End of game, Canadiens win 5-1: If the Bruins play this way on Saturday night with former teammate Phil Kessel coming in, then it could be a long night for whomever is in net. The defense was a mess too on Friday and let down a subpar Tim Thomas in a 5-1 drubbing.
The power play also suffered, going 0-for-7. It looked like Boston’s power play of the first month and a half of the season and couldn’t generate many chances. But it was just one of those nights for the Bruins, and as we said, they need to put this one behind them immediately with a big Northeast Division tilt on Saturday night in Boston.
Thanks for joining us tonight for our Bruins Live Blog. Au revoir and bonne nuit!
Third period, 5:39, Canadiens 5-1: The game is mercifully drawing to a close here. The Bruins will need to bury this one away and get ready for the Leafs on Saturday.
Third period, 9:08, Canadiens 5-1: Lots of sloppy play on both sides and the Bruins power play looks horrendous out there. A 6-on-3 situation and they still can’t score. They’re now 0-for-7.
Chris Berman of ESPN just cranked out a happy birthday wish on the Jumbotron and got a solid ovation.
Third period, 10:08, Canadiens 5-1: Marco Sturm just took a tripping penalty and the Bruins power play is almost over. Why all these penalties now?
Third period, 10:20, Canadiens 5-1: David Krejci and Josh Gorges just got matching penalties. The Bruins still have 81 seconds of power-play time left here.
Third period, 11:23, Canadiens 5-1: Matt D’Agostini is in the penalty box as well now, and the Bruins have a two-man advantage.The Bruins have actually pulled Tuukka Rask for a 6-on-3 situation.
Third period, 13:57, Canadiens 5-1: Maxim Lapierre is in the sin bin for a four-minute high-sticking penalty and the Bruins are going on their fourth power play. They’re 0-for-3 tonight.
Third period, 15:15, Canadiens 5-1: Vladimir Sobotka just scored to ruin Carey Price‘s shutout bid. Price had 28 saves up until that goal. Matt Hunwick got the helper.
Third period, 16:38, Canadiens 5-0: We’re underway here in the third period and Tuukka Rask has replaced Tim Thomas in net.
End of second period, Canadiens 5-0: This is ugly. The rested Bruins are getting embarrassed at the Bell Centre 5-0 after two periods of play and if this game stays this way, they would lose their first game in regulation (regular season or playoffs) since Game 7 of the first-round series with Montreal in the 2008 playoffs.
Tim Thomas hasn’t looked great at all but the Bruins defense has completely let him down tonight. On the last Habs goal, Derek Morris coughed that puck up like it was a hot potato. That has been the case with most of the Bruins defense tonight and the speedy Canadiens wingers are buzzing and pouncing on the opportunities.
Second period, 2:31, Canadiens 5-0: Mike Cammalleri just sent hats flying onto the ice with his third goal of the night and first hat-trick in a Habs uniform. The Bell Centre is rocking! I haven’t heard it this loud since the 2008 playoffs.
Second period, 3:53, Canadiens 4-0: A couple of ex-Bruins just burned the Bruins and the Canadiens are up 4-0 here.
Glen Metropolit tipped in a Hal Gill shot from the point and the rout is on here at the Bell Centre.
Second period, 6:27, Canadiens 3-0: Matt Hunwick misplayed a bounce off the back boards, then Tim Thomas did the same in front of the net and Mike Cammallerri was more than happy to oblige, taking the puck and scoring easily for his second goal of the game and a 3-0 Habs lead.
The crowd is on Thomas bad now with the “Thooommmaaass” chants. Canadiens forward Andrei Kostitisyn just got taken off the ice and appears to be in quite a bit of pain.
Second period, 8:40, Canadiens 2-0: Martin Brodeur and Alexander Ovechkin were just some of the slew of celebrities wishing the Habs a happy birthday on the the biggest jumbotron these eyes have ever seen.
Second period, 9:12, Canadiens 2-0: The ghosts of the old Forum were apparently brought back too at the Bell Centre tonight!
Second period, 11:50, Canadiens 2-0: The Bruins are unraveling here and a timeout may be in order. After failing to score on their two-man advantage they allowed the Habs to get a 2-on-1 rush the other way. Tomas Plekanac missed a breakaway but the Habs kept buzzing and Mike Cammalleri put it home for a 2-0 lead.
Plekanec and Andrei Kostitisyn got the helpers.
Second period, 14:26, Canadiens 1-0: Maxim Lapierre just took a really dumb penalty and pushed Marc Savard after the whistle sending the Bruins on their second power play. This will be a two-man advantage too as Jaroslav Spacek is in the box too.
Second period, 18:30, Canadiens 1-0: We’re underway here in the second period where the Canadiens are trying to win on their 100th birthday.
End of first period, Canadiens 1-0: The Canadiens to the surprise of many, lead the Bruins after one period of play here at the Bell Centre 1-0.
After playing last night and getting pummeled by the Sabres 6-2, many figured the well-rested Bruins would take advantage of a possibly flat Habs team after these ceremonies here, but give Montreal credit, they channeled the energy from the crowd and ceremonies into their game.
I am headed down for the best hot dogs in the NHL in the press eating area here at the Bell Centre. Toasted and buttered buns. Mmmmm! Stay with us for upcoming second-period action.
First period, 2:43, Canadiens 1-0: Blake Wheeler just got called for tripping and the Habs are on their second power play. They’re 0-for-1 so far.
First period, 4:30, Canadiens 1-0: Ryan O’Byrne is headed to the penalty box for interference and the Bruins are on their first power play. They were 1-for-3 Wednesday night.
First period, 8:32, Canadiens 1-0: That was surprising that the Bruins allowed the Canadiens to score there because they had just killed off the Montreal power play brilliantly and Marco Sturm even had a shorthanded breakaway.
There was a lot of traffic in front of Tim Thomas, though, and he didn’t have much of a chance.
First period, 11:30, Canadiens 1-0: Jaroslav Spacek just ripped one from the blue line right past a screened Tim Thomas. Scott Gomez and former Bruin Glen Metropolit had the helpers.
First period, 13:34: David Krejci is in the sin bin for hooking and the Habs are on their first power play.
First period, 14:25: I was surprised the Habs didn’t trot out Montreal native Ray Bourque during the ceremonies.
First period, 17:05: We’re finally playing some hockey here at a packed and raucous Bell Centre.
8:18 p.m.: Wow! Can the Montreal Canadiens put on a ceremony or what? The Habs just had their final Centennial birthday party and what a party it was! Gordie Howe, Guy Lafleur, Patrick Roy and Jean Beliveau on the ice together. Enough said. Just about ready for game time folks, so enjoy!
5:55 p.m.: Bonsoir! Montreal is abuzz right now and the lines are backed up outside the Bell Center as they prepare to open the doors for what is expected to be a two-hour long ceremony celebrating the Canadiens 100th anniversary. The Centennial of this storied franchise comes to a conclusion on Friday, 100 years after the 24-time Stanley Cup champions started playing on Dec. 4, 1909.
The Bruins already came in here a year ago and ruined the start of the Centennial celebration, spoiling Patrick Roy night. But as head coach Claude Julien pointed out after the Bruins’ game day skate on Friday, this is first and foremost about getting two points in the standings and taking over first place again, then paying respect to the tradition of this franchise and what it’s brought to the game of hockey.
?Some people might look at this as a chance for our team to spoil the [Canadiens] party, but I don?t think look at it that way — and I?ve told our team not to look at that way either,” said Julien, a former Habs coach. “It’s something you have to respect. This team has been in the league for 100 years. This is the game, and you have to respect that. When you’ve been part of this organization, you probably understand a little better.
?My message to the guys is to respect what’s going on here today, because it’s something special. At the same time, let’s remember that we have a game to play. We’ve got to focus on our game and our game plan. If we want to get back in first place, that’s what we need to do tonight.?
The Bruins will have former Canadiens forward Steve Begin leading the stretches on the center ice faceoff circle. Begin, as I wrote on Thursday, is pretty amped up for Friday’s game and the historic celebration.
On that note, so is your humble hockey scribe here. I just finished prerecording the latest edition of the Inside Hockey radio show that I host every Saturday from 2-4 p.m. ET on NHL Home Ice and the Team 990 in Montreal. We interviewed the legendary Hall of Fame hockey writer Russ Conway who covered the Bruins for almost 50 years and obviously he has plenty of stories to tell of the Bruins-Habs rivalry.
He told one of walking across the old Boston Garden ice with Don Cherry and Maurice “The Rocket” Richard following the “Last Hurrah,” when they closed the old barn down with an exhibition between the Bruins and Habs. Russ said it’s moments like those he treasures. Nights like this are why we do this job, and why I, too, feel blessed to be doing it!
Old friend Hal Gill is expected to be in the lineup for the Habs on Friday, so here’s what the lines and defensive pairings should look like:
Blake Wheeler–Marc Savard–Byron Bitz
Marco Sturm–Patrice Bergeron–Mark Recchi
Vladimir Sobotka–David Krejci–Michael Ryder
Shawn Thornton–Steve Begin–Daniel Paille
Zdeno Chara–Derek Morris
Andrew Ference–Dennis Wideman
Mark Stuart–Matt Hunwick
Mike Cammalleri–Tomas Plekanec–Andrei Kostitsyn.
Tom Pyatt–Scott Gomez–Ryan White
Max Pacioretty–Glen Metropolit–Travis Moen
Matt D’Agostini–Maxim Lapierre–Sergei Kostitsyn
Jaroslav Spacek–Roman Hamrlik
Ryan O’Byrne–Paul Mara
Josh Gorges–Hal Gill