The most up-to-date content on the planet
this just in
 RSS
WEEI » This Just In » Brickley on D&C: 'Hard to defend' dirty hits
Wed, 04/18/2012 - 9:45am  

Brickley on D&C: 'Hard to defend' dirty hits

NESN Bruins analyst Andy Brickley joined the Dennis & Callahan show Wednesday morning for his weekly appearance, this time to discuss the aggressive and often dirty play seen in the NHL playoffs, as well as the state of the Bruins now three games into their series against the Capitals.

After two closely contested games in Boston, which the teams split, the Bruins were able to rebound from a Game 2 double-overtime loss for a win on the road in Game 3. For Brickley, the difference was simply that the Bruins came out harder and more aggressive than they had in the first two contests of the series.

"I think big picture is the fact that they played harder," Brickley said. "They competed harder and they won more battles.

"They were just fully engaged emotionally, mentally and physically. When they play that way, they are the superior team."

The series also took another important and decisive shift in Game 3 when the Capitals' Nicklas Backstrom cross-checked Rich Peverly at the end of the game, a hit that landed him a one-game suspension. Backstrom's absence could prove to be a very costly one in Game 4, according to Brickley.

"[It's] very significant," Brickley said. "Some people refer to him as the engine as far as their offense is concerned. It certainly gives them balance.

"It’s a significant loss. They have enough that they’ll give the Bruins a hard time, but without him their chances of winning go down dramatically."

Backstrom's hit, however, has been far from an isolated incident thus far in the playoffs, as games have been defined by big hits and the suspensions that have come about from them. While Capitals coach Dale Hunter defended Backstrom after the game, Brickley said that it's hard to rush to the defense of these players making these hits.

"If you look across the National Hockey League right now [with] what’s going on in the playoffs and the number of suspensions and how nasty it is, it’s hard to defend anything that some of these players are doing," Brickley said. "I think it’s a coach just trying to defend his player, hoping to get that penalty rescinded at the end of the game because Backstrom is a critical piece of his offense. Without him, they are not as good of a team and that puts them in a difficult position."

Taking a series of factors into consideration, most notably the way that the Bruins came out in Game 3 and Backstrom's suspension, Brickley said that the series has shifted decidedly in the Bruins' favor.

"The fact that the Bruins played the way that they wanted to play, not completely, but they looked more like the Boston Bruins and the style of the Boston Bruins want to play," Brickley said. "I think they raised their hate level for this team, which I think is a good thing.

"The absence of Backstrom, they delved into the young rookie goaltender’s mind, I think that all favors Boston. If Boston comes out, as I expect, to impose their will, I would expect them to win both games in Washington."

Following are more highlights from the conversation.

On what NHL officials have to think of the playoffs so far: "I don’t think they like it. I think they love that there’s a lot of one-goal games, there’s a lot of overtime, there’s a lot of parity, lower seeds can beat the higher seeds. I think they love all of that. I just think the nastiness … they’re looking for consistency, they’re looking for responsibility and some accountability from the players. If they start to get that the deeper they get into the playoffs, then the hockey becomes more of the focus than all of this nastiness that we’re watching. Brendan Shanahan has a difficult job. He’s basically the voice of authority that has to mete out all of the discipline and that is a challenging position to be in. He’s trying to do it right, but you’re never going to be in the right side of that argument in that kind of position of authority."

On whether the Capitals will channel the aggressiveness of other playoff teams: "I don’t think it’s in their makeup, I really don’t. One or two players, perhaps, but they want to play, I believe, the right way, which is the way the Bruins play. They want to man up, they want to be physical, they want to stay within the rules, they want to play playoff-style hockey, which is rough and tumble. You’ve got to get some penalties along the way, but I don’t think they want to be or have the reputation that they’re going to leave their feet to make hits, they’re going to blindside people, they’re going to run people from behind. It’s not in their makeup and it’s not in the Bruins' makeup."

On whether the crying gesture from Karl Alzner will motivate the Bruins the same way Alex Burrows' biting did in the Stanley Cup finals last year: "I don’t know if it’s on par with that, but it certainly gets players’ attention. The Bruins aren’t going to make a big deal out of it publicly, but they’re taking numbers for sure."

On Rafi Torres' hit on Marian Hossa in the Coyotes-Blackhawks series: "I think he’s a predator by nature. I can’t believe this guy hasn’t been suspended more times when I watch this guy play. The fact that the intent is to hurt, that he left his feet, I would expect a lengthy suspension because he’s a repeat offender."

To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page. For more Bruins news, visit the team page at weei.com/bruins.




Audio On Demand

Patriots Coach Bill Belic…

Patriots Coach Bill Belichick with Dale and Holley

We sit down with Bill Belichick on a Patriots Monday and get his take on a nail-biting win over the Jets, as well as his feelings on Peyton Manning breaking the NFL record for touchdowns.

Vince Wilfork with Dale and Holley

We check in with Big Vince on a Patriots Monday. Vince sounds like he's fighting a cold but swears he'll be good to go come Sunday. Vince tells Dale and Holley that their defense will have to be better if they expect to keep winning, especially against the ground game.

Tedy Bruschi with Dale and Holley

Full Tilt, Full Time #54 Tedy Bruschi talks to Dale and Holley about a record breaking night for Peyton Manning, and a tough win for the Patriots this past Thursday.

We Hate Dwyane Wade - Kir…

We Hate Dwyane Wade - Kirk Minihane Previews the Celtics

Kirk Minihane joins the We Hate Dwyane Wade Show to preview the upcoming Celtics season. Ben and Sam also discuss the Rajon Rondo/Jeff Green trade rumors and dabble in the classic NBA analytics debate.

NWOA Injury Report - Rajon Rondo

Dr Nick Leung for the Newton Wellesley Orthopedics Association joins Ben to talk about Rajon Rondo's broken hand.

We Hate Dwyane Wade - 10-1-14

The debut edition of the We Hate Dwyane Wade show. Ben and Sam preview the Celtics and talk about other summer news around the NBA.

Joe Castiglione wraps up …

Joe Castiglione wraps up the 2014 Red Sox Season with a Poem

Joe Castiglione does his annual wrap-up of the season by reading the poem by Bart Giamatti.

Mut and Bradford on the disappointing season for Jackie Bradley, Jr and Xander Bogaerts 9-28-14

Mut and Rob discuss the "kids" and the variety of young bodies the Red Sox called upon this season. Specifically, they look at Bogaerts and Bradley, Jr. and where things went wrong. They give their opinions on which one will right the ship next season.

Minor Details Ep. 101: Red Sox director of player development Ben Crockett on the state of the Red Sox system

Description: Red Sox farm director Ben Crockett looks back at the 2014 Red Sox prospect season by answering listener questions about a number of Red Sox prospects as well as broader issues and themes in the farm system.

Tony Marinaro from TSN 69…

Tony Marinaro from TSN 690 in Montreal yells about Bruins-Habs 10-17-14

The world's biggest Canadiens fan Tony Marinaro joins MFB after the Bruins and Tuukka Rask suffered another loss in Montreal.

Jack Edwards with Dale and Holley

We check in with NESN's Jack Edwards for a Bruins-Canadiens preview, live from French-Quebec.

Pierre McGuire, NBC: Bruins have had horrible early schedule. 10-16-14

Pierre McGuire joins MFB to analyze last night's Bruins-Red Wings game and preview tonight's game against the Canadiens. Pierre also offers his take on fighting in the NHL.

Headlines, Headlines, Hea…

Headlines, Headlines, Headlines: Monica Lewinsky joins Twitter 10-21-14

The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane.

Oscar Pistorious sentenced to only 5 years in prison 10-21-14

The guys opened the show discussing the sentencing of Pistorious.

Tom Brady on Peyton Manning's touchdown record 10-20-14

Tom Brady discussed Peyton's record breaking night.

Patriots have tough 6 gam…

Patriots have tough 6 game stretch ahead, 10-21-14

The heart of the schedule is afoot, and Christian thinks the Pats could go 2-4 over this stretch or possibly even 1-5.

Christian's Top 5 Coaches in the NFL, 10-20-14

Christian talks about his Top 5 coaches in the NFL.

Three For All - Christian has poisoned himself

Christian learns a thing or two about lead poisoning. San Francisco hates Lorde until the World Series is over. Floyd Mayweather sued for false imprisonment.

Tedy Bruschi: I recognize…

Tedy Bruschi: I recognize the greatest of Manning, but I'm still going with Tom

Full Tilt, Full Time #54 Tedy Bruschi talks to Dale and Holley about a record breaking night for Peyton Manning, and a tough win for the Patriots this past Thursday.

Bill Belichick (wryly): It's comforting to know Manning has thrown more TD's against us than anyone

We sit down with Bill Belichick on a Patriots Monday and get his take on a nail-biting win over the Jets, as well as his feelings on Peyton Manning breaking the NFL record for touchdowns.

Vince Wilfork: We just couldn't get off the field on third down

We check in with Big Vince on a Patriots Monday. Vince sounds like he's fighting a cold but swears he'll be good to go come Sunday. Vince tells Dale and Holley that their defense will have to be better if they expect to keep winning, especially against the ground game.

10 Years since the Red So…

10 Years since the Red Sox began their comeback and eventual World Series Championship

Mikey, Villani and Lenny are talking about the 2004 Red Sox on the anniversary of Game 4 of the ALCS with Dave Roberts steal abd Bill Mueller driving him in and what it was like to witness.

The Patriots record during the regular season and Super Bowl

Mikey, Mut and Lenny are talking about the Patriots and how they have stacked up through the years and what got them to the three championships and five Super Bowl appearances in the Brady-Belichick era.

Bill Belichick and the Patriots Draft History

Mikey and Mut take a call from someone who wants to criticize Belichick the GM and his history of drafting players and making moves in the draft.

Sausage and Curtis fight …

Sausage and Curtis fight back 10-21-14

The Dennis & Callahan Show producers fight back.

D&C's Breaking Balls: The Proust Questionnaire and our producers suck 10-21-14

On this edition of Breaking Balls, Dino, Gerry and Kirk discuss their producers' performance and take the Proust Questionnaire.

The Fantasy Football Hour with Jim Hackett and Pete Davidson - Week 7, 10-19-14

This week Pete gives the listeners a brief, but enthusiastic history lesson the ineptitude of the New York Jets. They also help you set your final rosters for your Week 7 fantasy teams.

Tom Brady on Peyton Manni…

Tom Brady on Peyton Manning's touchdown record 10-20-14

Tom Brady discussed Peyton's record breaking night.

More from this show

Tim Hasselbeck on Manning…

Peyton Manning breaks Fav…

Peyton Manning breaks Favre's touchdown record 10-20-14

The guys opened the show discussing Peyton Manning's record setting night in Denver.

More from this show

Tedy Bruschi: I recognize…

Tedy Bruschi: I recognize the greatest of Manning, but I'm still going with Tom

Full Tilt, Full Time #54 Tedy Bruschi talks to Dale and Holley about a record breaking night for Peyton Manning, and a tough win for the Patriots this past Thursday.

More from this show

Bill Belichick (wryly): I…

Bill Belichick (wryly): It's comforting to know Manning has thrown more TD's against us than anyone

We sit down with Bill Belichick on a Patriots Monday and get his take on a nail-biting win over the Jets, as well as his feelings on Peyton Manning breaking the NFL record for touchdowns.

More from this show

Weei Writers