Bruins Go Down In Double OT Game One Loss

The Bruins dropped game one of their second round series with the Montreal Canadiens at the Garden last night, falling 4-3 in double overtime. The Bruins had their chances to win this one, but couldn’t get the big goal when it counted.

As predictable as the sun coming up, Mr Bruins Dan Shaughnessy writes about ghosts and fear and worry this morning, while in his own paper, Fluto Shinzawa writes that if the Bruins just keep playing as they did last night, they’ll be fine. That opinion seems to be the consensus of most of the other writers who actually follow hockey, such as DJ Bean, Joe McDonald, Steve Conroy.

Get all the coverage from last night at BruinsLinks.com If you’re looking for Bruins playoff tickets visit our ticket page.

Bruins’ radio voice Goucher thinks this is how playoff hockey should be – Bill Doyle spoke to Dave Goucher prior to last night’s game one.

TV coverage of Donald Sterling saga was top-notch – Chad Finn applauds the coverage by TNT, NBA TV and ESPN this week on the racist comments by the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers.

EPIX – A network available online and on many portable and streaming devices will be premiering a special on David Ortiz entitled “David Ortiz: In the Moment” on July 17th.

The documentary follows the nine-time MLB All-Star, three-time World Series champion and Red Sox legend during the past two seasons, including Boston’s championship run last fall and the drama on and off the field that the nation witnessed throughout a very emotional run to the title for both the city and the club.

For more on how to get EPIX and see the documentary, click the link above.

Bruins Window Slamming Shut

They’re wasting Tom Brady’s Zdeno Chara’s prime!

He has maybe 3 or 4 years left at the very most and they don’t have a replacement on the roster yet! What are they going to do when Brady Chara retires????  He doesn’t have enough help! Belichick Chiarelli has been wasting draft picks and instead going for system players! Sure, Robert Kraft Jeremy Jacobs spends to the cap every year, but he still cheaps out when it comes to putting his team over the top.

The window is slamming shut! If they don’t win another Super Bowl Stanley Cup then the entire Belichick/Brady Chiarelli/Chara era will have been a major disappointment!

The Patriots Bruins didn’t do enough in free agency at the trade deadline and it will come back to haunt them.

The Patriots Bruins pretend like they don’t get calls don’t flop and yet they are the worst offenders in the league! The Denver Broncos Montreal Canadiens play a style that that is going to give YOU fits and you homers always think that Tom Brady Tuukka Rask is better than Peyton Manning Carey Price when really most objective people think otherwise.

We can play this game all day. Sports radio and columns have really just become Mad Libs. Let’s trot out a storyline and just fill in the blanks. BOOM. Column or segment, DONE.

Can’t we just enjoy what promises to be an intense, emotional and exhausting series without all the ancillary angst and storylines?

It starts tonight. Get all the coverage (much of it very good) at BruinsLinks.com.

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It was interesting monitoring Twitter yesterday afternoon as reporters scrambled to report first that the Red Sox game last night had been postponed due to rain – many reported it before the club officially announced it – and then about the double-header scheduled for today. The Rays were complaining about it, and saying that it wasn’t official, even after the Red Sox had announced the schedule for today.

What we didn’t know, or at least wasn’t clearly explained, was that the Red Sox and Cubs have special rules when it comes to rescheduling games.

Zobrist: After rainout, Sox pushed doubleheader on Rays

But, the teams will return to Fenway today for a day/night doubleheader because none of that mattered. According to the Collective Bargaining Agreement, the Red Sox have the final say in this matter and they wanted to play two Thursday.

“We were told that in the Basic Agreement there is a grey area for teams like Boston and Chicago (Cubs) to basically exercise their own right to do what they want to do. So that’s what they did. Major League Baseball told us it was (the Red Sox) decision and they chose to do a doubleheader (today),” Rays second baseman Ben Zobrist said.

Interestingly, I can’t find this in any of the local newspapers/sites. It might be there somewhere, but my first look through didn’t show it anywhere, it was mostly about how the Red Sox tried as a courtesy to work something out, but ultimately it was decided to play today. (Which is also in doubt.)

The other part of this is that last night was supposed to be Dustin Pedroia bobblehead night, and while the team says they don’t have space tp store the bobbleheads in Fenway, the real reason is likely the uproar that would come from those who thought they were getting one last night and it turned out to be pushed off weeks or months away. Bobbleheads are serious business.

Bruins Set To Flop Around Against Canadiens Tomorrow Night

I guess we shouldn’t be all that shocked, but now Boston sports radio and online columnists are taking their talking points from Montreal blogs?

Dive Files: The Bruins are the NHL’s uncontested emperors of embellishment

I’ve heard Felger and Mazz, Mike Mutnansky, Adam Jones and, over on Boston.com, Eric Wilbur tell us that the Bruins can’t talk about Montreal flopping because they do it just as much.

I guess that’s your storyline for this series, for them at least.

The series begins tomorrow night with game one at TD Garden at 7:30. The game will be seen only on the NBC Sports Network.

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Nice post from the Shaughnessy Watch blog on the latest from the Globe columnist.

Color Him Wrong

Comparing Adam Silver to Kenesaw Mountain Landis might not have been the best comparison.

Dennis and Callahan are in all their glory on the Donald Sterling story. There’s nothing those guys enjoy more than a good discussion on race. (Well, except perhaps talking about prison rape, but I digress.) Whenever Gerry Callahan can mention Al Sharpton’s name every five minutes, it’s a good day for him.

Briefly – Like just about everyone else, I was incredibly impressed with Adam Silver yesterday. Maybe my expectations were low coming in, but his authority came across in a strong way.  That press conference was a great moment for the future of the NBA.

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According to the network, Jerry Remy missed last night’s game due to “similar symptoms” to a stomach flu that a “few members of NESN’s Red Sox traveling crew have recently suffered from.”

While that could be completely legitimate, the red flags aways go up when Remy misses a game, and especially when the wording is a bit ambiguous like this was.

Steve Lyons filled in for Remy last night, and he was pretty much as we remember in the booth. He did seem to have some good chemistry with Don Orsillo, who has shown the ability to work with just about anyone. Lyons talks alot in the booth, which could’ve been an adjustment for Orsillo, but they worked pretty well together. They had some light moments, of which there actually haven’t been that many of thus far this season due to obvious reasons.

They said that Remy would be back in the booth for tonight, so we’ll keep an eye on that.

Bruins Take Wings To Brink, Jared Not Doing Jerry Any Favors

The Bruins pushed the Detroit Red Wings to the brink of elimination after a hard-fought 3-2 OT win at Joe Louis Arena last night. Boston now leads the series 3-1 and has a chance to close things out tomorrow at home.

That 3:00pm game will NOT be broadcast on NESN (the channel will still have pre and post game coverage, as will CSNNE) but will instead be on NBC.

Get all the Bruins coverage today and this weekend at BruinsLinks.com.

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The Jared Remy situation is not going away quietly. The son of Red Sox NESN color analyst Jerry Remy isn’t doing his father any favors with his reported letters to Boston Herald columnist Margery Eagan and reporter Laurel J. Sweet.

Jared Remy’s jailhouse screed: Leave my dad out of this

The younger Remy was also in the news recently for his reported attack on another inmate earlier this month.

Meanwhile Jerry Remy continues on the air on NESN. I’ve made my case on this already, and it seems like what I feared is happening – this isn’t going away, and the more incidents that Jared has while in prison, and the more information that comes out  – does that have an impact on how people are viewing Jerry Remy on the Red Sox broadcasts?

I think Jerry Remy has actually been very good this season – he seems to have picked things up a notch in terms of his analysis, and while he’s still goofing with Don Orsillo at times, much of the ancillary stuff that was getting annoying in the past has been eliminated or toned down.

It still feels like this is going to come to a head at some point and not end well for Jerry Remy. Does NESN ever say “enough?”

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Patriots cleared of mishandling injury reports

There was quite a bit made out of statements from former Patriots Brandon Spikes and Aqib Talib on the matter of the team and their reporting of injuries. Ben Volin reports that there has been found to be nothing to those allegations.

The allegations were played up quite a bit in the national media:

I’m sure all these will be cleared up now…

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It’s cute that Christopher Gasper thinks we should give the Red Sox the benefit of the doubt because they’ve had lots of injuries and have not been able to get their full lineup out on the field.

I haven’t listened to a ton of sports radio as of late, but in the afternoons I’m finding that the renewed Dale and Holley show is much more appealing than Felger and Mazz, who every time I’ve turned in have been ripping the Bruins in Patriots-like fashion. Can’t be all puppies and unicorns.

I’ve checked in on The Big Show Unfiltered from time to time, and it’s nice to have that there as an option as well. After a lot of buzz at launch time, it will be interesting to see how things develop there and if they can keep is going and growing.

I wonder how many more hockey columns Mr Bruin, Dan Shaughnessy will have for us in the coming weeks. Bruins fans would just as well have Shaughnessy continue to ignore their team.

If Roger Goodell hadn’t messed with the schedule, we’d be having the NFL draft this week. Now it is still two weeks away. Now there’s talk of extended the draft to FOUR days in the future. Goodell seems determined to kill the golden goose by trying to mess up as many thing good things as he can. They’re just going to keep pushing and pushing, Thursday night games…when do Tuesday night games start? More playoff teams? Why not have all teams make the playoffs? 18 game schedule? Let’s for an even 20. Team in London? Let’s go to Moscow while we’re at it.

Bruins Again Unimpressive in Dominating Win

Just a quick post today, as I’m in the middle of a hectic real-life week…

For the second straight game, the Boston Bruins took it to the Detroit Red Wings, and emerged with a convincing 3-0 shutout win. The Bruins now hold a 2-1 series lead.

It seems though, that the Bruins have reached Patriots-level analysis standards. For some people *coughFelgerMazzcough* every win is picked over for faults and deemed to be “meh” -unimpressive. Power play goal? You SHOULD get those. Caron goal? Lucky. The third goal was empty net. They were lucky to win!

Now, I realize these clowns are the minority, but they’re also the most influential people in the market, at least Felger is. It’s annoying. It’s repetitive (as are my complaints, I’m sure), unimaginative and it makes them look dumb. The latter issue they apparently have no problems with. Mazz is still worried about the 2013 Red Sox.

After last week’s Shaughnessy column breakdown where it was pointed out that the lead columnist for Boston sports had not written a column about the Bruins in over 100 columns, further research showed that his last Bruins column had been after the Blackhawks beat the Bruins for the Stanley Cup. He hadn’t written about the team since then despite the Bruins having been the best team in the NHL this regular season. Naturally, when the Bruins lost game one to the Red Wings, guess who had a column on the Bruins the next day?  Lame.

Get the coverage from last night’s Bruins win at BruinsLinks.com.

The Red Sox were pounded by the Yankees last night at Fenway Park, as Jacoby Ellsbury took it to his former team. The fan reaction to Ellsbury was mixed, with plenty of boos pregame and for his first at-bat, but then after a video tribute by the Red Sox, there were some cheers of appreciation for what he did here.

Check all the Red Sox news at RedSoxLinks.com.

Playoff Hockey Starts Tonight For Boston

The Bruins look to start their return to the Stanley Cup Finals with the opening game of their first round series against the Detroit Red Wings tonight at TD Garden.

This will be the first meeting in the playoffs between these two original six franchises since 1957. Prior to that, these teams were regular postseason opponents.

Red Wings, Bruins rekindle playoff rivalry that blazed in 1940s, ’50s – Gregg Krupa in The Detroit News looks at the history between these two iconic franchises.

Andy Brickley, Jack Edwards see Bruins winning – Chad Finn has the NESN broadcast duo feeling that the Bruins will take this series.

Edwards excited for another Bruins playoff series – Bill Doyle has more from Edwards.

You can get all of the local Bruins coverage at BruinsLinks.com.

We went over the NESN coverage yesterday afternoon, CSNNE will once again also have pre and post-game shows. As in the last few years, the shows will be led by Michael Felger and Tony Amonte, and Joe Haggerty, Mike Giardi and Kevin Walsh will have reports from the games.

Due to CSN’s relationship with NBC, the station will also have access to and interviews with the broadcast team of Jeremy Roenick, Keith Jones, Pierre McGuire, Mike “Doc” Emrick and Ed Olczyk.

Here is the schedule for CSN’s coverage:

  • Game 1 Boston vs. Detroit, Friday, April 18th – CSN Pre-Game Live @7PM & Post-Game Live following game
  • Game 2 Boston vs. Detroit, Sunday, April 20th – CSN Pre-Game Live @2:30PM & Post-Game Live following game
  • Game 3 Boston vs. Detroit, Tuesday, April 22nd – CSN Pre-Game Live @7PM & Post-Game Live following game
  • Game 4 Boston vs. Detroit, Thursday, April 24th –CSN Pre-Game Live @7:30PM & Post-Game Live following game
  • Additional Games 5, 6 and 7 If Necessary; CSN Pre & Post-Game Live schedule TBD

Bruins First Round Series Coverage on NESN and NBC

NESN will have regionally exclusive coverage of up to five first round playoff games between the Bruins and Detroit Red Wings.

In addition to first round game coverage, NESN will produce one-hour of pre and post-game shows before and after Boston Bruins playoff games throughout the playoffs.

Games two and five (if needed) of the first round will be broadcast on NBC. The rest of the games in the series will be on NESN.

NESN’s Bruins Eastern Conference Quarterfinal Schedule

Day Date Game Game Broadcast Network NESN Coverage Begins  Game Time
Friday 4/18 Game #1 NESN 6:00 PM 7:30 PM
Sunday 4/20 Game #2 NBC 2:00 PM 3:00 PM
Tuesday 4/22 Game #3 NESN 6:30 PM 7:30 PM
Thursday 4/24 Game #4 NESN 7:00 PM 8:00 PM
Saturday 4/26 Game #5* NBC **2:00 PM 3:00 PM
Monday 4/28 Game #6* NESN TBD TBD
Wednesday 4/30 Game #7* NESN TBD TBD

* = If necessary

** = Game 5 pre and post-game coverage on NESNplus

NESN also announced that that Bruins regular season averaged a 5.0 rating over the 71 games that NESN broadcast. They’re calling this a ratings record for a full season, noting that last year’s shortened season averaged a 6.3 rating in the 41 games NESN carried (out of 48 total).

The Red Sox will be bumped over to NESNplus when the games conflict.

Red Sox Games on NESNplus in April

Day Date Red Sox Opponent Game Time
Friday 4/18 vs. Baltimore Orioles 7:00 PM
Tuesday 4/22 vs. New York Yankees 7:00 PM
Thursday 4/24 vs. New York Yankees 7:00 PM
Wednesday * 4/30 vs. Tampa Bay Rays 7:00 PM

 

Celtics Close Out Season of Change

The Celtics wrapped up the regular season last night with a loss to the playoff-bound Washington Wizards at TD Garden.

As with much of the season the Celtics had moments of competitiveness, but faded and eventually fell at the end.

They did what most people wanted them to do this season – lose – but perhaps didn’t even do enough of that. It was an odd season in many aspects. You had many fans and talk show hosts and columnists outright rooting (are they supposed to do that???) for the team to lose. Then had others in the media who were critical of the team for its effort and execution at times.

If you’re looking big picture, things look pretty good for this franchise. The stockpile of first round picks is well documented, they have a good shot at a top player this June should they choose to use their pick, have assets to trade if an opportunity presents itself (unlike many others, I’m not big on the Kevin Love bandwagon) and have some decent talent on the present roster to build around. They’ve also got a young coach who is already drawing praise from around the league, and who will no doubt use his first NBA season as a learning experience. They have a $10.3 million trade exception which can be used in a sign-and-trade or straight trade, but needs to be used before July 12.

In Jared Sullinger and Kelly Olynyk they have two young players who at a minimum can be serviceable big men in the NBA. In his second season and coming off back surgery Sullinger averaged 13.3 ppg and 8.1 rpg. Olynyk had his ups and downs throughout the season, but in the last three games of the season he scored 25, 28 and 24 points.

They’ve got Rondo – whether they choose to keep him or use him as a trade asset. They have a decision to make on Avery Bradley, who will be a restricted free agent this summer, and who suffered through another injury-plagued season, but averaged 14.9 ppg in 60 games. Jeff Green remains maddeningly inconsistent, but he played all 82 games and led the team in scoring at 16.9 ppg. We’ve seen that he’s probably best suited to being a 3rd or 4th option on a club where he doesn’t have to be The Man, but can be a complementary piece. He could be used in a trade. Many of the other contracts on the team are designed to be flexible enough to use in a trade (non-guaranteed, year to year, etc).

It’s setting up to be a very interesting offseason, and while ownership promises “fireworks”, Danny Ainge just sees it as an offseason where there is a lot of work to be done.

I’m just glad that the games have been played, and we don’t have to hear about tanking and all the cute phrases that go along with it from the local sports radio and television wags.

While the season on the floor was tough, we got some great writing and coverage of the team this season. Baxter Holmes has done a terrific job with both features and the game-to-game coverage. He and Gary Washburn make a great duo for the Globe. At the Herald, Steve Bulpett and Mark Murphy did their usual outstanding job, with Bulpett remaining one of my favorite media personalities in town, and I consider him still somewhat underrated despite 30 years on the job. Jay King at MassLive.com is part of a tremendous young team at that website. Others on the beat – Ben Rohrbach of WEEI.com, A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE, and Chris Forsberg of ESPNBoston.com all added insight and information to the season.

I think the Celtics beat overall is the best and most professionally covered of any of the four major sports in town. Very little bombast or “look at me” types here. The Celtics blogging community is passionate and strong as well, with sites like CelticsBlog and RedsArmy leading the way.

The broadcast teams – Mike Gorman remains the gold standard in town. He makes whomever is with him sound great. For some reason Tommy Heinsohn has detractors and critics who cringe at his enthusiasm and support of the franchise that he has been a part of for almost 60 years. I’ll defend him to the death. The guest analysts – P.J. Carlesimo, Jackie MacMullan, even Danny Ainge and Chris Herren each brought something to the telecasts. On the radio side, Sean Grande also had many partners thoughout the season as Cedric Maxwell at times also moved over to the television side. If there was a weak spot, this might be it. Bringing in the likes of Rich Keefe and Adam Jones to sit beside Grande was curious – though it was likely a cost-saving move to bring on someone already on the station payroll.

Overall it was a rough season on the court, but we can look forward to better times ahead, and for an eventful offseason.

Shaughnessy – The Last 100 Columns

I’m not sure why I subjected myself to this, but I took some time to peruse the last 100 columns that Dan Shaughnessy has written.

This 100 columns dates back to October 14, 2013. So in almost exactly 6 months, he’s written 100 columns.

58 are on the Red Sox. Given that they won the World Series at the start of this timeframe and have held spring training and the start of the season since, it’s natural they would get the most mentions, especially when you consider special editions for the World Series Champions and Season Previews. Still, that’s a lot. Of the 58, 37 were positive or mostly positive. 11 were neutral. 10 were negative or negative/neutral.

20 are on the Patriots. Of those, I deemed 12 to be completely negative. 4 were neutral, 2 were positive. 1 was stupid. (The 12/10/13 parody of how the Patriots could be Super Bowl champs.) and 1 was negative/positive – the Darrelle Revis signing column where he lauded the move, but still took all his usual shots.

5 were “thoughts” columns. I was actually surprised there weren’t more of these.

4 were on Harvard during the NCAA tournament, and his transparent attempt to make Tommy Amaker the next Boston College coach.

2 were on the Celtics

2 on the Super Bowl

2 on general NFL topics

1 on the Texans (victory lap)

1 on the Orioles

1 on UMass

1 on MLB HoF voting

1 on himself (Write not Root)

1 on the Seahawks (Marshawn Lynch and not talking to the media, really)

1 on High School athletics

0 were on the Bruins. (Bruins fans probably prefer it that way.)

The full list:

More #Hotsportztakes Headed To Boston.com – Mazz Returns!

As The Boston Globe splits from Boston.com, the latter continues its transformation into a collection of #hotsportztakes with the return of Tony Massarotti to its bandwidth.

Now that none of the Globe content appears on Boston.com, and none of the Globe writers blog on Boston.com any longer, it really has become something of a wasteland for the web version of sports talk radio.

One of the few exceptions being of course, Finn’s own blog, which carries a very different tone from the majority of the site.

Here are the local media columns for today:

High praise, ratings for NCAA Tournaments – Chad Finn hits across many topics this morning, including the mens and women’s hoop tournaments, Danny Ainge’s turn as color analyst on CSNNE, and NFL draft programming.

Will a rookie come out of Woods at Masters? – Bill Doyle has thoughts from CBS analysts and executives on the Masters programming and storylines.

There will be much in the way of local programming heading up to the Boston Marathon. CSNNE, for example will feature a week of heartfelt vignettes that will air in Chevrolet SportsNet Central and online at CSNNE.com/runningstrong from Sunday, April 13th through Sunday, April 20th. The week will culminate with a 30-minute TV special titled Running Strong scheduled to air on Sunday, April 20th at 5PM.

Here are the segments which will be combined into the 30-minute special:

A TEAM REACTS (Sunday, April 13th)

A recap of how the day unfolded for the Boston Bruins who were scheduled to play a game later that night. Hockey reporters/analysts Mike Giardi, Michael Felger and Kevin Paul Dupont review the chronology as to how the team found out, their reaction, and all that happened right through their next home game which commenced with Ray Rancourt’s powerful pre-game National Anthem.

GROUND ZERO (Monday, April 14th)

Athletic store Marathon Sports was the site of the actual bombing and the store has since become a pseudo shrine to remember the events of the day and honor the victims and heroes. Shane O’Hara, Manager of the Boston store location, talks to Comcast SportsNet with a personal recount of the day, how the business has done its best to be “Boston Strong,” and his participation in the Red Sox parade ceremony later in the Spring.

RUNNING STRONG: REMEMBERING THE DAY (Tuesday, April 15th)

Airing on the 1-year anniversary of the 2013 Marathon, this segment will recap how the day and week unfolded with a focus on how the tragic events impacted the Celtics, Patriots, Red Sox, and Bruins.

INSPIRED TO ACT (Wednesday, April 16th)

Comcast SportsNet talks with two doctors from Brigham and Women’s – Dr. Kelli O’Laughlin and Physicians’ Assistant McKenzie Bollen – who both witnessed and experienced trauma that day.  The two also talk about how they were inspired to train for and run in this year’s Marathon.

A NEW LIFE (Thursday, April 17th)

Heather Abbott lost a leg in the bombing and her life was changed forever. Comcast SportsNet visits her home in Newport, RI where she has recovered and remains strong.

AN INNOCENT SURVIVOR (Friday, April 18th)

Stoneham resident Mark Fucarile was another victim who lost a leg in the bombing. Mark talks about his recovery, how this affected his 6-year old son, and how he was set to be married soon after the marathon and will finally wed his fiancé later this month. David Portnoy, Founder of the “Barstool Sports” website which caters to the ‘everyman’ like Mark, talks about his efforts to help Mark with fundraising.

THE WITNESS (Saturday, April 19th)

Boston Globe Sports Editor Steve Silva captured the most powerful video of the explosions and ran towards the danger. Comcast SportsNet interviews Steve about how he remembers the day and talks about how he was inspired to train for and run this year’s marathon.

THE LAST RUN (Sunday, April 20th)

Boston Marathon Legends Dick Hoyt and his son Rick who has Cerebral Palsy have run the Boston Marathon together for decades and have become an iconic part of the annual event. 2013 was going to be their final time running the Marathon, but in light of the events, they will now run one final time in 2014.