The Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens will renew their storied rivalry Thursday night in Boston when they meet for a NHL reco


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The Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens will renew their storied rivalry Thursday night in Boston when they meet for a NHL reco

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The Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens will renew their storied rivalry Thursday night in Boston when they meet for a NHL record 34th time in the Stanley Cup playoffs in Game 1 of the their Eastern Conference second round series. Greedy Williams Browns Jersey . Each playoff series serves as another chapter, but the Canadiens have ruled much of this rivalry - winning 18 consecutive series from 1946-1987. But since then, the Bruins have won seven of 11 series including the last two out of three. That one loss for Boston is where the rivalry for a good portion of the core of both teams began and now its Montreal who is aiming to turn the tide back after coming so close in their seven-game series loss to the Bruins in 2011. "This building is vibrating!" Those were the words of long-time NESN Bruins play-by-play announcer Jack Edwards when then Boston Bruin Phil Kessel scored a third period game-tying goal during a classic see-saw affair in Game 6 of the 2008 Eastern Conference quarterfinal series between the eighth-seeded Bruins and top-seeded Canadiens. The Bruins would have to tie that game again and then win it 5-4 on a Marco Sturm goal with 2:37 left in regulation forcing a Game 7 after trailing the series 3-1. Montreal though avoided the epic collapse, winning Game 7 5-0. Ironically, that was Carey Prices first and last playoff series win - until the Canadiens recent sweep of the Lighting in the first round of this current playoff season. But in the eyes of the Bruins and their fans, that 2008 series reignited not only the rivalry, but the organization that has since won two straight series - including a 2009 sweep and their first Stanley Cup in 38 years after that nail-biting win over Montreal in 2011. That spring, the sixth seeded Canadiens came in as underdogs again to the third-seeded Bruins. But Montreal took the first two games in Boston to take what seemed like a commanding 2-0 series lead back to the Bell Centre for Games 3 and 4. But the Bruins took the next two games, including a 5-4 overtime win in Game 4 after trailing 3-1 early in the second and 4-3 in the third period. "We were up 3-1. We were up 3-1 going into the third," said Canadiens defenceman P.K. Subban this week. "With a veteran team and the experience we had, we shouldve won the game but we didnt win it. Whos to say what wouldve happened moving forward? I just think we had an opportunity to beat the team that won the Stanley Cup that year." Since it was determined last Saturday that these two rivals would meet for the third time in the last five seasons, the Bruins have had no issues expressing their hatred for the Canadiens. "Yeah I do," Bruins forward Milan Lucic said Wednesday when asked if he hated the Habs. "If you asked them the same question Im sure theyd give you the same answer. "Its just natural for me, being here for seven years now, just being a part of this organization, you just naturally learn to hate the Montreal Canadiens and the battles weve had with them over the last couple of years have definitely made you hate them." The Canadiens however have not given the same answer leading into this series. "No comment," Montreal coach Michel Therrien said flatly after he was twice asked if he hates the Canadiens Wednesday.Lucic has built a personal rivalry with Montreal defenceman Alexei Emelin - similar to the one he had with former Canadiens defenceman Mike Komisarek back in 2009. Last month, Emelin nailed Lucic with a mid-ice hip check that resulted in Bruins captain Zdeno Chara hauling Emelin to the ice. Later in the game, Lucic speared Emelin in the groin. When asked about the personal showdown on Wednesday, Lucic explained thats "just part of the game" - when a right winger and a left sided defenceman square off with each other, and they will develop run-ins like that. But Emelin wasnt available to comment on the matter after Canadiens practice Wednesday and for much of the week, aside from Subban, many of the Montreal players downplayed the animosity. Where former Bruin and current TSN regional Canadiens color man Dave Reid is concerned, thats not necessarily Emelin or the Canadiens just taking the high road or following a gag order. "I think right now most of these guys dont understand what the rivalry is about but it will pick up as the series moves along and the fans will be in it," Reid said Wednesday night. "The fortunate thing about the Montreal and Boston rivalry is that they do seem to play each other so often and whoever won the last series, theyve got the swagger to start the series and the guys that were in that previous series on the losing series say ‘Hey we got something to prove. Thats what makes this rivalry so special - these two teams seem to play each other in the playoffs almost annually. I know the fans look forward to it on both sides and as time goes on so do the players. When youre a player on each side youre almost disappointed when you dont get the chance to go through Boston or Montreal to move on in the playoffs. So this will be another great series and I expect it to be a long series." Whether its this new generation of the rivalry or the older, they likely agree with Reid on those points. And this seasons Canadiens are most definitely looking to regain that swagger. "For guys that are in this room that were there [in 2011] and were a part of it, maybe this is another opportunity to salvage something," Subban later said. "You have to give them credit though. They played well too and its a seven-game series. It takes a lot of heart, a lot of blocked shots and a lot of grit to win that and they won it. They deserved to win it. But I thought that we fell a little bit short and we deserved to win as well but it didnt happen." For so many years, "it didnt happen" were the words of Bruins players following a Bruins-Habs series. Can this underdog Canadiens team make the Stanley Cup favorite Bruins utter those same words just as Ken Dryden and the 1971 Canadiens did to Bobby Orr and the heavily favored Bruins that season? This new generation of the Bruins-Habs rivalry is ready to write the next chapter and whether its at TD Garden or the Bell Centre, yes Mr. Edwards - the building will be vibrating. James Murphy is a freelance reporter who also writes for NHL.com, the Boston Herald and XNsports.com. He covered the Boston Bruins/NHL for last 11 seasons writing for ESPNBoston.com, ESPN.com, NHL.com, NESN.com, the Boston Metro, Insidehockey.com and Le Hockey Magazine. Murphy also currently hosts the radio show "Murphys Hockey Law" heard Saturdays 9-11 AM ET on Sirius/XM NHL Network Radio and 4-6 PM ET on Websportsmedia.com. In addition to that, he is a regular guest TSN 690 in Montreal and Sirius/XM NHL Network Radio as well as a hockey analyst on CTV Montreal. Chad Thomas Youth Jersey . Boston is making its first appearance in the ALCS since 2008. For Detroit, its a third straight trip to the ALCS and its fourth in eight years. Baker Mayfield Youth Jersey .Y. -- Syracuse guard Trevor Cooney was mired in a shooting slump, and his woes coincided with a late-season swoon by the Orange. http://www.brownsauthenticproshop.com/Youth-odell-beckham-jr-browns-jersey/ . Goins is the early favourite to win the starting job at second base. Pillar is an outsider to secure a role off the bench, which becomes an even more difficult spot to win if the number of back up jobs is reduced by one. That happens if the Blue Jays decide to start the season with an eight man bullpen.Canadas largest sports company wants the Maple Leafs to become Chinas favourite hockey team, in much the same way Manchester United is the most popular soccer team in the worlds most populous country. At the same time as Chinese government officials have asked the NHL to stage a regular-season game in China as early as next season, TSN has learned four executives with Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment are scheduled to leave Friday for Beijing for meetings to help grow hockey in China, an untapped frontier for many sports leagues around the world. MLSE chief commercial officer Dave Hopkinson, Bo Hu, MLSEs executive in charge of Chinese business, and two colleagues will attend meetings in Beijing with Prime Minister Stephen Harper, his staff, and Chinese government officials. Maple Leafs President Brendan Shanahan was scheduled to participate but canceled at the last minute, a team spokesperson said. (The NHL and NHLPA announced forward Carter Ashton was suspended for 20 games on Thursday after testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug. Ashton said he borrowed another athletes asthma inhaler.) MLSE executives, the 27-year-old Hu in particular, have quietly laid the groundwork for building the companys profile in China over the past three years. Because basketball is so popular in China, MLSE staff first established relationships with companies interested in sponsorship agreements with the Raptors. The basketball team now has sponsorships with Chinese auto tire maker Aeolus Tires and Asus, a laptop maker. MLSE has also partnered with I.T. company Huawei on music-industry projects. Its believed that MLSE garners more than $300,000 from each of those sponsorships. Company officials declined to say how much sponsorship revenue they make from China-based companies. As MLSEs relationships in China matured, the company landed meetings with the Chinese government - meetings where MLSE received an attractive offer. China is competing with Kazakhstan to host the 2022 Winter Olympics. China wants to have hockey teams that are competitive. But with a mens national team thats ranked No. 38 — behind New Zealand, Belgium and Iceland — China needs help getting to that point. China wasnt a sports nation before the Beijing Olympics in 2008, but it is now, Hopkinson said in an interview. The president of the country attended the Team Canada mens hockey games in Sochi and said he fell in love with hockey. Whats important to the president of China is important to China. Chinese officials said in exchange for helping to develop grass-roots hockey programs in China, the government would help MLSE promote the Maple Leafs brand there. This is the most storied and established brand in the game, Hopkinson said. We were told that if they were going to partner in the NFL, it would be with the Dallas Cowboys. If they were doing a baseball deal, it would be with the New York Yankees. And if theres a partnership in the NHL, its going to be with the Maple Leafs. It doesnt hurt that the Leafs are based in Canada. Tensions might appear if a U.S.-based team tried to do what the Leafs hope to do. The Chinese have told us they really appreciate what we are doing, boots on the ground, helping them to develop a hockey competency, said Hopkinson, who has made four previous trips to China. In March, the Leafs converted all of their rink boards to Chinese to welcome Chinese viewers. In August, the team sent staff to Beijing and Shanghai to stage hockey camps for young amateur players. In coming weekks, the Leafs will aid in the production of a 10-part Hockey 101 series to be included in NHL broadcasts on CCTV in China to educate viewers. Joe Thomas Browns Jersey. We arent the only team in China, Hu said. The Canucks and Islanders are there, too, but we really have a plan to become the biggest hockey brand there. We want to keep holding camps for kids, building grass roots interest, and eventually take our Maple Leafs players there. This is the Manchester United model. The worlds most famous soccer club says it has 108 million fans in China, where it has played almost a dozen times since 1975. Hu said because the NHL prevents teams from promoting themselves outside their local territories, MLSE has been targeting Chinese companies such as Air China and the Bank of China that want to expand their business in Canada. There are a lot of Chinese mining companies that have investments in Canada, although we just signed an agreement with a Colombian mining company, Hu said. Hu confirmed Chinese officials have told the NHL they are interested in hosting an NHL game as soon as next season. As any seasoned marketer knows, the payoff for a team to break through in China is huge. In its recent filing for an initial public offering, Alibaba reported just 45.8 per cent of Chinas population uses the Internet, far lower than Canada or the U.S. In 2000, four per cent of urban households in China were considered middle class; by 2012, more than two-thirds of those homes had gained that status, earning between $9,000 and $16,000. In 2022, Chinas middle class may eclipse 630 million consumers. There already are signs that China, a non-traditional hockey market to be sure, is open to a new sport. Last year, the state broadcaster CCTV began showing four live NHL games every week. This is CCTVs second year of a three-year deal with the NHL. NHL games broadcast on the weekend in China have attracted an average 800,000 households - airing at 7 a.m. local time. By comparison, televised Leafs games in Canada with national distribution this season have attracted about 1.5 million viewers. This year, Beijings 150 registered teams have 2,300 players between the ages of six and 15, MLSE says. Still, there are challenges to growing hockey in China. For starters, its an expensive sport, Hu said, thanks to 30 per cent import duties for hockey equipment shipped from the west and expensive ice time. There are politics to consider. In 2005, the newspaper Beijing Today accused western soccer teams of gold-digging, using their tours of China solely to build their brand and commercial presence. Some efforts simply dont translate. Manchester United closed a pair of theme restaurants after fans didnt see a connection between soccer fandom and eating out, The New York Times reported in 2007. Also, its unclear whether the NHL sees a big upside in China. The league does not have a senior vice president in change of expanding its international business, a position common in other pro sports leagues. Moreover, the NBA has a long head start in China, where it began to lay a toehold during the 1990s. Now, the NBA attracts some five million viewers a game in China. In the U.S., NBA broadcasts on cable TV get about two million viewers per game. Its doubtful that the NHL would ever grow business through the sale of team jerseys. While authentic jerseys now sell for $330 in Canada, counterfeiting has flourished in China, bringing down the price of knock-off jerseys to $5 or $10 in some cases. ' ' '


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