NHL Draft 2012: Boston Bruins Create Original Six Battle Between Subban Brothers
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The Bruins selected goalie Malcolm Subban with the 24th pick in the first round. Subban's family was at Pittsburgh's Consol Energy Center when he was selected, including older brother P.K. Subban.
Malcolm Subban's older brother is quite familiar with his younger brother's new employers. P.K. Subban is a defenseman for the arch-rival Montreal Canadiens. His goal in the dying minutes of the seventh game in the 2011 playoff series between the two teams allowed the Canadiens to tie the score and push the series to a sudden-death conclusion.
The Bruins ultimately won the series and survived Subban's blast to the top corner of the net when Nathan Horton scored in overtime on a deflected one-time blast that went through Montreal goalie Carey Price.
That moment is just one of many that define the Boston-Montreal rivalry. The Canadiens endured a non-playoff season in 2011-12 and that lessened the intensity of the meetings between the two teams, but the hatred is always simmering when it is not boiling over.
Now the element of family enters into it. It can only ratchet up the passionate feelings between the two fanbases.
New Goalie in Town
Subban's excellent glove hand make him a solid prospect.
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Malcolm Subban is an 18-year-old prospect who impressed scouts with a solid 2011-12 season while playing for Belleville in the Ontario Hockey League. He had a 2.39 goals against average and had a .923 save percentage.
As a young goalie, Subban is not likely to be in a Bruins uniform for a year or more likely two. He will almost certainly play for Belleville again this year and will be among the top players in the league. Even though the Bruins won't have Tim Thomas this season, general manager Peter Chiarelli is not going to rush Subban to the NHL because it would be a good story for the media and fans. He wants him to develop fully before he brings him up.
Chirarelli described Subban as an "incredible athlete" for the position and that he gets significant power from his legs when he slides post-to-post. If he continues to develop his goaltending skills at the rate that he progressed last year, his athletic ability may allow him to become a solid NHL goalie.
Bruins' Goalie Situation
Tuukka Rask is slated to become the Bruins No. 1 goalie.
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Subban will have time to develop at the junior level and the minor leagues before he gets a chance to play for the Bruins. General manager Peter Chiarelli believes it takes goalies longer to develop and he is not going to rush the process.
The Bruins will depend on Tuukka Rask as their No. 1 goalie this season. After the Bruins were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs by the Washington Capitals this season, two-time Vezina Trophy winner Tim Thomas said he planned on taking the 2012-13 season off. He has not retired, but said he wanted to spend more time with his family, among other things.
The loss of an elite-level goalie like Thomas will put the Bruins in a bind, but backup goalie Rask has played well in the NHL and he will get the starting assignment. Rask played in 45 games for the Bruins in the 2009-10 season when Thomas was slowed by injuries, and he had a record of 22-12-2, with a league-best 1.97 goals against average and .931 save percentage, which was also the best in the league.
P.K. Subban and the Bruins-Canadiens Rivalry
P.K. Subban is an agitating defenseman with a big shot.
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P.K. Subban is more than a fast-skating defenseman with a powerful shot. He is an agitating player who has gotten under the skin of Bruins' players, coaches and fans.
Subban has developed a reputation for diving at inappropriate moments. Subban and Brad Marchand have gone at each other in the past and fought on the ice.
That is not his usual way of operating. Subban tends to throw the odd shoulder or elbow and is more of a cheap-shot artist than a fighter. By his own admission, he is not very good at that aspect of the game.
However, when Subban has the puck and is carrying it out of his own zone, he is a dangerous offensive force. He has a brilliant one-time shot that is both powerful and accurate.
Subban Patterned His Style After the King
Malcolm Subban has modeled his game after Henrik Lundqvist's.
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Malcolm Subban has tried to develop his style after New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist.
Subban said he "admires" Lundqvist and that he has patterned his style after Lundqvist after seeing him play for the Rangers and in international competitions. Subban decided to pattern his style after Lundqvist following his performance in the 2006 Olympics.
Subban first started to play goalie when he was 12 years old. Prior to that, he played defense like his older brother. However, once he made the commitment to play goalie, he tried many different styles. But it was Lundqvist's hybrid technique that allowed him to feel most comfortable on the ice.
Lundqvist recently won the Vezina Trophy as the best goalie in the league in 2011-12.