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Posted On Thursday, 03.27.2014 / 1:12 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Iginla settled in with Bruins after tumultuous year

BOSTON -- The Boston Bruins are home Thursday for a Stanley Cup Final rematch with the Chicago Blackhawks at TD Garden (7 p.m. ET, NHLN-US).

Right wing Jarome Iginla is scheduled to skate in his normal spot on a line with center David Krejci and Milan Lucic. It's a trio that has played together since the first day of training camp.

What a difference a year makes.

One year ago today Iginla was on his way from the Calgary Flames to the Pittsburgh Penguins in a trade that ended his lengthy run in Alberta and seemingly made the Penguins the odds-on favorite to win the Stanley Cup. Iginla and the Penguins finished their season in the Eastern Conference Final against the Bruins. Ironically, Iginla had picked Pittsburgh rather than Boston when Flames general manager Jay Feaster asked the player to waive his no-trade clause.

It's been a hectic and emotional year since Iginla left Calgary. After the Penguins opted not to bring him back, Iginla signed a one-year contract with Boston in the summer and has scored a team-high 28 goals and emerged as a key cog for a team that's challenging for the Presidents' Trophy. Along the way Iginla has made return trips to Pittsburgh and Calgary and had to adapt to life in a new organization for the second time in a year.

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Posted On Monday, 03.24.2014 / 2:20 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Canadiens eager to try snapping Bruins' win streak

BOSTON -- You can count Montreal Canadiens forward Dale Weise among those excited that the Boston Bruins have won 12 in a row.

The Canadiens will face the Bruins at TD Garden on Monday (7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, TSN, RDS).

"We were checking the score the other night [Saturday] against Phoenix, and Phoenix was up going into the third period and we were kind of hoping Boston would come back and win so we would get the chance to knock them off," Weise said after the morning skate Monday.

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Posted On Monday, 03.17.2014 / 1:07 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Bruins to be without Boychuk against Wild

BOSTON -- Boston Bruins defenseman Johnny Boychuk will not play Monday against the Minnesota Wild (7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, TSN2) because of a lower-body injury.

Boychuk went feet-first into the end wall in the third period against the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday. He returned to the game but wasn't able to take part in the morning skate with the Bruins on Monday.

"He didn't skate this morning because he can't," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "Right now he's too sore, so he's day-to-day. It's from obviously the incident [Saturday], and so he couldn't skate this morning. He came in early and we tried to see if he could and he couldn't."

Boychuk has three goals, 20 points and a plus-30 rating in 63 games.

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Posted On Thursday, 03.13.2014 / 1:00 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Coyotes forward Erat out against Bruins

Phoenix Coyotes forward Martin Erat, who was traded from the Washington Capitals prior to the NHL Trade Deadline after struggling to find a good fit in D.C., was injured after four shifts in Phoenix's road win against the Florida Panthers on Tuesday.

He was ruled out by coach Dave Tippett for the game against the Boston Bruins on Thursday at TD Garden. General manager Don Maloney told the Arizona Republic he hopes to have Erat back in the lineup within a week.

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Posted On Thursday, 03.06.2014 / 1:04 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Halak, Meszaros to sit out first games with new teams

BOSTON -- Trade deadline-day acquisitions by the Boston Bruins and Washington Capitals will have to wait to make their debuts with their new teams.

Defenseman Andrej Meszaros, acquired by the Bruins from the Philadelphia Flyers on Wednesday, and Capitals goaltender Jaroslav Halak, who was picked up from the Buffalo Sabres on Wednesday, were both confirmed out for the Bruins-Capitals game at TD Garden on Thursday by their respective coaches.

Meszaros will find himself in a similar situation with Boston that he was in with Philadelphia. The Bruins have eight healthy defensemen and there will be stiff competition to get in the lineup.

"I don't think it's going to be easy," Meszaros said after his first morning skate with the Bruins. "We have a great group over here and we had great defensemen in Philly too, so it's always tough to crack the lineup. And it's up to the coaches, and obviously up to me, how I'm going to respond if they give me a chance."

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Posted On Tuesday, 03.04.2014 / 1:06 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Bruins' Eriksson sidelined Tuesday by 'minor issue'

BOSTON -- The Boston Bruins are scheduled to be missing one of their key all-round forwards Tuesday night and the Florida Panthers should get a newcomer in their lineup at TD Garden.

Loui Eriksson did not take the morning skate with Boston and was ruled out of the game against the Panthers by coach Claude Julien.

Meanwhile, Brandon Pirri, who was acquired in a trade with the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday, took his first morning skate with the Panthers.

"It's a young group in here," Pirri said. "And they're on the right track to do something good. That's what I was looking for, an opportunity to be a part of something. And talking to [general manager Dale [Tallon] last night, it was exciting to be here. And he says we're headed in the right direction. So it's very exciting."

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Posted On Tuesday, 02.04.2014 / 12:19 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Bruins anticipate desperation from Canucks

BOSTON -- When the Vancouver Canucks visit the Boston Bruins on Tuesday at TD Garden, they will be hungry for a victory after losing their past four games in regulation.

The Bruins, who have won five of their past six, will be ready for a team with everything to lose.

"A team that's a desperate team is always a challenge," Bruins forward Chris Kelly said after the morning skate. "And we know that they're going to play desperate hockey. Whenever you lose four games in a row, and the expectations are extremely high like they are for that team, they're going to come out with their best game and we need to be ready for that."

The Canucks did not hold a morning skate. They flew in late Monday after a 2-0 road loss to the Detroit Red Wings.

Here are the projected lineups for both teams:

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Posted On Thursday, 01.30.2014 / 1:06 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Canadiens give Budaj start against potent Bruins

BOSTON -- The Boston Bruins have scored six goals in each of their past three games.

Boston's recent offensive hot streak, however, hasn't changed the Montreal Canadiens' plans to start backup goaltender Peter Budaj against the Bruins at TD Garden on Thursday (7 p.m. ET, NHLN-US).

Carey Price started the previous eight games and Budaj has made two relief appearances since his last start Jan. 8.

"We prepare a schedule monthly, and even after that we go week-to-week, and me and Stephane [Waite, goaltending coach] we talk about it because we need to maintain the energy, physically and mentally, to Carey Price," Canadiens coach Michel Therrien said after his team's morning skate. "And we've got four games this week in six days, so this is important for us to make sure Carey is sharp and make sure he's sharp physically, mentally. And Carey played a lot of hockey lately so we decided to go with Peter."


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Posted On Tuesday, 01.28.2014 / 12:55 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Panthers confident in abilities on road, coming back

BOSTON -- Florida Panthers interim coach Peter Horachek thinks when his team went on the road and won three straight games against the Montreal Canadiens, Toronto Maple Leafs and Ottawa Senators in December, the Panthers gained the confidence they could prevail away from home against some of the better teams in the NHL.

That confidence has carried the Panthers on their current three-game road winning streak, which continued with a comeback against the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday. The Panthers will need all their confidence and more Tuesday when they visit the Boston Bruins, who are 19-5-2 at TD Garden this season.

"We know what we have to [do] to win, and no matter what building we're in we're trying to catch up to everybody and we're trying to make up some ground and trying to stay relevant to that last [Stanley Cup Playoff] spot," Horachek said after the Panthers' morning skate. "So you have to learn how to win on the road and be successful on the road and I think we've had some success. … That's important for us. We have to learn to play in those situations, in hard buildings, in tough buildings, and those got us going."

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Posted On Tuesday, 01.14.2014 / 12:58 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Bruins' Thornton excited for first game back in Boston

BOSTON -- The Boston Bruins' home game against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday will be more than just a homecoming for the team after a three-game California road trip.

It'll mark the first home game for forward Shawn Thornton, who returned from his 15-game suspension Saturday in the Bruins' lone win of their trip, a 1-0 victory against the San Jose Sharks.

Thornton's previous game was Dec. 7 when he was assessed a match penalty for an incident with the Pittsburgh Penguins' Brooks Orpik. A popular player during his seven seasons with the Bruins, Thornton should expect a warm welcome from the Boston fans.

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Quote of the Day

We think that Randy is a very good coach. Our players think that Randy is a very good coach. We think that he's going to get the most out of this group. With the addition of the two assistants, a bit of a different dynamic, we're very comfortable that this is a quality coaching staff that's going to maximize the potential of this team.

— Maple Leafs GM Dave Nonis on head coach Randy Carlyle and his staff