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The Blog: April 8th

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
5:56 p.m.

Cuts for a Cause is a Big Success

Chuck Kobasew takes a turn shaving Dennis Wideman's head during Cuts for a Cause. (photo: Kathleen Cronin)
Today, WBCN 104.1  teamed up with Boston Bruins defenseman Aaron Ward to host the second annual "Cuts for a Cause" to benefit the Boston Bruins Foundation and MassGeneral Hospital for Children’s Pediatric Oncology Unit from 3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. at The Harp.

"It's unbelievable" said Ward as he looked over the very large and generous crowd inside the Harp. "Last year, we were in the basement of a radio station and this year we are in a huge restaraunt and considering the fact that they had to turn people away and there was a line wrapping abound the building and around the corner, it's a good sign.

"Obviously, we are reaching the right people and I commend the people of Boston for rallying around this whole cause."

Ward, this season's John P. Bucyk Award winner (given to the most charitable Bruin), helped mastermind the whole affair du hair, and said that hockey players are taught from a young age to give back to their community.

"When we were at school [at Michigan] we...had a great role model in Red Berenson, who taught us that playing the game we could use our infulence in some positive manner," said Ward. "He used to take us to the hosptial at the University of Michigan -- the kids' hospital --  and we used to tour the floors.

"So, more or less every year you are trying to get yourself involved with something."

Throughout his professional career, there were similar events, but Ward wanted to put more of his own stamp on something -- hence the "Cuts for a Cause" came about.

"The Community Relations staff of the Boston Bruins helped out," said Ward. "This is a well run event...and it worked out great."

And how!

Over 500 people packed the Harp to generate $32,811 dollars and all of the money raised though the event will be donated through the Boston Bruins Foundation to benefit MassGeneral Hospital for Children.

"[It's good] anytime you can donate to charity, especially in this economy, because charities are happy to recieve any type of support [or] attention." said Ward.

"There are kids out there...that are battling cancer," continued the defenseman. "[The money raised] helps with the research and hopefully someday we can eradicate this [disease]."

5:17 p.m.
Julien's Philosophy
Coach Julien explained that there were different ways to look at the final stretch of the regular season.

"The guys that need healing, I think we can do that," said Julien. "We've got that luxury.

"But at the same time, the guys that we are playing, we need [them] to play well.

"So it's a little bit of both -- we want to continue to play solid games, but we want to make sure that if we can get some guys back to 100%, why not?"

2:23 p.m.
You can add Chuck Kobasew to the list of players on the "day-to-day" list.

"It's a maintenance day," said Coach Julien of Kobasew's absence from practice. "But, having said that, he's like the two other players [Axelsson, Wideman] and is day-to-day."

11:47 a.m.
The Bruins are skating, minus Dennis Wideman, P.J. Axelsson, Andrew Ference and Chuck Kobasew.

Ference is no surprise, since we had heard yesterday that the club would be without his services through the end of the regular season (Sunday) and that he would be re-evaluated at that time.

I'm sure that Coach Julien will address the others post practice.

The word from Montreal is that the Canadiens are not practicing today and will travel to Boston this afternoon.

9:20 a.m.

Ottawa Senators' Brian Lee fights to get between Boston Bruins' Mark Recchi, left, and Chuck Kobasew, right, during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Ottawa on Tuesday, April 7, 2009. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press,Sean Kilpatrick)
Boston Bruins head coach Claude Julien looked "OK" after his club fell to the Senators, 3-2, on Tuesday night in Ottawa. The normally fiery head coach had little negative to say to NESN's rinkside reporter, Naoko Funayama.

"Well, obviously, you want to have a solid game," said Julien. "I think we did a lot of good things, but it was either good or real bad.

"We had some chances to tie the game up, but there were too many breakdowns that gave them a lot of momentum and some good scoring chances."

Asked to pinpoint some of the positives from the game, Julien obliged.

"I think, offensively, we created," said Julien. "We had a couple of real good scoring chances off faceoffs and we had some...chances to tie the game, and some traffic in front of the net.

"We banged away at that, but in our own end and even in the offensive end, we got caught deep [and that resulted] in a three-on-one.

"Those kind of things haven't been happening to us for a long time."

Julien indicated that the B's may have taken their collective foot off the gas, just a bit.

"We were probably a little bit loose, and...[there was] probably a little hangover from winning the conference," he said.

Ottawa Senators' Alex Auld, left, looks back into the net as Boston Bruins' Mark Recchi celebrates teammate Zdeno Chara's (not shown) goal during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Ottawa on Tuesday, April 7, 2009. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press,Sean Kilpatrick)
But at least nobody else got hurt. Right, Coach?

"You don't want to go into those games thinking that way," said Julien. "But obviously, that's what you would like to have from here on [out] in order to make sure your team is healthy heading into the playoffs.

"But the way to stay healthy is just to play hard and continue to play the way you have been -- the minute you let up, that's when you get injured."

Coach Julien also talked about Manny Fernandez and his 29 saves.

"The first goal was tipped off [a defenseman's] stick and the second one was a shorthanded breakaway...and a nice move by Fisher," said Julien. "He might've wanted that third one back, I'm sure, but he made some big saves at the end when we gave them those outnumbered situations.

"I think his game keeps getting better every time we put him out there."

The Bruins hit the ice for practice in Wilmington at 11:30 a.m. JB
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