Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Quickie Sports Chowdah Update- Peverly Collapses on Stars Bench, Rushed to Hospital; Bruins Have Fruitful Road Trip In Florida; Buyer Be-Ware, NFL Free Agency Begins

DALLAS STARS- Former Boston Bruins forward Rich Peverley collapsed on the Dallas Stars bench in the first period of Monday night's game against the Columbus Blue Jackets before being rushed to a local hospital with what doctors are calling a 'cardiac event'.

Shortly after Columbus took a 1-0 lead thanks for former Bruin, there was a commotion by the Dallas bench as Stars head coach Lindy Ruff called for medics to tend to the fallen Peverley. There was several moments of confusion among the broadcasters and the crowd as they attempted to identify the downed player and the reason medics were tending to him [I heard the Stars play-by-play live on the radio; the arena was as quiet as a mausoleum after Peverley had collapsed- NANESB!].

After Peverley was rushed to UT Southwestern Hospitals, the officials conferred and it was announced that the game would be suspended with the makeup date to be announced later.

On Wednesday, after the forward briefly addressed the media, it was announced that Peverley would miss the remainder of the season after undergoing a heart procedure this upcoming weekend. When he first arrived in Dallas after the trade with Boston, team doctors were reportedly aware of Peverley's atrial fibrillation- a common heart condition- and gave him the option of a less invasive procedure or surgery that could cost him several months of playing time. After missing the first game of the regular season, Peverley opted for the less invasive procedure and played in 60 consecutive games before complaining of discomfort last week. After missing a game, Peverley played in two more games prior to his Monday night collapse.

OTHER STARS NEWS- Although Dallas is largely in control of their own destiny when it comes to securing one of the remaining Western Conference playoff berths, the Stars were having problems with injuries to their starting players even before Peverly's cardiac event on Monday night. After a pregame ceremony on Saturday night against the Minnesota Wild in which Troy Aikman and Roger Staubach were on hand, the Dallas Stars retired Mike Modano's #9 jersey.

With the game tied at 3-3 with just over six and a half minutes to go in regulation, goalie Kari Lehtonen was knocked out of the game after a collision with Minnesota's Erik Haula in which Lehtonen hit his head on the crossbar of the goal. Fresh off the trade from Florida, former Bruins netminder Tim Thomas came into the game- complete with pads still in Florida Panthers colors- and turned aside all six shots he faced as Erik Cole put Dallas up for good with a breakaway goal with just under 5 minutes to go in regulation, giving Dallas the 4-3 win.

On Monday, it was confirmed that Lehtonen suffered a concussion from the Haula hit, making Tim Thomas the Stars starting goalie within days of his arrival. Between coming in with 6 minutes to go in regulation and Monday night's postponed game after the Peverley scare, Tuesday night marked the first start (and complete game) for Tim Thomas when the Stars travelled to St Louis to take on the Blues. The goalie matchup seemed a little reminiscent of the Northeast Division anytime between 2006 and 2012, with ex-Sabre Ryan Miller getting the start for St Louis.

St Louis got out to a 1-0 lead in the first after Alex Pietrangelo beat Thomas with about 7 minutes to go in the first. With the game tied at 2-2, the contest headed to overtime and Jamie Benn broke the deadlock to give Dallas the OT win with 1:18 to go. Tuesday night's loss was also notable in that it was the Blue's first loss since acquiring Ryan Miller from Buffalo earlier this month.

BOSTON BRUINS- You know it's been a pretty crazy week if I'm giving the Bruins second billing to a team from the Lone Star state on a blog called Not Another New England Sports Blog!

And it's been an eventful week for the Boston Bruins- particularly their 2-0 road trip through Florida over the weekend. After coming from behind to force overtime, the Bruins eventually came out on top against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday night after Reilly Smith got the only goal of a 7-round shootout.

On Sunday, the Bruins managed to down the Florida Panthers by a 5-2 final, setting up a key game in Montreal where the Bruins were hoping to get their first win against the Habs this season while continuing their win streak and pulling to within a point of the Penguins.

I'll be honest...Wednesday night's game wasn't everything I thought it would be. It was so much better!

After a scoreless first period, Carl Sodeberg put the Bruins on the board just 93 seconds into the second period. A Patrice Bergeron tally around the halfway point of the period would give Boston a 2-0 lead while Milan Lucic beat Peter Budaj with less than 90 seconds to go in the 2nd to give Boston a 3-0 lead.

There have been instances when such a seemingly commanding lead fosters a sense of complacency which in turn leads to sloppy play and squandering once-considerable leads. That wasn't happening on Wendesday. Just 23 seconds into the 3rd, the most hated man in Montreal- Zdeno Chara- gave Boston an insurmountable 4-0 lead. Although David Desharnais would get a tally for Montreal and ruin Tukka Rask's shutout bid, the Bruins would go on to win by a 4-1 final at the Bell Centre on Wednesday night.

The win is Boston's 6th in a row and puts the Bruins within one point of Pittsburgh for the top spot in the Eastern conference while Montreal goes on to lose their third straight game after coming off a west coast road trip where they went 1-4. Rask turned aside 35 of 36 shots faced while Budaj allowed 4 goals on 32 shots. Neither team scored on the power play tonight, with Boston having two opportunities and Montreal having three.

The Bruins head back to Boston for their first home game since March 6th when they will face off against the Phoenix Coyotes at TD Banknorth Garden. Puck is scheduled to drop at 7:00 PM ET and the game will be televised on NESN and the NHL Network.

NFL- The NFL Free Agency period has begun and already there have been a few significant moves.

Wide receiver Golden Tate has left the defending Superbowl Champion Seattle Seahawks after agreeing to a 5 year, $31 million contract with the Detroit Lions. The deal took place after media reports indicated that Tate would be open to a 'hometown discount' with the Seahawks.

Other departures include both former Cowboys DE DeMarcus Ware and former Patriots cornerback Aquib Talib were signed by the Denver Broncos, the team announced on Wednesday.

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