1. HC Lugano fans at their second-ever NHL game
Oh man, you guys, so I took the green line home about an hour after the game and who do i run into but these two gentlemen. With such cool jerseys, I figured they weren't just random masshole dudebros, so I asked them about said jerseys.True fact - they were actually from Lugano! Turns out they became big Patrice Bergeron fans during the lockout - which is awesome considering that when Lugano signed him, they had no idea who he was.
That's right. They knew who Tyler Seguin was, but Patrice Bergeron is so criminally underrated that the Swiss didn't even know his name before he went over. One of these two guys said, verbatim, in a great accent: "Oh yeah so when players were signing over here, we were like oh maybe we'll get Steven Stamkos, or like Claude Giroux, or Jonathan Toews, but then they signed him and we were like oh, Bergeron. Who is Bergeron."
Sigh. POOR BERGERON. Anyways, they went on to talk about how baffled they were that NHL fans don't stand for the whole game, that the arena was so BIG (apparently Bern has an arena that's about 17,000 seats, but the next biggest one, in Zurich, is about 12,000), and that the TD Garden tonight was so quiet (seriously, I am ashamed as a Bruins fan that they had to come all the way from Switzerland to witness THAT game, of all games). They talked about how European fans sing chants at their games, and couldn't believe that they could actually hear the sounds of skateblades and the puck hitting players' sticks.
They also were curious about who Kaspars Daugavins was, and they were excited to see Jaromir Jagr play. Obviously. The conversation about Jagr went from "he's good...but he's slow...because he's old...he's like 40...you know who else is 40? GLEN METROPOLIT. He plays for our team, and he's so great, we love him."
Glen Metropolit, you guys. (Also apparently Chris Bourque played there at one point, and they didn't understand why I didn't like him. There's no explaining extreme suckitude to the Swiss, I guess.)
Unfortunately their trip to North America started in Toronto, so they went to a game at the ACC first - luckily they had nothing but disdain for the Maple Leafs. Excellent. Also, they explained the HC Biel/Bienne name - apparently Biel is the German name of the town, and Bienne is the French name, and it's located in a place with lots of people who speak French and German, so you can call it whichever you want and either way, you're right. Very cool.
2. ALL-CONNECTICUT NCAA FINALS
Yay Yale, Yay Quinnipiac. Awesome that there are no midwestern teams in the finals. Go go New England hockey.
3. THE P-BRUINS CLINCHED THEIR DIVISION
And won lots of awards; post on this coming tomorrow.
ALL OF THOSE THINGS WERE COOLER THAN THE BRUINS GAME TONIGHT
But let's break down the pluses and minuses anyways.
+ Tuukka Rask. Any idiot who doesn't have him in their Vezina predictions is a moron. He made some incredible stops tonight, and the only two goals he allowed - one was a ridiculous Josh Bailey snipe after Bailey'd beat the D in front of Rask, and the other was a lucky trickle through his pads that doesn't happen nine times out of 10. Whatever.
+ Gregory Campbell has been a delight the last few games. A shocker: putting him with non-fourth line linemates and suddenly he's so much better!
+ For as much as people have ragged on Tyler Seguin, he didn't look bad tonight. Athough Jagr did a lot of the setup work for his goal, Seguin was perfectly positioned to fire that power play goal home in the second. Nice work.
+ I am absolutely shocked at how happy I am with Matt Bartkowski's play recently. Today, in the final few minutes, he did some great work with the puck - I like that he doesn't just pass it into the zone, but rather seems more and more comfortable carrying it in himself with every passing shift.
- Scoring one goal is really not going to win you a lot of games, Bruins.
- The Andrew Ference - Adam McQuaid D-pair? Yeah, we remembered why we hated it before, right? Yikes.
- Boychuk makes a lot of really terrible decisions on the ice, wow.
- MILAN LUCIC WHAT ARE YOU DOING ANYMORE
- Jagr....man. I like Jagr. I'm glad he's on the team. BUT WOW IS HE EVER SLOW TO GET OFF THE ICE SOMETIMES
I'm sure there's other stuff, feel free to gripe in the comments section. Next game is Saturday against the Canes.