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Julien: No Excuses

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
Pearl Jam prior to their September 2004 show at the Garden. (Photo: Brian Babineau)
This morning Pearl Jam and their roadies will take over the Garden but it's doubtful that even the painful words to the song "Black" will make the mood around the arena any darker.

For no matter how excited the crowd on Causeway Street get during "The Fixer", there will be no hockey fix for the Hub on Tuesday night -- that road show will hit the stage in Philadelphia when the Canadiens and Flyers face off in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals.

On Friday, Boston Bruins head coach Claude Julien went out of his way to avoid a justification for his club's 3-0, 3-0 demise.

"I'm not going to stand here and find excuses," said Julien. "The bottom line is we had a 3-0 lead in the series, we had a 3-0 lead tonight, and we blew both.

"So there is no excuse. We have to take the responsibility that goes with it. Everyone."
The B's are now part of history and no amount of remorse will assuage the fact that the Black & Gold of 2009-10 are the answer to a trivia question. But as Boston's hockey media searched for answers (injuries, penalties, overconfidence?), it was too early for Coach Julien to provide any insight.

"Those are things you guys can figure out," said Julien to the press. "I think you’re all smart enough to follow the game and know some of those things that have happened.

"There’s no way I’m going to come up here and start finding excuses, because that’s not what it’s all about here. Again, we have to take responsibility. We were still in a good position, 3-0 lead in the series, to get that fourth win.

"We had four tries at it and we weren’t able to do it. So I’d rather grow from this and take the responsibility as a coach, as players, and as an organization, and move in the right direction with that."

Excuses don't help.

The Boston Bruins sit near their bench as the Philadelphia Flyers celebrate the win in Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Semifinal.
"It's not too often excuses get you to where you want to get," added Julien. "We wanted to get better."

The bottom line on the game remained obvious.

"I didn’t think we came out hard in the second period very well," said the coach. "They came out strong, and we, again, played on our heels a little bit and it took us a while to get going again.

"We had a couple of good shifts there late in the second, but I think if we would have had a better second period, it would have been a much different game. I think that’s where things kind of turned around in their favor."

But the turning point in the game actually came even earlier.

"I think we were extremely pleased with the way we started the game. We started the way we wanted to start it. We had lots of energy, we got a 3-0 lead, and that’s something that we wanted to do tonight—come out that way," explained Julien. Unfortunately [at the end of the first] they scored that goal from a broken stick and through a couple of guys it trickled in. And that gave them some life.

"That would have been nice to come into the dressing room with a 3-0 lead instead of a 3-1."
"Relentless" was the watch word around the Flyers this postseason and from the billboards to the t-shirts, the orange and black attack embodied that motto.

"The team that won tonight deserved it," said Julien. "Let’s not forget that.

"They worked hard, they got themselves back in, and, as people mentioned, they got some healthy bodies back and they became stronger and better as the series went on. They found a way to win."

And now the Bruins have to find a way to move on.

"Nobody feels like listening to a rah-rah speech or how good we’ve been at this time," said Julien. "We’ll regroup at some point.

"I know this team, two months ago, not too many people believed in it. We turned a corner and unfortunately, we weren’t able to finish what we started. That’s the unfortunate part. We’ve come a long ways from two months ago, and we had the opportunity to move further probably than anybody expected and we weren’t able to finish that.

"That’s probably the most disappointing thing right now for our hockey club."

Breakup Day is Tuesday
On Tuesday, the press will have an opportunity to speak to the Bruins players for the final time for the 2009-10 season. Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli and Head Coach Claude Julien will also participate in a press conference. Full coverage will be available on
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