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Toews: We shouldn’t be scared of Chara

Jun 20, 2013, 5:14 PM EDT

When Chicago rookie Brandon Saad stole the puck off the Bruins early in last night’s game, he didn’t hesitate when he looked up and saw big Zdeno Chara standing between him and the Boston net at the other end of the ice.

Instead, Saad did this:

That goal was the first of five — yes, five — Chicago goals for which Chara was on the ice.

“That’s one of the main goals is to get him to move his feet and try to sustain that pressure,” Saad said Thursday. “He’s a great defenseman but to keep that pressure and have the success that we did, that’s always a positive thing.”

In a related story, Bruins head coach Claude Julien spoke today about neutralizing the ‘Hawks attack before it has a chance to turn its speed into pressure.

“I think Chicago did a great job last night,” said Julien. “They put pucks in deep, and they came after us. They were forcing us very well. And because they got some speed in the neutral zone, it didn’t mean they had to make plays, but they put pucks in the right places.”

While it’s unlikely the Bruins will be quite so loose defensively Saturday at the United Center, for the Blackhawks, Game 4 was proof that Chara’s not invincible.

“I think maybe at times in the first couple games we were giving him a little bit too much respect by trying to keep the puck away from him,” said Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews.

“He’s not a guy that we should be afraid of. We should go at him, protect the puck from him, make plays around him and through him.”

  1. polegojim - Jun 20, 2013 at 5:28 PM

    Wow… how do you do that for the first three games…. and admit it???

    I mean… they didn’t think about it beforehand??? They didn’t game plan for it… and discuss it???

    No wonder they looked so bad for games 2 and 3…

    I guess better late than never.

    • badintent - Jun 21, 2013 at 2:45 AM

      Yeah and cut down on all the beer in the clubhouse.

  2. hammerhead5573 - Jun 20, 2013 at 5:35 PM

    Look at that play again. The player who should be embarrassed after that goal is Bergeron. How you let Handzus beat you down the ice is beyond me? The only reason the Hawks picked him up early this year was for his faceoff skills certainly not his speed.

    • hockeyflow33 - Jun 20, 2013 at 8:34 PM

      Well we all know Bergeron is known for his lack of effort so you’re probably correct

      • lordstanley65 - Jun 21, 2013 at 11:04 PM

        I hope that’s sarcasm.

      • hockeyflow33 - Jun 22, 2013 at 12:35 AM

        Nope, I also think he’s a dirty player, terrible on face-offs and horrible in the defensive zone.

    • pedroskybb - Jun 21, 2013 at 12:43 AM

      Handzus has a step on him and Bergeron couldn’t catch up…Chara should be blamed. Although that was a sneaky pass, Chara could have easily prevented it with better anticipation.

  3. dropthepuckeh - Jun 20, 2013 at 5:48 PM

    “He’s not a guy that we should be afraid of.” Kind of an odd statement to make unless you are in fact scared of him. Truth be told I’m scared of the guy and there is no chance he ever crushes me into the boards…

    • hammerhead5573 - Jun 20, 2013 at 6:01 PM

      I think he was responding to a question. I don’t think he just came out and offered that comment for the sake of conversation

      • polegojim - Jun 21, 2013 at 3:51 PM

        Either way…. it’s still a VERY odd statement to make.

        How about – we’re NOT afraid of Chara… and haven’t been this whole series… THEN add the other statement.

  4. titansbro - Jun 20, 2013 at 6:08 PM

    I’m sure Chara will love these comments. Hey big Z, Toews thinks they should go at you, around you. & through you. What do you think about that?

    Chara angry.
    O O
    /| | | | \
    \| | | | /

    • alexbaymac - Jun 20, 2013 at 10:46 PM

      Chara is a great player & seems to be a good leader but I read somewhere that Chara reminded the person of a shaved Wookie, not that I think he ever saw one but….it was too funny not to repeat!

      • noisetheorem - Jun 21, 2013 at 10:58 AM

        I have said that on several occasions. I say that will all due respect to both Chara and Wookies. The test will be if anyones arms get pulled out of their sockets when the Bruins loose.

        I am all for more Wookies in the NHL. And they can keep their hair, too.

    • princeton155 - Jun 22, 2013 at 10:45 AM

      He is slow and a non factor.Keep him on the ice,it helps the Hawks

  5. vanindeed - Jun 20, 2013 at 8:50 PM

    Chara should be up for the Norris every year regardless of offence. The best free agent signing of the last decade.

  6. tlndma - Jun 20, 2013 at 10:36 PM

    I think Toews just “Poked the Bear”…..didn’t anyone tell him not to do that?

    • noisetheorem - Jun 21, 2013 at 10:59 AM

      Poking a bear with a tranquilizer dart generally doesnt’ work out well for the bear.

  7. blomfeld - Jun 20, 2013 at 11:38 PM


    As an ardent and values-driven supporter of the current ‘reigning’ Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings, my advise to Toews and friends would be to go straight at this human weirdo like a ‘crazed & half-starved’ rat going for the throat of some stupid door-knocking salesman from Chick E Cheese! In fact, I wouldn’t even grant this ‘radioactive’ bean stalk one single ounce of respect, such is his preposterous and almost comical presentation. Friends, one of things I’ve learned in my 53 years of existence, is that there’s only one thing that the bully understands and that’s to be smacked square in the teeth … only then do they finally understand.

    In all seriousness this is going to be tough for the Black Hawks, even though they’re clearly the ‘superior’ team in terms of playing actual ice hockey. Boston’s MO today is exactly the same as it was two years ago against the Canucks, who were also a clearly ‘superior’ team … foul-breathed intimidation coupled with unabashed mayhem. But unlike the Canucks who ultimately gave in to Boston’s thuggery and ‘ridicule’ of the game’s tenets, these Black Hawks need to seriously bear down and now take care of business. Strike hard, strike ruthlessly and run up the score on these A-holes like there was no tomorrow !

    ps: in many ways this is eerily similar to Clarke and his band of pigs who upset the ‘beautiful’ and preordained Bruins in May of ’74 and the ‘glorious’ Red Army team in January of ’75, using thuggery and vermin-like tactics with “zero’ regard for the notion of sport and fair play …

    GO HAWKS GO !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)


    • pedroskybb - Jun 21, 2013 at 12:48 AM

      “Canucks, who were also a clearly ‘superior’ team”…don’t let the fact the Bruins beat the Canucks stand in the way of your argument. What more proof do you need? They went head-to-head and the Bruins won, that makes them the superior team.

      • blomfeld - Jun 21, 2013 at 1:18 AM

        “What more proof do you need?”

        Friend … were you and I to be sitting down to a game of chess and then I suddenly reach over and snap your neck like a chicken, is that supposed to equate to victory for me ? … I don’t think so

      • bakedbees - Jun 21, 2013 at 10:25 AM

        You want figure skating, NHL hockey is for men, checking and even fighting are inherent within the rules. stop trying to demonize a strategy that has been a part of this game for over 100 years…
        Now go sit in the corner for a time out lil’Blomfy (but what you really need is a good spanking so you learn your lesson)

  8. icrew29 - Jun 21, 2013 at 8:34 AM

    The Blackhawks need to continue to pressure Chara on every chance they get. Chara will lose his cool just like Toews did against Detroit. I truly do not see why everyone thinks Chara is such a great defensive player, if he wasn’t so tall he would be an average player. This guy can’t pass as good as Crawford. Boston should know better, they had the best there ever was as far as defense goes and Chara can’t even carry Bobby Orr stick.

  9. richwizl - Jun 21, 2013 at 9:43 AM

    Toews is right, they can’t be fearful of him, but Chara’s long reach will make them play differently. Good luck going through him; around him is a better idea. We need goals from Kreichi and Seguin. Go Bruins!

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