The Bear Cave

September 21, 2009 11:25 AM

Bruins Treat Quebec City with Win over Montreal

Preseason games might not have the intensity of a regular season or playoff match-up, but there's always a special feeling in the air when two rivals hit the ice against one another. That was the case on Sunday night, as the Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens met for the first time since Boston eliminated Montreal in the first round of the playoffs. The scene for this battle was a packed house at Quebec City's Colisee Pepsi - the former home of the Quebec Nordiques, and the current home of the QMJHL's Quebec Remparts. Despite the different venue, the end result was similar to those from last season, as the Bruins came away with a 2-1 victory.

The scoring began in the early stages of the contest. Michael Ryder received the puck in the high slot of Boston's offensive zone, and tossed a shot toward the net. The shot went through a few bodies, while also getting deflected. The screen and deflections must have fooled Jaroslav Halak, as Ryder's shot ended up bouncing in past the Canadiens' netminder. It was only fitting that Ryder would open the scoring, as he spent the majority of two seasons playing for the Quebec Citadelles (Montreal's former AHL affiliate).

A few minutes later, the fans got some more excitement, as Jeff LoVecchio's hit on a Montreal player popped a panel of glass out of place. The remainder of the opening stanza went by without any scoring, as Tuukka Rask and Jaroslav Halak combined to stop 22 of the 23 shots they faced.

Approximately five minutes into the second period, LoVecchio made himself noticeable again. Physical play was starting to heat up, as he and one of the Canadiens exchanged solid hits in the neutral zone. The Montreal player's hit was the latter of the two, forcing the Boston forward to get back to his feet. However, on his way up, LoVecchio was run at by Sergei Kostitsyn. LoVecchio was less than pleased, challenging the youngest Kostitsyn brother to a fight. The Bruins' rookie won the tussle, landing a series of punches.

With a little more than five minutes left in the middle frame, the Bruins doubled their lead. Max Sauve took a slap shot from the high slot, that Halak easily knocked away. The rebound kicked over to the left circle, where Mark Recchi was quick to gather it in. Recchi went toward the net, before ultimately sending the puck through the crease for Chuck Kobasew on the right side. Kobasew finished the play, tapping a shot in past the helpless goalie for a 2-0 Boston lead after two periods of play.

Less than two minutes into the third period, Montreal cut the deficit in half. Josh Gorges got the puck at the point, and elected to let a shot go, as the front of the net was filled with players. Rask attempted to look through the bodies, but was unable to find the puck, as Gorges' shot slammed into the back of the cage.

With time winding down in regulation, the Canadiens nearly got the equalizer. Brian Gionta received a pass as he entered the offensive zone. The former Boston College star proceeded in alone, beating Rask on a breakaway. However, the goal was called back due to the play being offside. That ended up being Montreal's final chance of the evening, as the Bruins skated away on the right side of a 2-1 final score.

In other news on Sunday, the Boston Bruins were busy making roster moves, as they released 13 players from their full training camp, while also releasing eight others from their rookie camp tryout agreements, leaving the current roster with 41 players. Adam Courchaine, Matt Dalton, Jordan Knackstedt, and Matt Marquardt were directly assigned to the Providence Bruins. Scott Fletcher and Rob Kwiet were both released from their tryout agreements, but were both sent to Providence. Alain Goulet and Lane MacDermid are unsigned draft choices, who were released from the NHL training camp, and will be reporting to the Baby B's. Ryan Button, Jordan Caron, Michael Hutchinson, and Tyler Randell are unsigned draft choices, who have been returned to their respective junior clubs.
Chris DeSousa, Brad Good, Mark Isherwood, Jason Lawrence, Taylor MacDougall, Peter Stevens, Jason Wilson, and Marc Zanetti have all been released from their tryout agreements.

The Boston Bruins have Monday off, before taking the ice on Tuesday night for their fifth game of the preseason. Tuesday night's opponent is the Columbus Blue Jackets, with the game taking place in Ohio at Nationwide Arena.

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