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B's Back to Practice

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
BOSTON -- After today's practice, Boston Bruins Head Coach Claude Julien, asked about his club's recent success, said, "There's always something you can do better.

"We try to correct things after every game," added Julien. "We look at game tapes and certain areas and last game the one thing I thought we could've been better at was those 'outnumbered' situations. We didn't get any shots off those...and instead of forcing the play maybe a shot's a better idea.

"Sometimes we have a tendency to get a little too cute."

There was nothing cute about today's practice.

Instead of seeing Tuukka Rask and Tim Thomas in goal to start the session, temporary foam boards were stacked in front of each net to force the B's to take shots -- lots of them.

The lesson wasn't lost on the players.

"Today we worked a little bit on odd-man rushes," explained Dan Paille. "Even though we’ve had a good record this month, we haven’t really capitalized on the two-on-one’s, three-on-one’s - I think we had three last game and we didn’t get a shot.

"I think those are key...and one thing for us is to move the puck quick because Toronto is going to be pressuring us as hard as they can, so we’ve just got to move the puck."

The Bruins entered Monday just one point behind the Maple Leafs (with two games in hand) for first place in the Northeast Division.

"Right now we're playing yo-yo with these guys," said Julien of Toronto. "One game we're ahead of them, the next game we're behind them.

"This is an opportunity here, in these next two games, if we want to spread that gap a little bit -- it's up to us to go in and do the job."

And it sounds as if Coach Julien will remind his club that Boston's previous two wins against the Leafs (a 6-2 win in Boston on Oct. 22, and a 7-0 in Toronto on Nov. 5) don't mean too much going into this week's contests.

"They're a good team," said Julien. "We've seen them play some real good hockey.

"I think the last time we played them I think they were struggling a little bit defensively, not just against us, but had been giving up a lot of goals.

"That's not the case right now. Just like teams that played us early in the year, we're not the same team anymore, so that's how you make sure you don't get too overconfident -- by understanding that there's some highs and lows during the season."

Julien's club understands those ups and downs and now, 12 games into November; the B's have garnered points in each of those games, going 11-0-1.

"I think it was a lot about the desperation that we needed, as far as where we were in the standings and having to get back into the race," said Julien of the Bruins turn around. "Desperation makes you do a lot of good things, sometimes and I thought that we played with that early on, built momentum and started feeling good about ourselves.

"Right now, you have the feeling that the team that is going to beat you is going to have to play really well, and that's what we want to continue."
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