Monthly Archives: February 2010

I’m not over it, but Tommy Cross is awesome (again)

Okay, yeah, the Beanpot was disappointing, not even going to lie about that. I realized halfway through the game that I’d completely forgotten one of the Bruins’ prospects played for BC – not only that, but he was someone I’d taken notes on/checked out this summer. Whoops…anyways, here’s 2007 draft pick Tommy Cross!

Tommy Cross! That Bruins uniform does wonders for you, sir. Much better than the BC one.

Defenseman Tommy Cross got his start in the Connecticut hockey system, playing at Simsbury High and the Westminster School. In addition to racking up the points for his high school teams, Cross participated in the 2005 Under-17 Five nations tournament in Switzerland (USA won gold), the 2006 Under-18 Four nations tournament in Sweden, and captained his Under-18 team to a Silver medal at a tournament in Slovakia and the Czech Republic in 2006. He played two games with United States’ National Under-18 team at the IIHF tournament in 2007 in Finland, on a roster than included future cross-town rivals Kevin Shattenkirk, Colby Cohen, Vinny Saponari, and Colin Wilson, along with future NHLer James Van Riemsdyk and 2010 USA juniors star Danny Kristo.

His solid defensive performance in high school and in IIHF play got him notice for the 2007 draft, and sure enough, he was taken 35th overall, with the Bruins 2nd round pick – they traded their 2nd and 3rd round picks to the Chicago Blackhawks to snag Cross. Former teammate Van Riemsdyk went 2nd overall; Zach Hamill was the Bruins’ 1st round pick. Oh, and that skinny little dude who picked a fight against the Falcons a few weeks ago, Jordan Knackstedt? 189th overall. The 2007 draft was relatively USA-heavy, compared to prior and later years; 30% of the draft class was USA-born and only 20% European-born, compared to 28% from USA and 32% from Europe in 2006, and 20% USA/21% Europe in 2008. Post-draft, Cross played one more year at Westminster, tallying 28 points (8 goals, 20 assists) in 25 games. He also played 9 games with the Junior Blue Jackets, logging 4 points there (4 assists) before starting at Boston College as a freshman in the 08-09 season. It must have been nice, walking through the halls of a championship winning school in Fall 2008.

Tommy Cross is a Boston boy; his college decision came down to BU or BC, and although he made the wrong decision to go with BC and Jerry York’s system, sticking with two teammates from his youth hockey days (Cam Atkinson and Nick Petrecki), it’s good to see a star player from New England sticking with the region. He played 2/3 of his freshman season at BC before missing the last third with a knee injury; still, as a freshman, he registered 8 assists in 19 games, all against Hockey East teams, including one three-assist game against Maine.

Cross was invited to participate in Bruins’ training camp in 2009; he did not skate until the 3rd day of camp, participating only in off-ice exercises due to continued rehab. He’s back out there for Boston College this year; known for his stay-at-home defensive style, Cross has logged four goals and four assists. He’s mobile for his 6’3, 210lb frame, but needs to work on his offensive game a little more; on the Hockey’s Future Bruins’ depth chart he’s ranked higher than most of the P-Bruins’ defensemen, so he should give that team a solid boost on the blue line, eventually. Once he’s through with Boston College he’ll be due to at least star on the P-Bruins, with an eventual callup to the NHL probable, as long as he continues developing.

Tommy Cross. Come play for the Bruins soon, plz.

So enjoy your Beanpot, sir; you’ve got great things in your future. Besides, BU is winning it next year, so don’t get too used to having it around.

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Take Back the City: Bruins @ Sabres

This is a big one, y’all.

So we won a game. We won a game after dropping an amazing 10 straight, after panic about tanking the season and “who’re we gonna draft?” talks swirled everywhere. But we broke the streak – with a Tuukka Rask shutout, no less – and now it’s on to Buffalo.

This guy, I'm telling you.

It was nice to beat the Habs, it really was – but here’s the deal, guys. Tonight’s game? Way more important.

The Bruins have the #2 penalty kill in the league. We’re sitting pretty at 86.7 percent right now. But guess who’s at 86.8 percent? The SABRES. Tuukka’s got a sweet save percentage, still; 2nd in the league at .929. Guess who’s sitting at .931? Ryan Miller. (and Tomas Vokoun, but we’re leaving him out for dramatic purposes right now.)

Niemi who? Let's get our prettier goalie back atop the GAA too please.

Ference is back, Krejci’s probable, Sturmface is on Bergy’s line (SO good!), and McQuaid stepped up bigtime in Johnny B’s absence two nights ago, looking good paired with Ference. This is our chance to not only reclaim our rightful place as leaders of the PK pack, to not only get Tuukka the rightful save % leader photo he deserves, but to make ourselves contenders, tying Philly and Tampa for the 7th-8th playoff position, and putting more distance between us and the Thrashers/Rangers/Panthers. The playoff race is still hot, with only a 5-point spread between 6th and 12th; every two points count, and our guys aren’t giving up the season anytime soon.

Maybe we can get a little more of this, too? Just...with less falling down this time, okay Wheels?

Let’s get ’em. GO BRUINS.

Goal Explosion: P-Bruins vs. Falcons, 1/31/09

2009-2010 stats:
Providence Bruins: 23-23-3 (49 pts – 7th)
Springfield Falcons: 16-26-8 (42 pts – 8th)

At this game, I teamed up with Teka of Talk Hockey To Me and her awesome camera skills. For more pictures from this game, check out her Flickr stream!

Brad Marchand

The Providence Bruins came into today sitting at 7th out of 8 in the Atlantic Division, exactly tied at 0.500 in 9th place in the Eastern Conference with the Norfolk Admirals of the East Division. The Falcons, on the other hand, are in dead last in the AHL. No surprise there, as they’re the Oilers’ AHL affiliate. The Peebs played the Falcons Saturday in Springfield as well in a decisive 8-2 win. The re-arrival of Adam McQuaid, Drew Larman and Trent Whitfield combined with Brad Marchand’s recent return from injury probably contributed to the numbers there; they dropped a 2-0 decision to the Manchester Monarchs in Larman and Whitfield’s return debut, but I’m chalking that up to both the fact that Manchester is #1 in the Division, currently on a hot streak, and it’s possible Larman and Whitfield just needed time to readjust to the AHL pace.

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