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Boston Bruins Week Ahead, 2/21- 2/27

by Staff Writer / Boston Bruins
This edition of the Week Ahead comes to you from Sunrise, Florida...


ROAD TRIP WRAPS UP; SIX-GAME HOMESTAND FOLLOWS
The Bruins conclude their five-game road trip this weekend with tilts against the Panthers in Florida on Saturday, February 21 and the Lightning in Tampa Bay on Sunday, February 22. A six-game homestand awaits when the Bruins return to Boston, which starts on Tuesday, February 26 against the Panthers and ends on Saturday, March 7 against the Blackhawks.

“RINKSIDE CHATS” RETURN; KREJCI UP THIS WEEK
BostonBruins.com’s online interactive feature “Rinkside Chats,” presented by Covidien, have returned with Blake Wheeler joining fans for an hour-long online chat on February 11. The Rinkside Chats will run every other Wednesday from 3-4 p.m. ET for the remainder of the season on BostonBruins.com. David Krejci is the next guest lined up as he will participate on Wednesday, February 25.

RINKSIDE CHAT RUNDOWN:
February 11: Blake Wheeler (chat transcript)
February 25: David Krejci, 3:00 p.m.

KING CLAUDE
During the Bruins off-day on Wednesday in Florida, 12 members of the Bruins staff including Head Coach Claude Julien, Zdeno Chara, Patrice Bergeron, Manny Fernandez, Tim Thomas, Matt Hunwick, Martins Karsums and Vladimir Sobotka joined New Moon Sportfishing for a deep-sea fishing trip off the shores of Miami. Julien won the friendly intersquad competition by reeling in the biggest fish of the day, a 50-inch Kingfish.

“BRU FEST” DATES SET
On Thursday, March 19 and Tuesday, March 31 the Boston Bruins will hold their third and fourth Bru Fest events of the 2008-09 season sponsored by Boston’s own Samuel Adams brewery.

The outdoor festivities will start at 5:00 p.m. and conclude at 7:00 p.m. (with last call at 6:45 p.m.) in the West Plaza outside of the TD Banknorth Garden. Tickets to Bru Fest can be purchased online at bostonbruins.com and cost $45.00. The $45.00 covers admission to the Bru Fest party, a voucher for one free beer or free soda, discounted concessions and a ticket to that evening’s Bruins home game. The B’s take on the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday, March 19, at 7:00 p.m. ET and the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday, March 31 at 7:00 p.m. ET.

THE STAT OF THE WEEK, COURTESY OF THE BOSTON BRUINS WEEK AHEAD STAT MACHINE…
With their 5-1 win over the Hurricanes in Carolina on Tuesday, the Bruins registered their 21st road win of the season in their 31st road game. The all-time club record for road wins in a season is 26, set during the 1971-72 season, meaning the Bruins will need six wins in their last 10 road games to break the record.

BRUINS UPCOMING GAME AND PRACTICE SCHEDULE
(PLEASE CALL 617.624.1910 FOR THE LATEST UPDATES TO THE SCHEDULE)


Saturday, February 21 (Sunrise, FL)
-Pregame skate at Bell Atlantic Center 11:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. ET
-Game vs. Florida Panthers 7:00 p.m. ET (TV: NESN, FS-F; RADIO: WBZ 1030 AM)
-Travel to Tampa, FL

Sunday, February 22 (Tampa, FL)
-Ice available at St. Pete Times Forum 8:30 - 9:30 a.m. ET
-Game vs. Tampa Bay Lightning 5:00 p.m. ET (TV: NESN, SUN; RADIO: WBZ 1030 AM)
-Travel to Boston

Monday, February 23 (Wilmington, MA)
-Practice at Ristuccia Arena 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. ET

Tuesday, February 24 (Boston, MA)
-Pregame skate at TD Banknorth Garden 10:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. ET
Please note that this practice is not open to the public.
-Game vs. Florida Panthers 7:00 p.m. ET (TV: FS-F, NESN; RADIO: WBZ 1030 AM)

Wednesday, February 25 (Wilmington, MA)
-Practice at Ristuccia Arena 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. ET

Thursday, February 26 (Boston, MA)
-Pregame skate at TD Banknorth Garden 10:30 a.m - 11:00 a.m. ET
Please note this practice is not open to the public.
-Game vs. Anaheim Ducks 7:00 p.m. ET (TV: NESN; RADIO: WBZ 1030 AM)

Friday, February 27 (Wilmington, MA)
-Practice at Ristuccia Arena 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. ET

AROUND TOWN
What: Skate With The Ice Girls
-The Boston Bruins Ice Girls and the Boston Bruins mascot, Blades will be special guests at the public skating session in Fall River, MA
-All skaters will have a chance to skate with the girls, meet Blades and enter to win Bruins team autographed memorabilia
-Future appearances can be found at www.bostonbruins.com
When: Sunday, February 22, from 2:00 p.m. - 3:50 p.m.
Where: Driscoll Arena, 272 Ellsbree Street, Fall River, MA 02720
Bruins Participating: Boston Bruins Ice Girls and Boston Bruins mascot, Blades

What: Bruins Movie Poster Series
-The first 5,000 fans attending the Bruins/Panthers game will receive the fifth of the seven-part commemorative Bruins movie poster series
-The posters in the series have featured Michael Ryder as “Ghost Ryder,” Zdeno Chara as “Iron Defenseman,” Patrice Bergeron as “Lord of the Rink” and Marc Savard as “Lethal Weapon 91”
When: Tuesday, February 24, beginning at 6:00 p.m.
Where: TD Banknorth Garden, 100 Legends Way, Boston, MA 02114
-At each of the entrance turnstiles
-Bruins Participating: Boston Bruins Ice Girls and Boston Bruins Mascot, Blades

What: PJ Axelsson visit to Cradles to Crayons Warehouse
-Boston Bruins forward P.J. Axelsson and his wife Siw will be visiting the Cradles to Crayons warehouse in Quincy to help sort pajamas donated for the second annual P.J.’s Pajama Drive
-When: Wednesday, February 25, from 3:30 p.m.- 4:30 p.m.
-Where: Cradles to Crayons Warehouse, 82 Myrtle Street, Quincy, MA 02171
Bruins Participating: Boston Bruins forward P.J. and his wife Siw Axelsson

What: Second Annual P.J.’s Pajama Drive in-game pajama collection
-The Boston Bruins are collecting new, unused pajamas as a part of the second annual P.J.’s Pajama Drive to benefit Cradles to Crayons
-Fans choosing to participate will receive a raffle ticket for each donation
-When: Saturday, February 28, from 12:00 p.m. until the end of game
-Where: TD Banknorth Garden, 100 Legends Way, Boston, MA 02114
-At each of the entrance turnstiles
-Bruins Participating: Boston Bruins wives and girlfriends, Boston Bruins Ice Girls and Boston Bruins Mascot, Blades

MEDIA
THE INSTIGATORS
Every Thursday at 6:00 p.m. and 10:30 p.m., the gloves come off on NESN, as Mike Milbury, Andy Brickley, and Jack Edwards debate the hottest and most controversial issues in hockey on The Instigators.

THE BUZZ
Check out The Buzz this week for a look back at former Bruin Glen Wesley’s retirement ceremony in Carolina, highlights from the Bruins/Minnesota North Stars infamous brawl during a game that featured 406 penalty minutes and a feature on Tim Thomas and his offseason workouts involving yoga.

BUZZ AIRTIMES THIS WEEK:
2/21 6:00/10:30PM
2/22 12:30PM
2/23 5:00PM
2/24 10:30PM
2/26 11:30PM

BRUINS RADIO APPEARANCES
Check the following radio stations for exclusive live interviews with Bruins players every week...
Tuesday mornings at 7:20: Andrew Ference on WFNX 101.7 FM
Wednesday mornings at 8:00: Aaron Ward on WBCN 104.1 FM
Wednesday mornings at 8:20: Marc Savard on WZLX 100.7 FM

TICKET INFO
STUDENT NIGHTS: Every Bruins home game on Monday through Thursday is “Student Night” at the Garden, where students can purchase discounted tickets for $23.50. The Bruins Student Sections are in sections 320 and 321, rows 3-15.

LEADERS AND STATS
BRUINS ON THE NHL LEADERBOARD (AS OF FEBRUARY 20)
-The Bruins lead the entire NHL in wins (40), points (88), and goal differential (+66).
-The Bruins are first in the NHL in goals against (131) and second in the NHL in goals for (197).
-The Bruins own the NHL’s fifth ranked power play overall (22.8%).
-Marc Savard is tied for ninth in the league in points with 63 (E. Malkin 84).
-Dennis Wideman is tied for seventh in the NHL in points scored by a defenseman with 39 (M. Green 51).
-Michael Ryder is tied for fifth in game winning goals with 7 (P. Marleau, A. Ovechkin 9).
-P.J. Axelsson is tied for fifth in shootout game deciding goals with 2 (A. Kotalik 4).
-Blake Wheeler leads the NHL +/- ranking with a +33 rating, David Krejci is tied for second with +32, Dennis Wideman is tied for fifth with +28, Marc Savard is tied for ninth with +25, and Zdeno Chara and Michael Ryder are tied for eleventh with a +24.
-Milan Lucic is tied for fifth in the NHL in hits with 188 (C. Clutterbuck 224) and is ranked eighth in shooting percentage (18.6 %).
-Blake Wheeler leads the entire NHL, including the rookies, plus/minus ranking with a +33. He is third in goals scored by a rookie with 17 (B. Ryan 19), is fourth in assists by a rookie with 18 (K. Versteeg 26) and is tied for third among rookies in points with 35 (K. Versteeg 42).
-Tim Thomas ranks first in both Save Percentage (.932) and Goals Against Average (2.09).
-Manny Fernandez ranks third in both Save Percentage (.925) and Goals Against Average (2.15).

HARDWARE
Tim Thomas- Second Star, Week ending November 2
Marc Savard- First Star, Week ending November 23
Phil Kessel- First Star, Week ending December 14
Manny Fernandez/Tim Thomas- First Star, Month of December
Zdeno Chara, Marc Savard, Tim Thomas- Eastern Conference All-Stars
Milan Lucic, Blake Wheeler- NHL YoungStars participants
Claude Julien- Eastern Conference All-Star head coach
Blake Wheeler- NHL YoungStars Game Most Valuable Player
Zdeno Chara- NHL’s Hardest Shot Competition winner (105.4 MPH, NHL record)

BRUINS REGULAR SEASON LEADERS (AS OF FEBRUARY 20)
Goals
1. P. Kessel    24
2. M. Savard    21
3. D. Krejci    20
4. M. Ryder 19
5. B. Wheeler   17

Assists
1. M. Savard    42
2. D. Krejci    39
3. D. Wideman   27
4. Z. Chara 21
5. P. Kessel    20

Points
1. M. Savard    63
2. D. Krejci    59
3. P. Kessel    44
4. D. Wideman   39
5. M. Ryder 36

Plus/Minus
1. B. Wheeler   +33
2. D. Krejci    +32
3. D. Wideman   +28
4. M. Savard    +25
t5. Z. Chara    +24
t5. M. Ryder    +24

Penalty Minutes
1. S. Thornton  98
2. M. Lucic 86
3. Z. Chara 62
4. M. Stuart    58
5. M. Savard    54

MEDIA AND FAN INFORMATION LINE
Call 617.624.1910 for the latest updates to the Bruins practice schedule.
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