Bruins vs Canucks: Marchand’s Hit and the Aftermath

The Canucks knocked off the Bruins 4-3 in an exciting, hard-fought game on Saturday afternoon. I hadn’t had time to post about it and was going to wait until the B’s next game to comment on it but the back and forth between Boston and Vancouver after the game has necessitated a post.

The refereeing in the game was terrible – except for Marchand’s dirty hit on Sami Salo. Marchand deserved his five-minute major, game misconduct, and a likely suspension. But of the 107 penalty minutes in the game, those were about the only that the refs called correctly. It began less than four minutes into the game when a full brawl took place on the ice. During a line change the Bruins Shawn Thornton and Canucks’ Alexander Burrows got into it. Somehow, Thornton found himself being attacked by SIX Canucks all at once.

Yes, that’s more players than Vancouver is allowed on the ice. The Bruins quickly came to help Thornton and Milan Lucic, who was about to go off for a line change and had one foot on the ice and one foot on, skated over and helped out as well. And that was the end of Lucic’s night. The refs inexplicably gave him a game misconduct for leaving the bench and in the end, Vancouver ended up with a five-on-three for a full two minutes. How can six Canucks attack Thornton at one time and the refs deem it all okay (with the except of some matching roughing and fighting penalties).

The Canucks scored on the ensuing two-man advantage and eventually scored twice on Marchand’s idiotic play. Vancouver’s other goal? It came on another terrible call when Tyler Seguin was whistled for tripping a Canuck player. In fact, Seguin had tapped the Canuck on the ankle slightly, nothing more. However, this Canucks’ goal only evened up the officiating as the Bruins were gifted a goal themselves after a non-icing call (which as clearly icing) caused Vancouver to relax and when the refs didn’t blow the whistle, Boston took advantage. Continue reading “Bruins vs Canucks: Marchand’s Hit and the Aftermath”

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2008 NHL Draft and Off Season

A slower day in sports today so I want to look back at the NHL Draft and look ahead to the off season. I consider myself an NHL fan (a Boston Bruin fan to be precise), but I cannot say that I followed the draft very closely. I can tell you that the Tampa Bay Lightning chose center Steven Stamkos number one and that the Bruins drafted center Joe Colborne number 16. I can tell you that after Stamkos, the next four players chosen were all defense man and that 12 defense man were chosen in the first round. I can tell you that the tallest player taken in the first round was Tyler Myers by the Buffalo Sabres (12th pick).

If you want me to start analyzing individual picks, don’t get your hopes up. Most players in this draft will not be in the NHL for years to come, whether they are going to college or playing overseas. However, the top picks in the draft will look to make a difference next year. Stamkos will make the Lightning better immediately and the four defense man chosen after that should all have impacts on their respective teams next year.  Almost none of the playerstaken after the top five will see NHL ice time next year. With that in mind, it is extremely difficult to grade teams in the draft. Not just are most players not ready for the NHL and will spend a couple years getting better, but it is tough for NHL general managers to predict their respective team’s needs years in advance. So I am sticking away from grading each teams. I can barely grade my beloved Bruins. I have mixed feelings over picking Colborne. He is a talented player with great upside, but from what I’ve read, he may be too soft for the NHL. I guess Bruins management (and their fans) are hoping his time at Denver University will toughen him up. Continue reading “2008 NHL Draft and Off Season”