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Bruins Week Ahead 3.25 - 4.1

by Staff Writer / Boston Bruins
THIS WEEK’S NEWS, NOTES AND NUMBERS:


B’S/HABS SETS REGULAR SEASON RATINGS RECORD: Thursday night's 7-0 Bruins win over the Canadiens garnered a 6.6 household rating on NESN according to Nielsen, which is the highest rated regular season game in the network's 27 year history covering the Bruins. NESN's previous regular season ratings record was a 6.2 household rating for the March 18, 2010 game when the Bruins played the Pittsburgh Penguins at TD Garden.

PLAYOFF TIX GO ON SALE WEDNESDAY: The Boston Bruins announced Friday that tickets for the club’s first three home playoff games of the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs will go on sale at 11:00 a.m. ET on Wednesday, March 30.

Tickets will be available for purchase at the TD Garden Box Office, on www.bostonbruins.com and via Ticketmaster.   

ASSIST CHANGE: Please note a scoring change from last night… Mark Recchi’s assist on Boston’s sixth goal is now credited to Patrice Bergeron. Recchi remains in 13th place on the NHL’s all-time points list with 1,530. With his next point he will tie Paul Coffey for 12th all-time.

STRETCH RUN: Including their game against the Rangers Saturday afternoon (1:00 p.m., TV: NESN, RADIO: 98.5 The Sports Hub) the Bruins have nine regular season games remaining on their 2010-11 docket. They currently lead the Northeast Division with 92 points, five clear of second place Montreal with the Bruins holding two games in hand over their rivals. This week the Bruins will face off against the Rangers, Flyers, Blackhawks and Maple Leafs.

Here’s a breakdown of their remaining opponents:
9: total games remaining in B’s regular season
6: home games
3: road games
4: games against teams currently in playoff position
1: game vs. Division leader (Philadelphia on 3/27)

THIS WEEK’S OPPONENTS: First up this week for the Bruins will be the New York Rangers, who will visit the TD Garden on Saturday afternoon (1:00 p.m., TV: NESN, RADIO: 98.5 The Sports Hub). The Rangers are currently in seventh place in the Eastern Conference, only two points behind Montreal. The B’s have more wins against the Rangers (283 all-time) than any other team in the NHL. New York is paced offensively by Brandon Dubinsky, who was 22 goals and 29 assists for 51 points.

After playing the Rangers, the Bruins will travel to Philadelphia for a Sunday showdown with the Eastern Conference-leading Flyers (7:00 p.m., TV: NESN, RADIO: 98.5 The Sports Hub). The Flyers have 98 points on the season, and have already clinched a playoff berth. Philly has four players that have topped the 60-point mark on the season– Claude Giroux (68), Jeff Carter (62), Mike Richards (61) and Danny Briere (60).

From Philly, the Bruins will head back to Boston for their first and only 2010-11 meeting with the Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday night (7:30 p.m., TV: VERSUS, RADIO: 98.5 The Sports Hub). The Blackhawks top line of Patrick Sharp, Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane have combined for 89 goals and 118 assists for 207 points this season. Chicago sits in seventh place in the crowded Western Conference playoff picture with 88 points, only two points clear of ninth place Dallas and three points clear of tenth place Calgary.

On Thursday night the Bruins will play the Toronto Maple Leafs for the sixth and final time this season (7:00 p.m., TV: NESN, RADIO: 98.5 The Sports Hub). Toronto has taken three of five from Boston this season, and they currently sit tied for ninth place in the Eastern Conference (with Carolina) with 78 points, three points shy of eighth place Buffalo. Even though he was acquired by the B’s from Toronto back on February 18, Tomas Kaberle is still fifth on the Maple Leafs in points, as he had 3-35=38 totals at the time of the trade. Former Bruin Phil Kessel has 29-27=56 totals this season for the Maple Leafs.

FIGHT CLUB: Thursday night marked the eighth time this season that a Bruin fought and scored a goal in the same game. Gregory Campbell had two goals and a second period bout with Paul Mara. Along with Campbell, Shawn Thornton (4 times), Milan Lucic (2 times) and Nathan Horton (once) have scored and fought in a single game. The Bruins are 8-0-0 when any player fights and scores in the same game, and they are currently 24-11-6 when they get in a fight. Of the Bruins’ 68 fights this season (3rd in the NHL), 25 have come against teams in the Northeast Division.  

B’S SIGN WARSOFSKY: Peter Chiarelli announced Thursday that the club has agreed to terms with Boston University junior David Warsofsky to an entry-level contract. The Marshfield, MA native will report to Providence. In his three-year career as a Terrier, Warsofsky had 22 goals and 46 assists for 68 points in 113 games. His rights were acquired by the Bruins on June 26, 2010 from the St. Louis Blues in exchange for Vladimir Sobotka.

THE CAPTAIN: In his last seven games dating back to the March 8 game in Montreal, Zdeno Chara has two goals and eight assists for 10 points. He notched back-to-back three-point nights against the Devils on Tuesday night (1-2=3) and the Canadiens (0-3-3) on Thursday night.  

SELECT COACHING COMPANY: After beating the New Jersey Devils 4-1 on Tuesday night, the Bruins have won 40 games for the 26th time in franchise history. Claude Julien joins Don Cherry and Gerry Cheevers as the only B’s coaches with at least three 40-plus win seasons in their coaching tenures. The Bruins have won at least 39 games in each of their four seasons under Julien, and have had an above-.500 point percentage in all four seasons under his leadership. Julien, Cherry and Cheevers are the only Bruins coaches with an above-.500 point percentage in each of their first four seasons with Boston. The Bruins are 174-100-45 under Julien.

KABERLE, HORTON DO IT AGAIN: Tomas Kaberle notched his 40th assist of the season on Tuesday night against New Jersey. This is the fifth time in the past six seasons that the Czech defenseman has reached the 40-assist plateau. Nathan Horton has 22 goals on the season and has now hit for 20+ goals in six straight seasons.

HONORING A BROADCASTING LEGEND: The B’s will pay tribute to Bruins legendary radio personality Bob Wilson on Saturday, March 26 during the Bruins/Rangers game at the TD Garden. At 11:30 a.m., the Bruins will dedicate their home radio broadcast booth to Wilson by renaming it the "Bob Wilson Radio Booth." The Bruins will also install a silver microphone encased in a black and gold frame on the TD Garden’s level 9 façade beneath the home radio broadcast booth, which will be permanently displayed. Wilson recently celebrated his 82nd birthday on Wednesday, March 9.

CUTS FOR A CAUSE: Shawn Thornton and 14 of his teammates will be shaving their heads for charity on Thursday, April 7 as part of the 4th annual Cuts for a Cause event. The event is sold out but fans can still bid on the opportunity to shave the B’s players’ heads beginning Monday, March 21 on 985thesportshub.com.

THE STAT OF THE WEEK, COURTESY OF THE BRUINS WEEK AHEAD STAT MACHINE: The Bruins have scored 11 unanswered goals since the Devils opened the scoring in Boston's 4-1 win on Tuesday. It is the second time this season that the Bruins have gone on an 11-goal run (Oct. 23-Nov. 3) with the last time they scored 12-or-more straight goals a 14-goal run from Dec. 20-26, 1987.

65 AND COUNTING… After Thursday’s capacity crowd at the Garden, the Bruins have now sold out 65 straight games (regular season and postseason, does not include Winter Classic at Fenway or 2010 Premiere Game in Prague). The Bruins sold out every regular and postseason game during the 2010 calendar year, the first time the organization has done so since the 1972 calendar year.

1ST GOAL POOL ON TWITTER: Congrats to the following followers of @NHLBruins who correctly guessed Shawn Thornton as the Bruins first goal scorer during the Bruins/Devils game on Tuesday: @bruins22, @paul_manley, @MattyShays.

Thornton scored the first Bruins goal at 15:39 of the first period on Tuesday.

Also, here are those who correctly guessed Johnny Boychuk as the Bruins first goal scorer during the Bruins/Canadiens game on Thursday: @Gordie78, @ChrisLachance21.

Boychuk scored the first Bruins goal at 1:01 of the first period on Thursday.

The Bruins first goal pool takes place on Twitter just before the puck drop every Bruins home game.

BOSTON MEDIA TWEET OF THE WEEK: ESPNBoston.com’s Joe MacDonald on Thursday, March 24 regarding the French speaking media and fans in the Garden for the Boston/Montreal game: @ESPNJoeyMac “Wish I had learned French. The one time I attempted to speak it, I told former Bruin Benoit Hogue to kiss my cheek and not my backside.”

TWEET OF THE WEEK LEADERBOARD: Here are the current standings on the Tweet of the Week Leaderboard through tweets on March 24:

@HackswithHaggs: 3
@DJBean: 2
@TheBruinsBlog: 2
@ESPNJoeyMac: 2
@douglasflynn: 1
@kluedeke29: 1
@MurphysLaw74: 1
@NaokoFunayama: 1

BRUINS PROSPECT REPORT: The Bruins Communications Staff has created the Boston Bruins Prospect Report, which will be emailed out every two weeks. The Report will contain updated statistical information, news and notes on all players in the Bruins system, as well as a “Prospect Spotlight” section that will highlight two players in a feature article format. The latest report was sent on March 15 and featured P-Bruins goaltender Anton Khudobin and Kingston Frontenacs (OHL) forward Ryan Spooner. The next will be sent April 1.

MEDIA INFO: Media and fans can call 617.624.1910 for the latest updates to the Bruins practice and game schedule.  

Follow the Bruins on Twitter @NHLBruins

Become a Fan of the Bruins on Facebook: www.facebook.com/NHLBruins

AROUND TOWN

WHAT: FOURTH ANNUAL CUTS FOR A CAUSE BIDDING

The bidding to shave the head of one of the 15 participating Bruins players began on Monday, March 21 at 9:00 a.m. The 15 members of the 2010-11 Bruins roster participating in the fourth annual “Cuts for a Cause” event on April 7 include Shawn Thornton, Patrice Bergeron, Zdeno Chara, Andrew Ference, Nathan Horton, Steve Kampfer, Chris Kelly, David Krejci, Milan Lucic, Brad Marchand, Adam McQuaid, Daniel Paille, Rich Peverley, Tyler Seguin and Dennis Seidenberg. Auction winners will also receive admission to the VIP session from 2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. where they can mingle with team, receive two drink tickets and a special Bruins gift bag that includes autographed Bruins memorabilia. To bid, Bruins fans can email bids@985thesportshub.com.

WHEN: Monday, March 21 beginning at 9:00 a.m.

WHERE: Bids can be placed at bids@985thesportshub.com

BRUINS PARTICIPATING: Shawn Thornton, Patrice Bergeron, Zdeno Chara, Andrew Ference, Nathan Horton, Steve Kampfer, Chris Kelly, David Krejci, Milan Lucic, Brad Marchand, Adam McQuaid, Daniel Paille, Rich Peverley, Tyler Seguin and Dennis Seidenberg

WHAT: SKATE WITH THE ICE GIRLS

The Boston Bruins Ice Girls will be collecting dresses for the Belle of the Ball program at their “Skate with the Ice Girls” free open skate program on Sunday, March 27. Bruins Ice Girls will be skating with kids of all ages, taking pictures and signing autographs. In addition, fans will have the opportunity to win player-autographed memorabilia.

WHEN: Sunday, March 27 from 2:40 p.m. – 4:10 p.m.

WHERE: Wallace Civic Center, 1000 John Fitch Highway, Fitchburg, MA 01420

BRUINS PARTICIPATING: Boston Bruins Ice Girls

WHAT: BOSTON BRUINS FOUNDATION MARATHON TEAM FUNDRAISER

The Boston Bruins Marathon Team will participate in the 115th Boston Marathon to raise money for the Boston Bruins Foundation. Each member of the Boston Bruins Marathon Team is required to raise a minimum of $3,500, which will support children's athletic programs, academics, health and community outreach programs. The Boston Bruins Foundation hopes to raise over $52,500 through this initiative. In an effort to help the Boston Bruins Marathon Team achieve their fundraising goals, the Boston Bruins Foundation will host a fundraiser on Sunday, March 27 at McGreevy’s (911 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02115) from 6:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. Bruins fans are invited to watch as the Bruins take on the Philadelphia Flyers. There will be a $10.00 entrance fee, which will benefit the Boston Bruins Marathon team.

WHEN: Sunday, March 27 from 6:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.

WHERE: McGreevy’s, 911 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02115

WHAT: JUMP ROPE FOR HEART SCHOOL VISIT

Bruins Strength and Conditioning Coach John Whitesides will be speaking to students at Douglas McCarther School about the importance of exercise and nutrition as part of the Jump Rope for Heart program. Coach Whitesides will discuss what the Boston Bruins players do to stay healthy and how it is important for everyone to lead a healthy lifestyle. Coach Whitesides will be joined by Bruins mascot Blades and the Bruins Ice Girls during a school assembly.

WHEN: Wednesday, March 30 from 2:00 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.

WHERE: Douglas McCarther School, 494 Lincoln Street, Waltham, MA 02451

BRUINS PARTICIPATING: Bruins Strength and Conditioning Coach John Whitesides, Boston Bruins mascot, Blades and the Boston Bruins Ice Girls

WHAT: SAMUEL ADAMS “BRU FEST”

On Thursday, March 31, the Boston Bruins will hold their third “Bru Fest” of the 2010-11 season presented by Boston’s own Samuel Adams brewery in the East Lot of the TD Garden (100 Legends Way, Boston, MA 02114). The outdoor festivities run from 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. with the last call at 6:15 p.m. The event is free and open to Bruins fans ages 21 and over with a ticket to the Bruins/Toronto game. Samuel Adams will be featuring a selection of their most popular products. Space for the event will be limited and fans are encouraged to arrive early. The final Bru Fest of the season will be on April 6, 2011.

WHEN: Thursday, March 31 from 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. with the last call at 6:15 p.m.

WHERE: East Lot of the TD Garden, 100 Legends Way, Boston, MA 02114

BRUINS PARTICIPATING: Boston Bruins mascot, Blades and the Boston Bruins Ice Girls

WHAT: SHOE SORTING WITH THE BRUINS WIVES AND GIRLFRIENDS

The Boston Bruins wives and girlfriends will be sorting shoes for the Children’s Trust Fund (CTF) as part of their annual Step Up for Prevention campaign.  The CTF leads statewide efforts to keep children safe from abuse and neglect by strengthening families. The ladies will be sorting shoes that will be distributed to families who participate in CTF funded programs across the state of Massachusetts.

WHEN: Friday, April 1 from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

WHERE: Children’s Trust Fund, 55 Court St, 4th floor, Boston, MA 02108-2104

BRUINS PARTICIPATING: Sheena Burletoff, Brittany Carnegie, Kim Lazur and Jasmiina Nikkila

UPCOMING PRACTICE SCHEDULE AND MEDIA AVAILABILITY
-(Ristuccia Arena, 190 Main Street, Wilmington, MA 01887) (TD Garden, 100 Legends Way, Boston, MA 02114)
-Schedule is subject to change. Please check the Bruins Media Website for the latest updates.
-All times are local

Saturday, March 26 (Boston, MA/Philadelphia, PA)
-No Morning Skate scheduled
-Players available on request basis beginning at approximately 10:20 a.m.
-Claude Julien available at 11:50 a.m.
-Boston Bruins vs. New York Rangers, TD Garden, 1:00 p.m.
-Game Broadcast Info: TV: NESN, RADIO: 98.5 The Sports Hub

-Travel to Philadelphia, PA
Sunday, March 27 (Philadelphia, PA/Boston, MA)
-Morning Skate, Wells Fargo Center, 11:30 a.m.
-Players available after morning skate
-Claude Julien available after players
-Boston Bruins vs. Philadelphia Flyers, Wells Fargo Center, 7:00 p.m. (3601 South Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19148)
-Game Broadcast Info: TV: NESN, RADIO: 98.5 The Sports Hub
-Travel to Boston, MA

Monday, March 28 (Wilmington, MA)
-Practice, Ristuccia Arena, 12:30 p.m.
-Players available after practice
-Claude Julien available after players

Tuesday, March 29 (Boston, MA)
-Morning Skate, TD Garden, 10:30 a.m.
-Players available after morning skate
-Claude Julien available after players
-Boston Bruins vs. Chicago Blackhawks, TD Garden, 7:30 p.m.
-Game Broadcast Info: TV: VERSUS, RADIO: 98.5 The Sports Hub

Wednesday, March 30 (Wilmington, MA)
-Practice, Ristuccia Arena, 11:30 a.m.
-Players available after practice
-Claude Julien available after players
Thursday, March 31 (Boston, MA)
-Morning Skate, TD Garden, 10:30 a.m.
-Players available after morning skate
-Claude Julien available after players
-Boston Bruins vs. Toronto Maple Leafs, TD Garden, 7:00 p.m.
-Game Broadcast Info: TV: NESN, RADIO: 98.5 The Sports Hub

Friday, April 1 (Wilmington, MA)
-Practice, Ristuccia Arena, 11:30 a.m.
-Players available after practice
-Claude Julien available after players

BRUINS ON THE AIRWAVES:
“THE AT&T HOCKEY SHOW”: The Hockey Show is back for year two on 98.5 The Sports Hub. Listen in every Wednesday (excluding gamedays) from 6-7 p.m. as host Damon Amendolara and the B’s radio team of Dave Goucher and Bob Beers take calls from fans, interview players and talk all things Bruins.  

WEEKLY RADIO SPOTS:
Tune in to the following local stations for weekly segments with Bruins personnel:

Tuesdays
101.7 FM WFNX
9:10 a.m. Shane Hnidy with the FNX Breakfast Show
98.5 The Sports Hub
4:20 p.m. Cam Neely with “Felger and Massarotti”

Wednesdays
98.5 The Sports Hub
8:20 a.m. Peter Chiarelli with “Toucher and Rich”
98.5 The Sports Hub
Patrice Bergeron with “Gresh and Zolak” (rotating times between 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.)

Thursdays
98.5 The Sports Hub
8:20 a.m. Shawn Thornton with “Toucher and Rich”
100.7 FM WZLX
8:25 a.m. Brad Marchand with “Karlson and McKenzie”
107.3 FM WAAF
8:30 a.m. Cam Neely with “The Hill-Man Morning Show”

Fridays
107.7 FM The Pulse (New Hampshire)
4:30 p.m. Johnny Boychuk on “New Hampshire Today with Jack Heath”

BRUINS STATISTICAL LEADERS (as of Friday, March 25)

Goals
1. M. Lucic, 30
T2. P. Bergeron, 22
T2. N. Horton, 22
4. B. Marchand, 19
5. M. Ryder, 17

Assists
1. D. Krejci, 47
2. M. Recchi, 33
3. P. Bergeron, 31
4. Z. Chara, 29
5. M. Lucic, 28

Points
1. D. Krejci, 59
2. M. Lucic, 58
3. P. Bergeron, 53
4. N. Horton, 48
5. M. Recchi, 46

Plus/Minus
T1. M. Lucic, +29
T1. A. McQuaid, +29
T1. N. Horton, +29
4. Z. Chara, +28
5. D. Krejci, +26

Penalty Minutes
1. S. Thornton, 122
2. M. Lucic, 106
3. A. McQuaid, 96
4. G. Campbell, 86
5. Z. Chara, 84

2010-11 Bruins “Stars”
Tim Thomas, First Star of the Week, Week ending October 31
Tim Thomas, Second Star of the Month, October
Patrice Bergeron, Second Star of the Week, Week ending January 16
Tim Thomas, NHL All-Star
Zdeno Chara, NHL All-Star, Hardest Shot record 105.9 MPH in 2011 NHL SuperSkills Competition
Tyler Seguin, One of 12 NHL rookies selected to participate in All-Star festivities
Tim Thomas, First Star of the Week, Week ending January 23
Patrice Bergeron, First Star of the Month, January
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