|Buffalo Sabres' Cody McCormick, right, fights with Boston Bruins' Zdeno Chara (33) of Slovakia during the third period of a first-round NHL playoff hockey game in Buffalo, N.Y., Friday, April 23, 2010. The Sabres won 4-1. (AP Photo/ Dean Duprey) |
Most of the Boston Bruins had the day off, but there was plenty to talk about as the Black & Gold "enjoyed" a lazy Saturday afternoon.
First, Zdeno Chara
dodged a Chara sized bullet when the league decided to let him play in Game 6.
"The National Hockey League announced today that it has rescinded the automatic one-game suspension for Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara
," explained NHL.com. "At the end of the third period, Chara was assessed a minor penalty for instigating, a major for fighting and a game misconduct under Rule 47.12, resulting in an automatic one game suspension, pending review.
"The League has reviewed the incident and rescinded the automatic suspension under Rule 47.22, which states: 'the suspension shall be served unless, upon review of the incident, the Director of Hockey Operations, at his discretion, deems the incident is not related to the score, previous incidents in the game or prior games, retaliatory in nature, ‘message sending,' etc.'"
Bruins head coach Claude Julien, no doubt remembering several decisions that have not turned in favor of the Hub of Hockey was satisfied with the League's decision.
"Well, I think when you look at what happened and how it was...to us, it didn’t make much sense," said the B's head coach. "Peter [Chiarelli] put in a request to the league to get the instigator [removed], which after review, they did.
"To me it was just common sense."
Julien admitted to a sense of relief.
"Well, it is," said Julien. "To me, to be honest with you, I wasn’t even worried.
"I couldn’t see that happening and it didn’t take them long to rescind that stuff and it just didn’t make any sense.
"A guy got slashed behind the leg with a two-hander and turns around and still has a glove on, takes a pop and three guy s jump him," continued Julien. "Where does all this stuff come from? I don’t know.
"It’s just common sense and the league looked at it and they felt that he didn’t deserve it and they took care of it."No practice...
There was not much practice going on Saturday, but Bruins Andrew Ference
, Matt Hunwick, Johnny Boychuk
, Vladimir Sobotka and Marc Savard
all talked to the media.
When asked about how the Bruins will react to the toughness and desperation the Sabres showed in their win on Friday, Boychuk was very straightforward.
“We just got to take it and come to play next game and not worry about what happened last game because, you know, it’s a new day and a new game and we want to get it done,” he said.
Savard was the only B to take the ice this morning. He skated with strength and conditioning coach John Whitesides, taking contact along the boards and working on game situations.
“I kind of did some shift things,” Savard said of the ice-time. “Where I was out there for 40 seconds going hard everywhere and then coming off and sitting on the bench for, you know, two minutes or whatever, and going back out there.
“I did a couple – six or seven of those, so it felt [like a] game situation. I recovered pretty good. Obviously, towards the end, I faded a bit, but in the same sense, you know, I’m feeling great.”
Savard is excited that he is progressing, but he knows the coaching staff and trainers will not be making any rash decisions about his recovery time.
“I think it just comes down to the training staff and Claude [Julien] and then we’ll go from there,” he said.
But Coach Julien believes it's too early to talk about.
"Still skating, guys," was his report on his superstar. "I know you guys are itching to find out more, but there is nothing more than he has got to keep working out and he has to go through the protocol and everything else medically.
"We are doing everything that we can from our end of it and we will wait and see when he is 100% cleared and it could happen soon, it could happen much later."
So, when asked about wanting to suit up for the Buffalo series, Savard was cautious.
“Every player wants to play and I think that I’m no different,” he said. “I’m excited, and obviously the adrenaline’s pumping.
"Even today, I couldn’t wait to get out there even though I was going out alone, just to get out there and keep challenging myself and like I said, we’ll see what happens.”Game 7 Mentality, One Game Early
|Boston Bruins coach Claude Julien talks to players during hockey practice in Buffalo, N.Y., Friday, April 16, 2010. (AP Photo/David Duprey) |
Coach Julien said that the Bruins must refocus for Monday's Game 6.
"It’s a must win just like yesterday was," said Julien. "We probably didn’t play our best hockey, obviously and it’s up to us to bounce back and throughout the course of the last month or so we have been playing pretty good hockey.
"You hope that it is just a little glitch and we will get back to our type of game tomorrow night.
"You want to clinch the series. You have to take advantage of it when it is there for you and that is the next game."
But as many of the players said before and after Friday's game, Coach Julien repeated that the B's can't keep spotting the Sabres goals at the start of the game.
"I didn’t really like that first goal last night," said Julien. "It was one of those kind of goals that you don’t like to see to start a game.
"We had our chances early and I think if we would have capitalized...it might be a different game."Caryn Switaj co-authored this report.