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Last years start vs this years

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Old
10-24-2003, 02:57 PM
  #1
DKH
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Last years start vs this years

First off, I'd be beyond shocked if the Broons come even within a game or two of last years start but not because they are not better- which I think they are. They lost two key players early- Samsonov and Lapointe- but kept winning. They always appeared somewhat paper tigers and just when I started to think- geez, they are pretty good, they transformed into the Seinfeldian World of Bizarro Bruins.

Truth be told they were never that good- they ended about where they should have been. Its just the way they got there that was so maddening. This team is significantly better in 4 areas imo.

Goaltending- the team was not 'completely' confident with the two we had last year; but moreso, I think they were aware of the battle the two were having to establish number one goalie. They are athletes and have egos and the money can be pretty big for number one goalies in the NHL. Potvin has a track record and isn't yet ancient- and has already shown the last 3 weeks he can play with the best of them on any night. Raycroft is an upgrade and maybe a major upgrade- on and off the ice.

DEFENSE- Berard started off great, and Girard brought exciting offense but Jillson's arrival and Boynton's expected development make this a fun area to watch. There will be mistakes by Jillson but anyone who has watched hockey can identify his talent. McGillis wasn't here for the start and he's a good tough, experienced player.

OFFENSE- just adding Samsonov is enough; but you add back Lapointe, bring aboard Green and Bergeron. Knuble and Axelsson are more confident and seasoned. McCarthy adds what we read great leadership and has played very well. Ditto for Donato. They add another top prospect this weekend in Zinovjev and overall its signifcantly better.

COACHING- its obvious some of the players weren't on the same side as Ftorek. He lost many players which is to bad. I liked Robbie but there was no question he didn't have this team. His signing really suprised me- and hey, the guy was probably the best HS player ever and I have never met anyone (other than Broons players ) that didn't think the world of him. That said, Sullivan's the right guy imo for this team; he's just old enough or just young enough....he knows the organization, the town, and the players; he's respected by the old gaurd like Pat Burns and Mike Keenan, and the Wayne Gretzky's of the world. And my friends all like him

Dupes wrote about this today and I agree (nice way Dupes worked HUB OF HOCKEY into the last paragraph ) the goaltending ultimately will be the key- stealing a game like Dallas you need to do every know and then especially after we saw the Broons are capable of turning in a Pepe LePew like last night from time to time.

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10-24-2003, 03:24 PM
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I think three of the biggest reasons for the B's surprising start last season were:

1. Montreal playoff emabarassment - Sean O'Donnell, Joe Thornton and Glen Murray all said how the team wanted to prove themselves after being humiliated by the Habs five months earlier. Call it redemption, pride or what have you, but they were motivated to play. When your key players are charged, it goes a long way to carrying your team.

2. Ftorek's improved system - With Berard and Girard in tow, Robbie finally had a real element of speed on defense. He changed his gameplan as a result. If anyone knows Ftorek, he's a student of the game. He can see things that others can't see. His idea was to really spring the offense into action with a quick transition. We would see the B's d-men quickly gather the puck and shoot an accurate first pass to a winger set up near the blueline, who, in turn, would tip it to a rushing forward. It was a fast breakout, and many teams were not ready for it. The Bruins create numerous scoring chances by hitting the opponent's blueline with speed. By comparision, you don't see much of that this season. Either way, once word got out, teams would negate that forward pass or increase their trap to slow the B's speed through the nuetral zone. In other words, they adjusted.

3. It was early in the season - As with most teams, the first month often includes auditions that carry over from training camp. Teams are still finding combos, tweaking their teams and adjusting their gameplans. On the other hand, the Bruins were a smooth running team executing quite effectively. That tilted enough games to the B's favor. To that end, I distinctly remember the B's winning several easy games -- meaning they didn't have to work too hard for the W.

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10-24-2003, 03:28 PM
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I agree with you Meister...

the only thing I would like to add is also the Bruins benefitted ( maybe the most ) from the NHL crackdown on interference early in the Season..

Once the calls went away and clutch and grab came back the open ice left too.

IMO...

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10-24-2003, 03:31 PM
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We actually discussed this on the open for last night's telecast. This year's hot October road trip does leave a better taste in the mouth for a couple of reasons --- and you touched on most of it. The goaltending is markedly improved. Even in a woeful effort by the B's last night, we thought Raycroft looked terrific. Last year, this team was being carried by the Joe Thornton line, and to be honest, that line isn't even playing great yet. Does anyone expect Glen Murray's goal-scoring drought to continue much longer? This is a much deeper team. My scorecard from last October 24th has names on it like McInnis, Stumpel, Brown, Sweeney, Berard, Huml, Stock and Kultanen. I would suggest that the replacements for those (McGillis, McCarthy, Samsonov, Moran, Lapointe, Jillson, Bergeron, Green and Donato) constitute a significant upgrade. Stinkers like last night are inevitable in the night-to-night reality of the NHL, they just have to be kept to a minimum. This year's team is better for a variety of reasons but the biggest is this --- last October 24th your goaltenders were Shields and Thomas, this October 24th they are Raycroft and Potvin. Keep the faith.

Dale

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10-24-2003, 04:27 PM
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I wouldn't diminish Tim Thomas' talent by lumping him with Shields to make your point. He was something like 3-1-1 last year with the big club, had a good year at Providence, and is off to a fantastic start this year - GAA under one.

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10-24-2003, 04:37 PM
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Certainly not diminishing Tim's efforts or abilities --- as I think you could tell, I liked him the best of the four. Simply pointing out that I feel the goaltending duo at this time is better than it was a year ago today, that's all.

Dale

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10-24-2003, 05:08 PM
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Jonathan Girard wouldve looked great on this years blueline. I think our defense is missing a speed guy that can carry the puck

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10-24-2003, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Broonzfanz
Jonathan Girard wouldve looked great on this years blueline. I think our defense is missing a speed guy that can carry the puck
absolutely agree. i think most of us had very high hopes for girard this season, and it's a real shame what happened with him. thankfully, it sounds like he'll be able to make a full recovery. of course, bryan berard continues to sit out there, and OC claims he's still interested (depending on the price). dale- heard anything on this front?

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10-24-2003, 06:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DArnold850
We actually discussed this on the open for last night's telecast. This year's hot October road trip does leave a better taste in the mouth for a couple of reasons --- and you touched on most of it. The goaltending is markedly improved. Even in a woeful effort by the B's last night, we thought Raycroft looked terrific. Last year, this team was being carried by the Joe Thornton line, and to be honest, that line isn't even playing great yet. Does anyone expect Glen Murray's goal-scoring drought to continue much longer? This is a much deeper team. My scorecard from last October 24th has names on it like McInnis, Stumpel, Brown, Sweeney, Berard, Huml, Stock and Kultanen. I would suggest that the replacements for those (McGillis, McCarthy, Samsonov, Moran, Lapointe, Jillson, Bergeron, Green and Donato) constitute a significant upgrade. Stinkers like last night are inevitable in the night-to-night reality of the NHL, they just have to be kept to a minimum. This year's team is better for a variety of reasons but the biggest is this --- last October 24th your goaltenders were Shields and Thomas, this October 24th they are Raycroft and Potvin. Keep the faith.

Dale
Dale, I listen to you and Neumie everyday atleast half the show and always the first segment. (before I go on I must suckup and say I enjoy you guys- its a great show) I realize its a football & baseball town and myself have Patriots season tix and probably would say my favorite team is the Red Sox. I was 8 years old in 67 so you know why...I still can name your favorite Minnesotta Twins lineup and staff (Chance, Merritt, Perry, Katt, Boswell??) BUT you have to atleast get MOC or Harry or Grapes or someone on once a week- preferably on Thursday which is usually a hockey game day. I realize discussing Lars Jonsson or Milan Jurcina will have radios turning off all over the 128 area but these 3 would atleast give the casual listener something. Harry always seems to be pretty entertaining with Ordway but why not MOC every other week. Mike Emerik is pretty good as is John Davidson or Barry Melrose. A real sleeper and a local guy who could expand to the Sox, Celts, and Pats is John Buccigross. He does hockey but he's a local guy who's Boston all the way and a pretty good talent on ESPN.

Just working in a rotation of MOC, Buccigross, Grapes, heck- Gordie or Brickley would suffice.

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10-24-2003, 06:52 PM
  #10
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Originally Posted by Gee Wally
I agree with you Meister...

the only thing I would like to add is also the Bruins benefitted ( maybe the most ) from the NHL crackdown on interference early in the Season..

Once the calls went away and clutch and grab came back the open ice left too.

IMO...
you're 1000% correct sir. if you're not permitted to 'interfere' with a line of knuble-thornton-murray...well let's just say the results are and were obvious. if talent were allowed to roam freely, and hacking/slashing/tripping/holding/etc were called ALL THE TIME...we'd again be one of if not the best in the league-even during a 82 game schedule IMO. i mean honestly...i was thinking the other day...how many times do you hear commentators say "the first goal is of UTMOST IMPORTANCE" and back it up with statistics like "the leafs are only 2-23-5 after the opponent scores first". holy $#@@...we're what? 3-1-1 or something when the opponent strikes first?? this team is OOZING with talent-but defensive oppositions hold us at bay pretty easily because we lack alot of high end speed upfront. yes-murray/thornton/knuble are fast FOR BIG GUYS...but they're not anywhere close to kovalchuk/heatley/mceachern for example

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10-24-2003, 06:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Gary
you're 1000% correct sir. if you're not permitted to 'interfere' with a line of knuble-thornton-murray...well let's just say the results are and were obvious. if talent were allowed to roam freely, and hacking/slashing/tripping/holding/etc were called ALL THE TIME...we'd again be one of if not the best in the league-even during a 82 game schedule IMO. i mean honestly...i was thinking the other day...how many times do you hear commentators say "the first goal is of UTMOST IMPORTANCE" and back it up with statistics like "the leafs are only 2-23-5 after the opponent scores first". holy $#@@...we're what? 3-1-1 or something when the opponent strikes first?? this team is OOZING with talent-but defensive oppositions hold us at bay pretty easily because we lack alot of high end speed upfront. yes-murray/thornton/knuble are fast FOR BIG GUYS...but they're not anywhere close to kovalchuk/heatley/mceachern for example
. p.s. i REALLY hope zino/sammy click together. it'd be the best thing that happen for us. we'd have TWO trapbreakers alongside one another and have ALOT better chance against trapping teams. another idea i thought of was (is sammy cant find decent linemates)-play sammy with joe/murray for trap teams and feed sammy the puck in the neutral zone.

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10-25-2003, 02:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Gary
. p.s. i REALLY hope zino/sammy click together. it'd be the best thing that happen for us. we'd have TWO trapbreakers alongside one another and have ALOT better chance against trapping teams. another idea i thought of was (is sammy cant find decent linemates)-play sammy with joe/murray for trap teams and feed sammy the puck in the neutral zone.
Wouldn't a line of LW-Samsonov C-Bergeron RW-Zinovjev look awesome!
...but I couldn't see 2 rookies on the same line at this point...could you?

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10-25-2003, 04:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DKH
Dale, I listen to you and Neumie everyday atleast half the show and always the first segment. (before I go on I must suckup and say I enjoy you guys- its a great show) I realize its a football & baseball town and myself have Patriots season tix and probably would say my favorite team is the Red Sox. I was 8 years old in 67 so you know why...I still can name your favorite Minnesotta Twins lineup and staff (Chance, Merritt, Perry, Katt, Boswell??) BUT you have to atleast get MOC or Harry or Grapes or someone on once a week- preferably on Thursday which is usually a hockey game day. I realize discussing Lars Jonsson or Milan Jurcina will have radios turning off all over the 128 area but these 3 would atleast give the casual listener something. Harry always seems to be pretty entertaining with Ordway but why not MOC every other week. Mike Emerik is pretty good as is John Davidson or Barry Melrose. A real sleeper and a local guy who could expand to the Sox, Celts, and Pats is John Buccigross. He does hockey but he's a local guy who's Boston all the way and a pretty good talent on ESPN.

Just working in a rotation of MOC, Buccigross, Grapes, heck- Gordie or Brickley would suffice.
Dale, I agree with DKH here. I too am a regular listener of your show, and it is the best show on the station. D&C talk too much politics for me and I listen to the big show mainly for its comedy. I like your show because you and Neumie talk sports all the time and provide insights. A second reason I listen is that your show is the only one to discuss the Bs. Adding a weekly segment with MOC, Harry, etc would be great. Something similar to what D&C do with Larry Luchinno would provide both casual and die hard Bs fans with something to look forward to each week.

Keep up the great work both on your show and the broadcoast booth.

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10-25-2003, 05:32 AM
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psuthornton
Dale, I agree with DKH here. I too am a regular listener of your show, and it is the best show on the station. D&C talk too much politics for me and I listen to the big show mainly for its comedy. I like your show because you and Neumie talk sports all the time and provide insights. A second reason I listen is that your show is the only one to discuss the Bs. Adding a weekly segment with MOC, Harry, etc would be great. Something similar to what D&C do with Larry Luchinno would provide both casual and die hard Bs fans with something to look forward to each week.

Keep up the great work both on your show and the broadcoast booth.
I like Boomer and Brady on Mondays, but Lucchino is must hear to me. Love him or hate him he's informative and I'm personally a Larry guy all the way.

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10-25-2003, 05:41 AM
  #15
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Originally Posted by sagginb
Wouldn't a line of LW-Samsonov C-Bergeron RW-Zinovjev look awesome!
...but I couldn't see 2 rookies on the same line at this point...could you?
i could see that being a possiblity. the coach looks to see if he can have 3 guys out there he can trust and even though bergeron is a rookie and so young, sullivan has shown a great amount of confidence in him. he's played in almost every scenario already. PP/PK/key icetime at the end of a game/offensive-defensive zone draws with the clock winding down in a tight game. for this to happen-all sully needs is the same confidence in zino.

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10-25-2003, 06:04 AM
  #16
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Originally Posted by Gary
i could see that being a possiblity. the coach looks to see if he can have 3 guys out there he can trust and even though bergeron is a rookie and so young, sullivan has shown a great amount of confidence in him. he's played in almost every scenario already. PP/PK/key icetime at the end of a game/offensive-defensive zone draws with the clock winding down in a tight game. for this to happen-all sully needs is the same confidence in zino.
Another nice point on this line would be both Zinovjev and Bergeron are both able to play center and Bergeron is a righty and Zinovjev a lefty thus options on faceoff setups.

So far I like the playmaker side of Bergeron's game on that Rolston/Axelsson line.
I think they should try Zinovjev with Samsonov...with either say Lapointe or McCarthy as wingers.
I don't know if I like Green between Sammy and Zinovjev either.
At the same time Green is a real good faceoff guy and we will need him so to slide him into a 4th line role wouldn't be a great move so soon.

I say this so far...
Thornton and Knuble work together...
Samsonov and Zinovjev should be given a real chance to work...
Axelsson/Rolston/Bergeron works well...
and I think the physical style of Green would work great with Lapointe...
so IMO that is the makeup of 4 lines....don't number them 1-4...just have 4 lines.
I think Murray will ride out on the top line with Thornton/Knuble...

So I say build 4 lines...not in any numbered order!

Axelsson/Rolston/Bergeron
Zamuner/Green/Lapointe
Knuble/Thornton/Murray
Samsonov/Zinovjev/McCarthy
...with Donato and Grosek as scratched

Some might say why put Zinovjev at center with McCarthy on wing?
Well it's really for balance...I think a line of Zamuner/Green/Lapointe wouldn't score alot but could be used as a good checking line against tougher top lines...and at the same time give us 3 other options that are able to score goals.
I could see a swap of McCarthy and Lapointe as well.
All this end up to me is that Sullivan has many options as line combo's...some depth we haven't had in a few years.

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