Thursday, December 16, 2010
DREW STAFFORD 3, BRUINS 2
I'm getting tired of Patrice Bergeron. It's kind of sad when the best he performed in the game, was in the post-game scuffle. He's adept at faceoffs, he's an excellent defensive forward, and you'll never see him make a mental mistake. But he's slow. My God is he slow. And when he gets a shooting lane, he'll either miss the net completely, or hit the goalie's chest, right in the logo.
He made the Canadian Olympic team because he does the little things. However, the Bruins don't have enough guys that do big things. I wouldn't mind trading Bergeron in the off-season, even if it were just for a draft pick. He belongs on a team that already has scorers, not a team that severely lacks them.
The refs were a bit iffy last night. Then again, killing 5 penalties is not a tall order. It is frustrating, though, that the 2 goals the B's allowed on the PK came from the 2 most questionable calls.
The most inexcusable goal was Buffalo's 2nd, which was a 5-on-5 goal. Thornton made an ill-advised pass in the neutral zone that got picked off. Then Boychuk failed to mark Drew Stafford, leaving him open for a one-timer in the slot. It was an unfair position to put Tuukka Rask in. Only Tim Thomas, or possibly Jesus, could have stopped that shot.
The Bruins' offense will struggle, which is why it's so important for the defense to not screw up like they did on that goal. I don't know why Shawn Thornton (of all people) is trying to thread the needle with low percentage passes like that.
Speaking of Thornton and his line, I like how regularly Claude Julien plays them. At the same time, it's not a scoring line. When you've held the puck for a minute in Buffalo's zone, and there's a faceoff in there, don't send out Thornton's line. Send a line that has a chance to score a goal. Send Krejci's line. This happened in the middle of the 1st period, and it baffled me.
I'll end on a rare positive note. 22 year old call-up Steve Kampfer (in German, his last name means "fighter") has acquitted himself nicely these last few games, replacing the injured Mark Stuart. He's not making mistakes, he's fast, and he's confident with the puck. He got an assist in this game, and genuinely earned the 20 minutes of ice-time he got.
The Bruins travel to Montreal to play the Canadiens tonight. In this 8 day stretch of tough games that started Saturday (Exam Week), they still haven't won yet. Tonight's a good time to change that.