Saturday, March 20, 2010
Quick hits from Saturday's practice
By Joe McDonald
WILMINGTON, Mass. -- After a devastating 3-0 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday at the Garden, and a day off on Friday, the Boston Bruins were back on the ice Saturday morning at Ristuccia Arena.
The Bruins practiced for 45 minutes with everyone participating except defenseman Dennis Seidenberg, who is the latest player suffering from the flu bug that’s going around the locker room.
The rest of the players seem to be on the mend.
“I guess some better and as you noticed today, Seidenberg is going through that, and we had a trainer go through it yesterday,” said coach Claude Julien. “It hasn’t disappeared but there’s nothing you can do about it. You have to battle through those situations and realize the importance of tomorrow.”
The Bruins on Sunday will host the New York Rangers, who are only three points behind Boston for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Julien said he doesn’t know whether Seidenberg will be available.
Thursday’s shutout loss to the Penguins was extremely disappointing for the Bruins, and their practice on Saturday was upbeat, quick and serious. There have been a few times this season the Bruins have shown an ability to respond to adversity, and even though the team was flat on Thursday, Julien and his players are hoping a win over the Rangers will do the trick.
“We’re getting at the end of the season here where every game means a lot and we’ve shown a good side of our team at times, and we’ve certainly shown the other side that makes you question why are we so inconsistent,” said Julien. “The bottom line is right now we’ve got 12 games to get some consistency, and a night-after-night battle like you’re battling for your life, and that’s what we’ve got to show.”
Some other notes from Saturday morning:
* The Bruins have been inconsistent on the power play of late, so that was the focus of Saturday’s practice.
“You’re not going to score on every power play but what your power play has to do is create some chances and create momentum,” said Julien. “Last game we hit a couple of posts on that first power play, and if one of those goes in maybe it changes the outcome of the game, but it didn’t. Your power play has to continue to do that throughout the game. Our power play has been a little inconsistent, like the rest of our team has been this year and that has to get better.”
* Julien said there’s no progress on injured forward Marc Savard, who suffered a Grade 2 concussion on March 7 in Pittsburgh when he was on the receiving end of a blindside hit by the Penguins’ Matt Cooke. Savard is likely lost for the remainder of the season.
“He’s slowly getting better, but not to the point that we’re standing here real optimistic, seeing him back,” said Julien. “It is what it is right now, and it’s pretty serious.”