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tantas Saudades...

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Recently, when the Boston Bruins defeated the once-mighty Ottawa Senators (once-mighty, yes, as early as days before the game, that is...) and the Bruins did so without top forwards and scoring threats Marc Savard, Patrice Bergeron and Chuck Kobasew in the line-up, I thought back to 1992 instantly.

For that was the year when, the Bruins -without Cam Neely, Ray Bourque or Craig Janney (the three players responsible for much of their success from 1988 up to that point)- managed to upset the supposedly mighty Montreal Canadiens! Those same inane Canadiens who would win (through the backdoor) the Stanley Cup in 1993 - the year the Bruins were the favorites to take it. And the fact of the matter is that the B's would also defeat them in 1994 - when the Habs were, thus, defending "champions" then...!  The Bruins, without any of their top stars (Dave Poulin was leading the troops then; but he'd retire after the 1993 great team somehow did not achieve to the level called for by its tremendous potential) those 1992 Bruins, yes, actually swept the Canadiens in four straight games that year - with, of all people, Rick Bowness as their head coach! (Bowness' highlight from his Boston days, and his entire coaching career as a matter of fact, quite clearly...!)

Obscure players such as Jim Wiemer and Peter Douris had their moment of glory then also: sticking it to overrated Canadiens (times do not change, it seems...) and proving once again that ANYTHING can happen in the wild world of sports...!

Too bad the RIGHT thing doesn't happen more often though!

Such are the "unponderables" in sports - and in life itself, verily...

Below: the only Bruins player who was there
in both 1992 and 2008: forward Glen Murray.


Only fitting to have a snapshot of Glen Murray at the beginning and at the end there; he was there, as a talented rookie full of promise, in 1992...

And he is there again, now, as a veteran who can still provide some offense and solid play on both ends of the ice.

Back in 1992, Murray was a solid replacement for the injured Cam Neely.

And it totally took the Canadiens by surprise too!


Bruins' Thomas Stops 34 Shots to Shut Out Senators 4-0

Mar 29, 10:19 PM (ET) Email this Story

Box Score | Recap | Game Log

BOSTON (AP) -With one week to go in the regular season, the Boston Bruins are playing like they deserve a berth in the playoffs.

"It's step up or go home," goalie Tim Thomas said after shutting out the Ottawa Senators 4-0 Saturday. "Fortunately, we seem to be stepping up."

Thomas stopped 34 shots for his third shutout of the season, and David Krejci had a goal and two assists to help the Bruins briefly move into seventh place in the Eastern Conference. Philadelphia beat the New York Islanders later Saturday night, giving the Flyers 91 points - one more than the Bruins.

The Washington Capitals were in ninth, three points behind the Flyers.

"We're going in the right direction, but so many things can change so quickly with so few games left," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "I don't know what it's going to take, but we have to keep going here until we clinch a spot."

Martin Gerber stopped 27 shots for Ottawa, which won 13 of its first 14 games this season but just 13 of its last 36.

"Thank goodness we had the great start, to be competitive now," Senators coach Bryan Murray said. "We're just not playing at that level now and other teams are playing at a better level than they were early on."

Fifth-place Ottawa, which has won once in its last five games, could still earn home ice in the first round - or miss the playoffs entirely.

"It's a possibility," forward Daniel Alfredsson said. "We know we could lose all three and Washington wins out and we could be out. And then we don't deserve to be in the playoffs, it's as simple as that."

Alfredsson acknowledged that the Senators hadn't been playing well for a while. The last three games will be "kind of a test for us to see what character we have as we head into the playoffs," he said.

Krejci assisted on the Bruins' second and third goals, then added one of his own with 55 seconds left in the game when he got the puck in front of the net and put it past Gerber. Krejci has two goals and five assists in his last three games.

"That's what we need from him," Bruins captain Zdeno Chara said. "He doesn't panic with the puck."

P.J. Axelsson and Marco Sturm scored 3½ minutes apart in the second period, and Shane Hnidy made it 3-0 on a short-handed slap shot 73 seconds into the third.

The goals were celebrated on the video screen by about a half-dozen U.S. Marines at Camp Taqaddum in Iraq, watching from just west of Fallujah thanks to a video conference set up by the Freedom Calls Foundation. Between the first and second periods, former Bruin Cam Neely answered their questions.

The Bruins took the lead with 4:24 gone in the second when Glen Metropolit dug the puck out of the corner and fed it to Axelsson, who one-timed it over Gerber's glove. Sturm made it 2-0 after Krejci swiped at a rebound and the puck squirted across the crease. Sturm backhanded it into the empty net even as defenseman Anton Volchenkov dove head-first into the net to try to stop it. ^


The game was delayed for a few minutes in the first period to replace one of the plexiglass boards behind the Senators' goal. ... Bruins forward Jeremy Reich left the game with a head injury and did not return after taking a shoulder to the head from Chris Neil in the first period. Julien said he will make the trip to Buffalo and will be a game-time decision Sunday night. The Bruins called up Jeff Hoggan on an emergency basis to make the trip to Buffalo in case Reich can't play. ... Ottawa's Jesse Winchester, who signed as a free agent out of Colgate, played his first NHL game. ... The Bruins signed defenseman Jeff Penner.

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