August 26, 2014

City of Champions – Boston Scores Again

Last night the Boston Bruins defeated the Vancouver Canucks to win the right to drink beer out of The Stanley Cup.  After the clock read zero, I tweeted my congratulations.  “You gotta feel good for those long suffering Boston sports fans.”  It had been a long 29 years of hand-wringing including a “kiss your sister” celebration of Ray Bourque’s Stanley Cup in 2001 after the long-time Bruin was traded to the Avalanche to win it.  In case you feel like attacking Boston’s sports credibility, just imagine for a second that the Heat had won the Finals this year and we had a party with Zydrunas Ilgauskas.  No matter, though.  Bourque is long forgotten now that the Bruins won it all.  Talk about a Cleveland contrast.

There is a generation of Boston sports fans who will have no idea what to do with themselves if Boston sports teams don’t win it all every couple of years.  Since the millennium, it is absolutely astonishing.  The Patriots won in 2001, 2003, 2004 and nearly missed a perfect season in 2007.  The Red Sox won it in 2004 and 2007.  The Celtics won it in 2008.  And now the Bruins have won it in 2011.  So that’s seven championships across four teams in basically a decade’s time.  And beyond that, it is a ton of contention even when they didn’t win it all. [Read more...]

Bruins’ Rask Too Much As Jackets Fall Again in a Shoot-out 3-2

AP Photo/Jay LaPreteBruins 3, Blue Jackets 2 – SO
(box) – Highlights
CBJ: 32-27-10, 74 pts

The Jackets have been traditionally good against the East over the past four seasons. They would need that record to continue in a positive way, as they have gotten to the point of the season where they need two points basically every night.

They came out playing like they knew their playoff lives depended on it, registering eight of the first nine shots. And, while they had tons of chances to win this game in regulation and overtime, a hot opposing backup goaltender and their nemesis of late—the shootout—would decide it. It seemed early like the Jackets might be catching a break by facing Boston’s backup goalie, Tuukka Rask. At the end of the game, however, Rask would prove to be the difference.

[Read more...]

Game Preview: Blue Jackets vs. Bruins (Game #69) – Just Win, Baby

jackets vs. bruinsBoston Bruins (38-21-9, 85pts) vs.
Columbus Blue Jackets (32-27-9, 73pts)
Nationwide Arena, Columbus, OH
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
7:00 PM EST
TV: FSN-OH / Radio: WBNS 97.1 FM

(Dispatch Preview / SportsDirect Preview)
WFNY Tickets – Follow me @WFNYDP from the press box tonight!

The projection seems to be that the Jackets have to win 10 or 11 of their last 14 games (think: 10-2-2 or 11-3 to get to 95 points). Well, they can’t win 10 games in one night. The first order of business is to win one game: the game in front of them. That’s tonight against another Eastern Conference foe, though this one is a division-leader. The Bruins are scuffling just a bit (0-2-2 in their last four), but prior to that had ripped off seven regulation wins in a row. Boston hasn’t played since Friday (loss to the Islanders), so they will be rested and ready to go.

Get Your Blue Jackets St. Patrick’s Day Gear!

blue-jackets-st-patricks-tI’ll admit that I’m not really one for the whole festive jersey thing.  In fact, I find it pretty confusing when the Bulls play the Celtics, and both teams have on green and white jerseys.  But in a day in age where merchandise sales are a huge portion of team revenue, I can understand the whole movement. 

Given the cost of a new “look,” the break-even point is probably minimal.  Plus, with St. Patrick’s day, you have a mass amount of people that pretend to be Irish for 24 hours – after all, that gives you a reason to take off from work and imbibe the green beverage of your choice. 

So fear not, Blue Jacket fans.  You too can partake in the festivities thanks to the NHL’s new line of apparel[Read more...]

A Defensive Masterpiece: Jackets Shut Out Bruins

Steve Mason / AP Photo/Jay LaPrete

AP Photo/Jay LaPrete

Blue Jackets 2, Bruins 0
(Box) – Highlights

Record: 34-27-6  (74pts – 6th place)
Sports Club Stats Rank: 6th, 76.8%

Wow. Wow wow wow. What a game! In the preview, I wrote: “The only solace the Jackets can take is that Boston is only 4-7-3 since February 5th.  … Columbus is also 10-3-1 on the year against the Eastern Conference, and Steve Mason has five of his eight shutouts against Eastern foes as well.” How prophetic that would all turn out to be. The Jackets brought their top effort once again, managed to score a timely goal, and Steve Mason was again flat-out awesome when he had to be.

The Jackets really put it all together. [Read more...]

Preview: Blue Jackets vs. Bruins (Game 67)

Boston Bruins (43-15-9, 95pts) vs.
Columbus Blue Jackets (33-27-6, 72pts)
Nationwide Arena, Columbus OH
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
7:00 PM EDT

(Dispatch Preview / SportsDirect Preview)

The Jackets finally got a day off, and are still (hopefully) riding the wave of their record-setting victory over Detroit on Saturday night. They’d better be, as the front-runner for the President’s Trophy (most points overall) comes to Nationwide tonight. After starting out 5-3-3, the Boston Bruins  then went on a 34-5-3 tear to rise to the top of the Eastern Conference and NHL standings. They are second in the league (Detroit) in offense, lead the league in defense, and are solid on special teams as well. Boston has one of the only goalies who can make a better case for the Vezina trophy in Tim Thomas (2.08 GAA, .932 SV%, 4 SO). In other words, this one is a tough one. We know, however, that the Jackets tend to play to the level of their competition, especially on home ice (San Jose and Detroit, anyone?). They’re going to have to tonight.

[Read more...]