Boston Bruins to face Vancouver Canucks in 2011 Stanley Cup Finals – and Clarence has Returned!

Posted in Boston Bruins, History, Hockey, Television, Travel and Nature with tags , , , , on May 31, 2011 by clarencethehorse

How could I ignore the Bruins going to their first Stanley Cup finals since 1990?

While I may have been away from the blog, I’ve been intently watching this Bruins team as it has placed a stranglehold around it’s fans hearts by winning their first three rounds in the 2011 NHL playoffs.

It’s been a while, and the Finals start tomorrow night in Vancouver, so here’s a quick summary of what has happened since my last post:

  • Blake Wheeler is gone
  • Tyler Seguin is BACK
  • Elizabeth Taylor is Dead
  • After losing the first two games at home, the Bruins beat Montreal in a thrilling game 7 OT classic. A Nathan Horton goal sends fans into a state of nirvana in the streets surrounding the Garden.
  • Osama Bin Laden – DEAD.
  • Bruins then sweep the Flyers in four straight, proving they CAN close out a 3-0 lead. Redemption? Check.
  • Our hometown heroes then knock off the Tampa Bay Lightning in another 7-game instant classic, with Horton again delivering the game 7 winner in a 1-0 thriller.

Sit back and enjoy, Bruins fans…who knows when this may come around again.

Here’s an interesting perspective from a Vancouver TV station…including the demise of the mysteriously-named “Boston Pizza”.

Clarencethehorse’s Blog: 2010 in Review

Posted in Boston Bruins, Hockey, Movies, Music with tags , on January 13, 2011 by clarencethehorse

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

Madison Square Garden can seat 20,000 people for a concert. This blog was viewed about 69,000 times in 2010. If it were a concert at Madison Square Garden, it would have performed about 3 times.

In 2010, there were 35 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 63 posts. There were 232 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 79mb. That’s about 4 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was October 6th with 6,107 views. The most popular post that day was Momentum Screeches to a Halt for the Bruins.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were motherpucker.ca, mail.live.com, search.aol.com, facebook.com, and intranet.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for amy winehouse, sideshow bob, alex ovechkin, grateful dead, and ovechkin.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

Momentum Screeches to a Halt for the Bruins November 2009
5 comments

2

Black Hawks, Rangers Overpower Flat Bruins January 2010
6 comments

3

Grateful Dead’s Spirit is Alive and Well in 2010 February 2010

4

Capitals Win Eleventh in a Row as Bruins Lose Eighth in a Row, 4-1; Milton Supman is recalled February 2010
4 comments

5

Red-Hot Capitals Provide Huge Challenge for Struggling Bruins February 2010

Clarence Will be Back Soon…but will the Bruins?

Posted in Boston Bruins, Hockey, Movies, Television with tags , , , on December 20, 2010 by clarencethehorse

We’ll Miss You, Frank…..Leslie Nielsen 1926-2010

Bruins Face Los Angeles Kings Looking to Extend Winning Streak to Four

Posted in Boston Bruins, Hockey, Movies with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 20, 2010 by clarencethehorse

Since last Saturday’s pathetic undertaking against the Senators, a 2-0 loss on home ice, the Bruins have rebounded nicely with three consecutive wins. While the entire team has been playing well, this stretch may prove to be the offensive ‘coming-out’ party for B’s power winger Milan Lucic.

“Looch” had an assist in the 3-0 win over New Jersey, then had the B’s first goal in a 3-2 victory over the Rangers at Madison Square Garden, then sent the Boston Garden into a frenzy on Thursday night with a natural hat trick in a 4-0 Bruins win over the Florida Panthers.

Bruins 3, Devils 0 – 11/15/10

Tim Thomas was HUUUGE in the opening minutes of this game, and somehow kept New Jersey off the scoreboard:

Mark Stuart had a particularly strong game, and he buried Mattias Tedenby on this play:

Michael Ryder (5), Nathan Horton (8) and “Bad Blake” Wheeler (3) scored to help improve Tim Thomas‘ record to 9-1-0 on the season. The shutout was Thomas’ fourth on the young season, tops in the NHL.

Bruins 3, Rangers 2 – 11/17/10

Broken record alert: Tim Thomas stood on his head, especially in the third period when the Bruins killed off a 5 on 3 Rangers power play for 1:44, and the Bruins held on for a 3-2 victory over the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden. Milan Lucic (7), Tyler Seguin (4) and Mark Recchi (2) had the Bruins goals, as Thomas’ record went to an impressive 10-1-0, with a 1.37 GAA and a .959 SV%.

Click on the picture below for highlights:

Bruins 4, Panthers 0 – 11/18/2010

Tuukka Rask, at 0-4-1 on the season, was looking for his first win of the season, as ex-Bruin Dennis Wideman and the Florida Panthers came to the Garden on Thursday night. Nathan Horton, Dennis Seidenberg and Gregory Campbell were also playing against their old Panthers teammates for the first time since arriving to the Bruins.

Milan Lucic‘s hat trick led the B’s…see video above  . Looch scored two goals in 15 seconds in the third period to complete the natural hat trick, and send the hats flying at the Boston Garden.

The highlight of the first two periods was this Shawn Thornton/Darcy Hordichuk heavyweight bout:

So Tuukka finally gets a well-deserved ‘W’ with a shutout, and gets that annoying monkey off his back.

Bruins Notes:

  • The win over the Rangers was Claude Julien’s 143rd win as Bruins coach, passing Tom Johnson and moving him into 5th place for wins all-time by a Bruins coach.
  • Mark Recchi had 2 assists in the New Jersey win, the 391st multi-point game of his career.
  • The Bruins are outscoring their opponents 22-9 in the third period this season.
  • Tuukka’s shutout against the Panthers was the seventh of his career.
  • Longtime Clarence confidant BornAgainBruinsFan was at the game against Florida…good work BABF, 1-0-0 so far!
  • Is it me, or does Panther’s coach Peter DeBoer look like a young Cousin Eddie from “Vacation”?

The 12-6 Los Angeles Kings visit the Boston Garden tonight, and I will make this promise:  If Rene Rancourt sings the national anthems, the Bruins WILL win.

Blake Wheeler Sucks (Bruins lose to Ottawa, 2-0)

Posted in Boston Bruins, Hockey, Music, Television with tags , , , , , , , , on November 14, 2010 by clarencethehorse

Blake Wheeler is probably a nice guy. The kind of guy that would drive you to the airport, or let you borrow his golf shoes.  But as a hockey player currently for the Boston Bruins, he sucks.  I’m sick of hearing about his potential. Comparisons to Cam Neely?? Please.

It looks like he even sucks as a drummer:

I could sit here all night and bash “Bad Blake” Wheeler, really earning that nickname last night on one play in particular…all he had to do was NOT hit the puck with his glove. Click below to see the clip courtesy NHL.com:

And I could bash the Bruins, too, for the entire team’s lack of urgency in last night’s 2-0 loss to the Ottawa Senators.

But I’m going to let someone else do it.

Take it away, TuukkaTime

Tim Thomas (8-1-0) took the loss to end his season-opening eight-game winning streak.

The entire Bruins team was flat in last night’s embarrassing home loss. So flat, in fact, that 42-year-old Mark Recchi felt the need to drop the gloves with Chris Campoli, something Recchi hasn’t done since March 2004. Recchi earned the victory nod with a closing takedown:

Some Past Mark Recchi Fights…

We will have to wait until tomorrow night to see if Recchi’s message got through to these young Bruins.  The underachieving 5-10-2 New Jersey Devils visit the Garden on Monday with underperforming Ilya Kovalchuk in tow.  From last week…

Wanna Get Away?

Bruins Rally; Club Defenseless Penguins 7-4

Posted in Boston Bruins, Hockey, Movies, Music, Television with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 11, 2010 by clarencethehorse

Relax, PETA. Save your misguided vitriol…

And remember one thing: penguins would kill you if they could.

This past Wednesday night, the Bruins entered the third period in Pittsburgh behind 4-2. In a hard-fought first two periods that featured three good fracas:

..as well as Milan Lucic almost taking the dreaded “opposing bench plunge”:

…the Bruins just could not seem to click, and were being beaten to pucks in all zones. One thing for sure: last season’s Boston Bruins would have folded* like a Circus Tent and lost the game without much of a third period fight.

I’m not sure what happened in the Bruins locker room in between the second and third periods, but the Bruins came out for the third period as a team with a purpose…maybe Claude Julien gave his troops a motivational speech:

Whatever the reason, the Bruins turned a 4-2 deficit into a 7-4 runaway victory by throwing a good old-fashioned 5-0 third period on the beaten and stunned Penguins.

The five unanswered third period goals came from Nathan Horton (7), Zdeno Chara (3), Shawn Thornton (3, game winner), “Bad Blake” Wheeler (2) and Milan Lucic (6), as 15 players registered points on the night for the Bruins.  Only Mark Stuart, Andrew Ference and Danielle Paille were held off the scoreboard by the Penguins.

Watch and enjoy:

The Penguins peppered Bruins goalie Tim Thomas with 46 shots on the night, but Thomas continued his white-hot (and historic) start to improve to 8-0-0.

Random Bruins Notes:

  • Toronto has lost seven straight games as of Wednesday.  Bruins fans can only hope those struggles continue, as the Bruins hold Toronto’s first round pick in next summer’s draft from the Phil Kessel signing. Another high first-rounder for the Bruins perhaps?
  • The Bruins suffered a pretty bad hangover the next night against Montreal at the Garden, as the lost 3-1 with Tuukka Rask in goal for the B’s. Carey Price started in goal for Montreal, and frustrated the B’s at every turn. Tied at one entering the third, Brian Gionta and Scott Gomez scored third period goals to help Montreal defeat the Bruins 3-1.
  • The Montreal loss put Rask at 0-4-1 on the season. This is no indication of how Rask has been playing, but it’ll be nice to get Tuukka that first ‘W’ of the season.

The Bruins play an always dangerous Ottawa Senators team at the Garden tonight…here’s hoping that my old friend Rene Rancourt performs the national anthems before tonight’s game.

If Rene does the honors tonight, Clarence guarantees a win for the Bruins against the Senators.

* Folding:

Bob Mould at the Met in Pawtucket this past Monday performing “Wishing Well”:

Boston Bruins Not Doubting Thomas; Goalie Remains Undefeated as Bruins Cool Off

Posted in Boston Bruins, History, Hockey, Movies, Music, Television with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 7, 2010 by clarencethehorse

The Boston Bruins started November with three games in four nights, and were hoping to build on the momentum of their 6-2 October.  Goaltender Tim Thomas was a large part of that momentum, as he took a 6-0-0 record into Buffalo to start the three game stretch. The Sabres, at 3-7-1, were struggling like Snooki at a spelling bee….could this be a ‘trap’ game?

The Bruins let it be known that they would be falling for no traps, as they jumped out to a 3-0 first period lead on the strength of shorthanded goals from Brad Marchand (1) and Patrice Bergeron (2). “Bad Blake”  Wheeler added his first of the season, on the strength of a terrific pass from Michael Ryder.

Marchand‘s goal was his first of his career, and the Bruins first shorthanded goal of the season:

Ryder, who seems to have gotten some type of B-12 shot  this season, scored in the second to make it 4-0.  Ryder’s intensity has been a pleasant surprise this season…but he’s still nauseatingly  overpaid at $4 million a season. The Bruins held on for a 5-2 win, as Milan Lucic added an empty netter and Thomas made 33 saves.

Thomas became the first goalie in Boston Bruins franchise history to start the season 7-0-0, and the 2010-11 Boston Bruins team became the first to open the season at 5-0-0 on the road.

Lucic has points in eight of the Bruins’ first nine games, and the comparisons to Cam Neely do not seem as far-fetched as they once did.

Game Notes:

  • This game was the 1,000th NHL game for local product Mike Grier.
  • The Bruins are now 4-0-0 in games in which they are outshot. From the “meaningless stats” file.
  • Word has it that Marco Sturm is making strides in getting back into the Bruins’ lineup. Sources say he should be ready to get back on the ice and re-injure himself in 4-6 weeks.

Clarence had to DVR the Bruins next game against the Washington Capitals, as I was giddily attending the Guided By Voices Classic Lineup Reunion show at the Paradise. But having already beaten Washington twice already this young season, the Bruins should have expected a very tough game. Tim Thomas was back in net for the B’s, and the Bruins left him out to dry for most of the first two periods.  The B’s were behind 3-0 entering the third period, and coach Claude Julien pulled Thomas and put in Tuukka Rask.  From the fast-forward DVR review of the game, the Bruins seemed to be turning the puck over in the neutral zone quite a bit. This was something they had not been doing this season, and an instant-offense team like Washington will take advantage of many of these mistakes.  And they did.  The Bruins mounted an admirable comeback in the third to make it 3-3, but Rask let in a long snapper by John Carlson, then Alex Ovechkin added an empty-netter to make it a 5-3 final and a win for the Capitals.

Since Rask was in net when the Bruins tied the game at three, he became the goalie of record and took the loss….thus keeping Timmy  still undefeated (7-0-0) on the season.

Here’s the highlights of this game courtesy NHL.COM:

CLICK HERE -> http://video.nhl.com/videocenter/console?hlg=20102011,2,180&fr=false <- CLICK HERE

The St. Louis Blues came to the Garden leading the NHL’s Central Division with a 7-1-2 record, with ex-Canadien Jaroslav Halak between the pipes. Ex-Bruin Vladimir Sobotka got the Blues out to a 1-0 lead in the first, as the Bruins struggled to beat the omnipresent Halak.  Tuukka was in net for the Bruins, and played well (34 saves).  Nathan Horton hit more posts than Patches Kennedy driving to a 2:00 a.m. House vote, and Mark Stuart had a great hit on Jay McClement followed by a good bout against B.J. Crombeen:

…but the Bruins seemed a step behind all night, and when they did get their chances, Halak stoned them.

Gregory Campbell scored his first as a Bruin to tie it at one in the third, and give the Bruins a chance to get the two points.  The OT period was scoreless, and although the shootout featured Tyler Seguin‘s first shootout goal (a beauty), the Bruins (again) clanked TWO posts and ended up losing the game:

Obviously not the best of stretches for the Bruins, but they still gathered three out of a possible six points over the four night span…far from a disaster .

The B’s have a few days off before they face the Penguins in Pittsburgh on Wednesday night, followed by home games against Montreal and Ottawa on Thursday and Saturday nights respectively.

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