bergeron line and Zdeno Chara-Dougie Hamilton pairing are the Bruins’€™ constants. They’€™re the guys who are going to create offensive-zone possessions and not make mistakes.

That wasn’€™t the case on Tuesday. Bergeron was on the ice for all three of the Sharks’€™ goals, linemates Brad Marchand and Reilly Smith joined him for two of them (it is worth noting that Marchand had a nice power-play goal), and Chara was on the ice for two of them as well. Those four and Hamilton were the only Bruins who finished with Corsi-for percentages under 50 percent, meaning they were the only Bruins who were on the ice for more 5-on-5 shot attempts against than shot attempts for.

That would seemingly be a recipe for disaster for the Bruins, especially when you consider that outside of the Carl Soderberg line, the rest of the team had been one giant question mark to this point in the season. David Krejci had looked good since his return, but linemate Milan Lucic was off to a slow start and he still didn’€™t have a set-in-stone right wing. The fourth line had featured several different combinations, and none of them had really done much. And the second and third defense pairings had been inconsistent at best, with Kevan Miller’€™s injury raising even more questions on the back end.

At least for one night, those questions turned into answers. Lucic, Krejci and rookie right wing Seth Griffith factored into four of the Bruins’€™ five goals, with Lucic notching three assists and Griffith scoring his first NHL goal. Two of the goals they were on the ice for — Griffith’€™s and Torey Krug’€™s — came as the direct result of getting bodies to the net. Krejci set a great screen on Krug’€™s, and then Lucic created some net-front havoc that freed up Griffith on his goal.

“I think it definitely was the best game that we’€™ve played so far this season,” Lucic said. “You saw we were hungry in the O-zone and hungry getting pucks to the net. We made some smart decisions in some important areas and it just seems like things are starting to head in the right direction.”

The fourth line of Daniel Paille, Gregory Campbell and Simon Gagne was a positive possession line that even created some chances against the Sharks’€™ top two lines. They scored what proved to be the game-winner midway through the third when Paille won the puck along the boards and threw a shot on net that Campbell tipped in for his first goal of the season.

Campbell and Paille were also big on the penalty kill, especially late in the game when Bergeron went to the box for a four-minute double minor. Until Krejci’€™s empty-netter to seal the win, Campbell had the biggest play on that kill when he blocked a Joe Thornton shot that came off a Chara turnover.

“We’€™ve got to be a responsible, reliable line, and Claude [Julien] has to trust us to put us in those situations,” Campbell said. “With hard work comes trust, and if we’€™re playing our game and we’€™re in on the forecheck and creating chances and bringing energy to the lineup, then he usually has confidence in us.”

As for the bottom two defense pairings, the only glaring error was a bad miscommunication between Krug and Dennis Seidenberg that led to a goal, but as Julien pointed out after the game, Bergeron’€™s line was just as much at fault, as Smith had failed to clear the zone and Bergeron and Marchand had gotten caught up ice.

Outside of that, the Seidenberg-Krug and Matt Bartkowski-Adam McQuaid pairings played well. Krug’€™s goal and two assists obviously stand out, but let’€™s not overlook the fact that Seidenberg had seven shots on goal and 12 shot attempts, and that he and Krug had Corsi-for percentages of 63 and 62 percent, respectively. McQuaid and Bartkowski weren’€™t far behind at 61 and 57 percent, respectively, and McQuaid was also big on that final penalty kill.

Obviously this is just one game. No one should think that all of the Bruins’€™ question marks are gone and that everyone’€™s going to be great from here on. But on a night when the Bruins’€™ best players were uncharacteristically unreliable, it was encouraging to see everyone else step up and show that they can lead the way, too.

Blog Author: 
Scott McLaughlin
Seth Griffith

Seth Griffith

The “Claude Never Plays the Kids” club will have to ignore Seth Griffith’€™s existence for the next little while.

With the right wing job on David Krejci‘€™s line remaining up for grabs early in the season, on Tuesday Julien gave Griffith, a 21-year-old second year pro, the biggest vote of confidence the youngster has received so far: he kept him on the line in the third period. Griffith then rewarded the decision by tying the game at three with his first career NHL goal.

After the first game of Griffith’€™s three-game stint in the lineup last week, the Bruins signed Simon Gagne and played him in Griffith’€™s place in the third periods of the team’€™s games against Detroit and Montreal. Those games saw Griffith get some chances (he rang iron in Montreal), but the B’€™s stuck with Gagne late in the one-goal games.

Griffith was scratched Saturday sent down Sunday to play in Providence and recalled Monday. After skating the first two periods on the Krejci line and Boston’€™s top power play unit, Griffith was kept with Krejci and Lucic to play key minutes in a one-goal game.

It paid off when Thomas Hertl accidentally knocked a loose puck into the high slot while trying to wrest the puck from Lucic. Griffith leaned into it and fired a wrist shot past defenseman Jason Demers and goaltender Antti Niemi at 4:50 of the third. It may have only been his fourth career NHL game, but by the way Griffith jumped against the glass in celebration, the goal was a big relief.

“Obviously every player when they get their first couple games they want to score right away,” Griffith said. “I’€™m happy it came sooner rather than later.”

Julien’€™s faith in the youngster appears to be growing as the team searches to find a full-time replacement for Jarome Iginla. That replacement may not yet be on the roster, but for now Julien thinks Griffith is giving him enough reasons to keep him with Krejci.

“Because he played well,” Julien said when asked what made him stick with Griffith Tuesday. “When he was playing well I thought he made some great plays. This isn’€™t because he scored; I think he scored because he played well. I just thought he was pretty good. [The Sharks are] a big team and I thought he handled himself well along the walls and making good plays.”

Added Julien: “If those guys are going to get better, sometimes you’€™ve got to put them in those positions when you feel they’€™re doing well enough to warrant that.”

Considering he was a relatively early cut from camp, Griffith has to be more than happy with where the season has taken him. Part of it is the fact that he’€™s the best right-shooting wing option the B’€™s have, but if the Bruins give him a prolonged look, perhaps he can make his case for a full-time job.

“We’€™re starting to get a little chemistry going,” Griffith said. “It’€™s good to see but it’€™s not too hard playing with two great players like that.”

Blog Author: 
DJ Bean