Monday, October 06, 2014

Top Twelve: The 2013-2014 Boston Bruins

Patrice Bergeron’s hat trick against the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday night may be the first of special memories this year—but before the regular season commences, let’s take one longing glance at last season.

I present these Top Twelve highlights:

1.      Fitness first—it’s Zdeno Chara and. Kevin Millar with 31 pull-ups each; the shuttle run and heaving diaphragms gasping for air. Who plays with Chris Kelly on the third line: Carl Soderberg? Reilly Smith? Jordan Caron? Matt Lindblad? Anthony Camara? “Coaches and management,” says Dennis Leary, “have to start thinking about who will stay and who will go.” See and hear it all on Behind the B.
2.      More from Behind the B: Frisbee golf and forging friendships at the team-building retreat. Game One at the TD Garden against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Chris Kelly’s goal on a penalty shot starts the season right.
3.      Same episode—about a dozen minutes in. Matt Bartkowski and Tory Krug talking donuts and listening to Rush.
4.      Tough guy Torey Krug gets in to a fight and then skates to the penalty box. I can’t remember which game is was or who he fought, but I do recall Krug sitting down and then tucking his hair behind his ears.
5.      Halloween Night. My wife and I dressed, like normal human beings, stroll through the North End. A giant spider dangles from the doorway at Polcari’s as adolescents amble about and parents push their bedecked wee ones in strollers. The home team’s attack is woeful against the Anaheim Ducks, but our boys win in a shootout.
6.      Thanksgiving in VA. Listening to the Bruins on Internet radio. To my dismay, the Pittsburgh Penguins tie the game with .03 seconds remaining in the third period, but Krug scores the OT winner. Much merriment. Thank you.
7.      A Two-s-day Night in Alberta. Two Us, two Ks…two points for the B’s as Tuukka Rask earns his second shutout of the season The Bruins beat the Calgary flames, 2–0. Jerome Iginla earns two assists. And Johnny Boychuk returns to Boston to greet the next two Bruins fans to join his family. .
8.      Chief Travel Officer and Ticket Master. Johnny Bucyk, the team’s travel coordinator, carries his own luggage. As cheerful as they come, Chief fulfills ticket requests at the Game Day Breakfast.
9.      The Bear and the Gang, Christmas Spectacular. Produced when leaves still cling to New England’s trees, this video is a winner. Third Star: Rene Rancourt’s magic microphone. Second star: Patrice Bergeron as the proud owner of a shiny new weed eater. First Star: the Bear.
10.  Credit Card Roulette. At Wolfgang Puck’s restaurant, Jordie Caron foots the dinner bill.
11.  Per Johan Axelsson; He still sports the great hair and is still a snazzy dresser. Now P. J. is a scout for the B’s, and he’s on the road with his colleagues and management watching his former team on National TV against the Chicago Blackhawks. The Black and Gold lose in a shootout. Too bad none of the current Bruins deployed the move P. J. used against the Blackhawks in 2008.
12.  Frozen Yogurt Fraser. Rookie Matt Fraser’s admission that he was working off a froyo—this after he scored the OT winner in Game Three against the Canadiens—served as a sweet and serendipitous post-game interview. 
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