Bruins Win Season Opener, Jack Edwards, and Coyotes Preview

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The reigning Eastern Conference Champion Boston Bruins beat the Dallas Stars 2-1 Thursday night at American Airlines Area.  New Bruins forward Brett Ritchie scored on his first shift giving the B’s a 1-0 lead.  ''You're not going to score on your first two shots very often," said Ritchie.  Last season, the former Stars forward scored four goals and had two assists in 53 games.  Thursday night Ritchie was on the Bruins third line and scored on his first shift as a B.  

Photo courtesy of nbcsports.com
The Bruins, who didn’t have a major splash in the off-season, signed Ritchie to a one-year deal for $1 million dollars.  Ritchie left the Stars to sign with the Bruins on Day One of NHL Free Agency.  The 26-year old Ritchie spent five seasons in Dallas after he was selected in the second round of the 2011 NHL Draft.  He comes to Boston as a low-risk, high-reward addition to the roster.  Ritchie should help fill the void left by forward Marcus Johannson, who bolted for Buffalo as a free agent.  “I’m still confident in what I can do.  New team, new opportunity, fresh start — whatever you want to call it.  I’m just going to try to take advantage of it,” said Ritchie.

Shop for Boston Bruins fan gear at NHLShop.caBruins forward Danton Heinen gave the Bruins a 2-0 lead scoring on Stars goaltender Ben Bishop.  Heinen netted a power-play goal shortly after the Ritchie goal.  The Bruins goaltender Tuuka Rask made 28 saves in the win and was praised by Head Coach Bruce Cassidy after the game.

The game was not without any drama though.  Stars defenseman Roman Polak was taken off the ice on a stretcher after going into the boards right shoulder first, and then his head went into the boards with 12:56 left to play in the second period.  Polak was trying to check Boston's Chris Wagner into the boards, but Wagner turned his body.  Polak crashed into the boards.

NESN’s color team Jack Edwards and Andy Brickley sparked some controversy with comments regarding the Polak hit.  “That looked self-induced, didn’t it?” said Brickley immediately after the collision.  Edwards responded with “has a little bit of bad hockey karma”.

As Polak laid motionless on the ice, Edwards and Brickley should be ashamed about their comments regarding the situation.  I’ve personally have been over the Jack Edwards shtick, it’s grown old.  It’s unfortunate that this Bruins win has to be associated with the comments from the Bruins play-by-play booth.  There has never been any middle ground with his play-by-play style, his Tommy Heinson’s homer approach is more for the television show than calling the game.

The Bruins will continue the opening road trip tonight against the Arizona Coyotes.  The Coyotes are coming off a loss in their first game of the season against Anaheim.  The Bruins will put their streak of 14 straight wins against the Coyotes.  The last time the Bruins lost to the Coyotes was on October 9th, 2010, when they were known as the Phoenix Coyotes.

The Bruins will be playing a Coyotes team with higher expectations in 2019.  The team acquired familiar face forward Phil Kessel in the offseason from the Pittsburgh Penguins.  He was sent to the desert with Dane Birks and a fourth-round draft pick for Belarusian-American forward Alexander Galchenyuk and defensemen Pierre-Oliver Joseph, who is a former 23rd overall pick.

The Bruins are hopeful that center David Krejci will make his season debut Saturday night.  Krejci was sidelined on Thursday night against Dallas.  Krejci has missed time since the preseason with a lower body injury.  Cassidy told reporters, that Krejci “felt a lot better” and that he will be a game time decision.  


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Boston Sports Syndicate: Bruins Win Season Opener, Jack Edwards, and Coyotes Preview
Bruins Win Season Opener, Jack Edwards, and Coyotes Preview
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