Thursday, May 23, 2013

The Best Day of the Offseason

It's day I look forward to at the conclusion of each season's last game game, be it in the National Championship game or the last game of the regular season. What day must I be talking about? Well it's not opening day quite yet, but it's the next best thing: schedule release day.
Photo from BU's 4-2 win over Boston College at Agganis
last year.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Today, BU put out their 2014 hockey schedule and it is now that we all get to start planing road trips for next year. Of course most people who read this blog already knew basically the entire schedule with a few dates and bits and pieces missing here and there.

Anyway, the official, no guessing when games will be played schedule is out. The card is highlighted by some big name schools such as Wisconsin and North Dakota (2x) coming to Agganis. Also, there is the return of Red Hot Hockey for the fourth time with Cornell at Madison Square Garden, along with the annul Beanpot Tournament. BU gets BC in the first round, there. The last of the marquee non-confrence games is a trip to Michigan, where BU will face Michigan and Michigan State on back to back night in late October. That is a trip that I will in fact be making and am already highly looking forward to.

Of course, there is alway the Hockey East games, too. This year BU (and the rest of Hockey East) will play each other twice instead of three times and also welcome Notre Dame into the mix. BU will have to travel out to South Bend for a pair of games late in the season.

As reported earlier, BU will face Maine in Frozen Fenway, a game that I will say in advance I will NOT be attending.

Complete schedule is below.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Bavis Resigns

After getting back from baseball practice this morning, I was rather surprised to find out that assistant coach Mike Bavis had resigned at BU. This is according to a USHR report. He had held the same position for the last 15 years. Bavis played at BU in the early '90's and was on three Frozen Four teams.

Personally, I think the best replacement for Bavis would be Albi O'Connell. O'Connell was the lone captain of the 1999 BU squad. Currently, he is the assistant coach at Harvard. Before, he was at Northeastern, were he was able to land players like John Gaudreau and John Gillies, before both of them decommitted after then NU head coach Greg Cronin left the program.

More stories on Bavis:
The Terrier Hockey Fan Blog: Assistant Head Coach Bavis Departs
The Boston Hockey Blog's report

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Making Connections, Recapping Round One

Anyone who watched the Bruins-Leafs game last night and knows anything about BU hockey should easily make the connection to the 2009 National Championship Game. Trailing by two goals in the last minute... I think you know how this ends.

Anyway, last night I was lucky enough to be in the Garden for Game 7. Throughout the third period, I kept having flashbacks to that unforgettable game in Washington.

I'll start with the Nathan Horton Goal. The emotion that went through my body was a mirror of what I did when Zach Cohen scored in the National Championship Game to make in 3-2 Miami with 59 second left. I just kinda sat there and was though to myself "what if they hadn't given up the 4th (in Zach's case the third) goal?"

The scene far above the ice after Begeron's game winner in
overtime. (Photo by Matt Dresens) 
Then Lucic scored with 1:23 left and the first thing that came to mind was "oh, Ive seen something like this before, this cant possibly be happening again!"

Then bang. The image that has been going through my mind all day: the puck hitting the back of the net as a result of Bergeron's perfectly placed long ranger wrist shot with 50 second left on the clock. My reaction, well I just jumped into the arms of guy next to my in section 314, row 12. I have no clue who the guy was, but it did not matter. The place was so loud that the fog horn that goes off when the Bruins score could not be heard over the crowd. It was truly unbelievable to see that all unfold right in front of my eyes.

In '09 I distinctly remember my dad almost knocking the person next to him off the balcony after Nick Bonino scored the tying goal with 17 seconds left. We were sitting in row one of the balcony at the Verizon Center, then.

Maybe the coolest part of the night was the intermission between the third period and overtime. The Garden played "Don't Stop Believing" similarly to the BU band in 2009 did with about five minutes left in the third. The entire Garden faithful was sining along to not only that song, but a few others.

I had a strange calm feeling heading into the overtime that the Bruins would score. Not dissimilar to 2009.  The last comparison I'll make to the National Title game is after the OT goals were score and everyone was departing the stadiums and the walk down the stairs to street level. In DC, it was the "When BU Goes Marching In" chant all the way down the Verizon Center stairs. Last night, Bruins fans were yelling and I mean YELLING "We Want The Cup!" not only down the stairs, but out into the streets. My ears are (and I'm not making this up) still ringing as I type this.

Again, the only word to accurately describe how it felt to be able to attend both of those games would be: Unbelievable.

Terriers In The First Round
Nick Bonino was far and away the best Terrier in Round One. He tallied three goals and one assist in the seven game series with Detroit. His goal, the first Anaheim goal, in the Ducks 4-0 shutout of the Redwings in game three proved to be the game winner. He later won game five in overtime on a redirection.

Eric Gryba probably is the creator of the most controversial play of the playoffs to date. Here it is, you be the judge, did he contact the head?

Brian Strait, New York Islanders... Lost in six to Pittsburgh... 1 goal, 0 assists, 12 penalty minutes, and a +1 rating.

Matt Gilroy, New York Rangers... won in seven over Washington... Did not Play.

Kevin Shattenkirk, St. Louis Blues... Lost in six to LA... 0 goals, 1 assist, 6 penalty minutes, and a -1 rating.

Charlie Coyle, Minnesota Wild... Lost in five to Chicago... 0 goals, 2 assists, 2 penalty minutes, -4 rating.