Claude Julien blasts Bruins for ‘unacceptable’ play

Claude Julien was full of criticism for his team following another loss.
Matt Kartozian/Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

The Boston Bruins lost their fourth game of the year Wednesday when they fell to the Flyers in overtime, 5-4. The Bruins held a 4-2 lead going into the third period, but poor focus and worse defense saw them blow that lead. It was a continuation of a trend throughout the game in which the Bruins consistently allowed the Flyers to regain momentum when Boston should have been able to shut them down.

Coach Claude Julien was not pleased with his team's effort. 

“We had too many guys with light sticks, too many guys playing a light game, and that’s not the way we’re going to have some success,” Julien told reporters after the game. “So, it’s unacceptable, and what happened (Wednesday), I think we probably deserved. They were the hungrier team, and we didn’t respond well. Too many light guys.”

The coach also ignited some controversy when he called out young forward David Pastrnak, who finished the night as a minus-1 and played just 14:16 on the night. 

“It’s about respecting the game more than just scoring goals,” Julien told reporters. “There’s a learning curve there. There’s also a respect factor there. You’ve got to understand that there’s more to the game than just trying to be flashy.”

Pastrnak was robbed of a goal thanks to a stellar save by Flyers goal Steve Mason in the third period, but the 19-year-old otherwise had an unremarkable night. Despite starting the game on the second line with David Krejci and Loui Eriksson, Julien moved Pastrnak down as the game continued and replaced him on the second line with Jimmy Hayes. 

The Bruins' issues extend far beyond one game or Pastrnak. The roster is decidedly lacking, and the team's continued weakness on defense is clearly affecting goaltender Tuukka Rask negatively. But Julien's criticism on Wednesday night showed he is unwilling to accept any excuses from his team. Whether they have the capability of responding adequately remains to be seen.

(h/t NESN)

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