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Boston Bruins Talk: Tuukka Rask Is the Clay Buckhholz Of Hockey

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Boston Bruins Talk: Is Pulling The Team Down

Boston Bruins are in a tight race for the playoffs with only a couple of weeks left in the regular season. The Bruins came out with a big win on Saturday against the New York Islanders without Tuukka Rask.

In that game backup goaltender Anton Khudobin was between the pipes as Tuukka Rask was out with a “lower body injury”. We have seen this before as last season he did not play in the teams last game as the year. He had the shits. I get it sometimes you eat some bad food and have can’t do much but they have medicine for that crap (pun intended). He should have played as it was the teams biggest game of the year and he said nah I am sitting this one out because I do not feel good.

This time around at least it was an injury. If he really was hurt than okay your hurt but if you are sore or “tired” he should be able to play through it. If Rask does not play Tuesday against the Predator’s then okay, he is really hurt. The only probably with that is that Zane McIntyre was recalled for Saturday’s game. He has already been re-assigned to Providence, which means that Rask will most likely play Tuesday.

An argument for his lack of play late in the season is that he is tired. Do not give me the he is tired BS, every other skater on the team has played just about every game. You do not hear Patrice Bergeron complain that he is tired.  Rask claims that he is “hurt”, or is it he just doen not want to play. He has been known to throw his team under the bus after a bad loss. That type of mentality is bad for the locker room. Teams play for their goalie and if the goalie does not trust the players then it can make for some bad chemistry in the locker room. That being said I have never been a big fan of his.

Tuukka is not an Elite goalie. He may be a very good one but he is not elite. Rask is not in the same category as Carey Price, Jonathan Quick and Henrik Lundqvist. Some may say look at his numbers and I say yes numbers wise he could be considered elite. The problem is that most of his numbers came when he had an elite defense in front of him. Also people might say what about this season? I would say yes this season he has been good. There were points of the season where he carried the team. I still do not think he can be considered elite.

Another reason I do not like him well more the Bruins front office, but he is getting payed $7 million to be a very good goalie. That is more than both Quick and Price.

Anton Khudobin Should Start Tuesday

Khudobin played very well on Saturday as the he only allowed one goal. I know he was not very good most of the season. Mostly due to the lack of drive the Bruins have for their backup’s. I still think that he should play Tuesday against the Nashville Predators. First I think he deserves it after Rask copped-out of the B’s biggest game of the year. Second if Rask really is injured and/or tired this will give him the rest he needs to be able to finish the rest of the season. Then play in the playoffs if the team can make it.

Justin is a Computer Networking student at Wentworth Institute of Technology and joined the Trifecta Network as an Editor in February of 2016 and is a guest on Down to the WIRE Sports Talk.

Boston Bruins

Fantasy Hockey Talk: Two Month Update

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There is snow on the ground and it feels like winter today.  What better time it is to talk Hockey!  More importantly I’m talking about Fantasy Hockey.  It has been a little over two months and things are really starting to ramp up.  There has been some injuries that have come and gone.  But nothing like last year’s Flu outbreak, or whatever that was.  If you have read my previous Fantasy Hockey Blog then you know I am one of those “Die Hard” Fantasy Hockey Fans.  Hey I just love Fantasy, I can’t get enough of it!

So yeah it has been two months and my Fantasy Team is steamrolling the competition.  I’m 8-1 in a Head 2 Head Weekly Points League.  This type of format is common.  What you do is add up the total points you’ve scored every day and at the end of the week if your total points for the week is greater than your opponent, you notch a Win for the week.  Easy, right?  Not so fast you can net negative points, mainly if your Goalie loses.  And players don’t play every single day, so you have figure out who to start when their team is playing.  Yeah it gets challenging but let me tell you the secret to my success.  My Roster, of course!

So yeah everyone on my Roster is playing well and here are some of the big names on my Fantasy Team.  Brad Marchand is tearing it up for me on the the ice.  He is having an unbelievable Season. He has 10 Goals and 12 Assists with 44 Shots on Goal, that’s 62 Fantasy Points for the year.  David Pastrnak is having an even better year than Marchand.  He has 14 Goals and 11 Assists with 76 Shots on Goal, that adds up to 72 Fantasy Points.  That is my top duo and they have been giving my opponents the “old one two.”

At Forward I also have Jonathan Huberdeau 75 Fantasy Points, Brayden Schenn 91 Fantasy Points, Patric Hornqvist 61 Fantasy Points, Vladislav Namestnikov 77 Fantasy Points, and James Neal 62 Fantasy Points.  These are the big play makers on my team.  All of them are having a great year.  If you are playing Fantasy Hockey I suggest you look to mirror my team and pick some of these guys up via trades.  You won’t be disappointed.  I have particularly like the way Nikolaj Ehlers has been playing.  He is my go to at the Utility Position when my starting Roster is stacked.  He has 12 Goals and 10 Assists with 78 Shots on Goal, that is 63 Fantasy Points.  Yeah he is having a career best.  I also like J.T. Miller at Utility.

On Defense I have Victor Hedman 44 Fantasy Points, Colton Parayko 41 Fantasy Points, Alex Goligoski 32 Fantasy Points, Aaron Ekblad 31 Fantasy Points, and lastly I have Johnny Boychuk 20 Fantasy Points.  Suffice to say I rely heavily on my Forwards to net me Points.  I had David Krejci but he has been injured.  I released him immediately, he just wasn’t a good fit for my Fantasy Team.  Marchand was injured briefly but I dodged a bullet as he is back to his usual form after that.  Other than that I really like the way everyone has been playing.  I mean seriously I have a stacked team, its been one of the better years for me, Fantasy wise.  Just look at those numbers!

For Goalies I rotate three of them around.  I have Tuukka Rask who has been my big “Achilles Heal” this year.  He just isn’t playing up to his talent.  He has only 6 Wins with a Save Percentage of .908 and Goals Allowed at 2.52, that has netted -8 Fantasy Points.  Yeah not good, they had to pull him.  Anton Khudobin has played better with 7 Wins and a .922 Save Percentage, that has netted 10 Fantasy Points.  I’m expecting Tuukka to play better the second half of the Season.  I do have Jonathan Quick who has 14 Wins and 27 Fantasy Points on the year.  Lastly I have Brian Elliott who has 9 Wins but has a net points of -15.  Ouch!  If he continues on this dreadful streak of negative points expect me to make some drastic changes.  Picking Goalies is just difficult in Fantasy Hockey.  It always is!

So that’s my Superstar Team, heavily populated by Forward Scoring Machines.  They have carried me so far; into almost Playoff contention.  That I think if you look at them deep down you will discover a good mix of Goal Scoring, Shots on Goal, and Assists.  It’s only been two months but if my Fantasy Team continues to out perform expect an expanded blog.  Maybe a blog each week?  We’ll see!  Oh yeah and “Don’t Poke the Bear.”  Cheers!

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Boston Bruins Consensus: Matt Beleskey Has To Go

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Boston Bruins Round Table: B’s Have Many Tough Decisions To Make As Roster

Nears Full Health

Boston Bruins have struggled to put together a full team and grow chemistry due to injuries. As of late they have nearing a fully healthy roster, now that David Backes, Jake Debrusk, and Anders Bjork are now all back from injury.

The biggest question is will Bruce stick with the kids or send them down and put in the vets. Where the Bruins are right now it looks like Bruce is leaning more towards the kids and was them to develop. Vets are still needed on the roster for guidance. As of today 12/8, the Bruins have moved back into third place in the Atlantic with a few games in hand as well. The kids are the one who has brought them this far so why change now.

What I would like to see the roster look like when fully healthy

Forwards:

Brad MarchandPatrice BergeronDavid Pastrnak

Jake Debrusk-David Krejci-Anders Bjork

Danton Heinen-David Backes-Peter Cehlarik

Ryan SpoonerRiley NashNoel Acciari

Defense:

Zdeno CharaCharlie McAvoy

Kevan MillerBrandon Carlo

Torey KrugAdam McQuaid

Goalies:

Tuukka Rask

Anton Khudobin

The Players To Be Sent Down/Traded

With the roster set, the Bruins will have to either send some guys back to Providence or even trade them. Sean Kuraly and Tim Schaller will most likely be sent down. Frank Vatrano is a bit of a toss-up. The best path for him would (should) be a trade. Vatrnao is a great skater with an unbelievable shot. There has just not been a breakout from him here in Boston. Also, he will have to go through waivers which means that a team will pick him up and the B’s get nothing in return.

The elephant in the room is Matt Beleskey, what happens to him. If he is sent down then that means Boston is paying a guy $3.8 million to play in the AHL. That is not going to happen. The only option is for a trade. This is the hard part due to Beleskey’modifieded no-trade clause.

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Boston Bruins Should Stick With The Hot Hand Of Anton Khudobin

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Dobby may have stolen the Starting Gig From Tuukka Rask

The Boston Bruins have been under a ton of scrutiny since the beginning of the season. One of the issues was, are the kids going to be any good, the other is what is the goaltending situation going to look like. That question has become easier in the past couple of games.

This season we have seen Tuukka Rask Struggle. Many are now questioning if he is an elite goalie still. The only problem with that is that he was never an elite goalie. During his time of success here he had a phenomenal defense in front of him. Now not so much except it seems that backup Anton Khudobin has not had a problem with the defense. Khudobin not only has the wins to deserve the starting role, he has the numbers as well.

In the month of November Tuukka Rask has played in 6 games. In those six games, his save percentage is a .898 and a save percentage of a 2.86.  On the season he has a 2.89 total save percentage in 12 games. The league leader among starters is Sergei Bobrovsky with a 2.02. Then we look at Dobby’s past 3 games in November where he has posted a .949 save percentage and 1.66 GAA.

Dobby has shown that he is still a viable back-up and right now he may even be the starter. Las game against the sharks he only allowed one goal and after being bombarded by 18 shots. In three of his last five games, Khudobin has allowed one goal.

Bostons next game on Wednesday against the red-hot Devils who currently sit in the first place if the Metropolitan division. Bruce Cassidy mat indeed elects Khudobin to be the starter but he as eluded that Tukkaa Rask will get the start. This would be a bad play. The starter should always go to the guy ho is hot not the guy that is supposed to be a top 10 goaltender.

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