By: Max Mainville | Check me out on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj
After a dominant October, the Boston Bruins are back to play their first game in November, against the Ottawa Senators. Boston is coming into this game on a four-game winning streak including a 5-1 win over the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday. Ottawa has not played since Sunday, a 5-2 win over the Sharks as well, but still, have a record of 3-7-1 and sit at the bottom of the Eastern Conference.
Arena: TD Garden – Boston, Massachusetts, USA
Home: Boston Bruins (9-1-2)
Away: Ottawa Senators (3-7-1)
Bruins Last Game: Bruins def Sharks 5-1
Bruins Gameday Lineup:
Head Coach Bruce Cassidy said that Brett Ritchie (infection) is out of the lineup while Connor Clifton will be a healthy scratch for Steven Kampfer. Forward Joakim Nordstrom (infection) will be out for at least the next three games, resulting in the emergency call-up of forward Peter Cehlarik. Par Lindholm (upper-body) is the final scratch for the Bruins.
Beginning the game, the Bruins came out aggressive, shooting on Anderson with multiple easy entries and a couple post-whistle scrums. Less than a minute into the game, the Senators are caught with more than five players on the ice – a too many men penalty, Boston to the man-advantage. In a short time, Torey Krug blasts a bomb from behind his own blueline all the way to the end boards right for Pastrnak, who makes a slick move to bury it early. 1-0 Bruins.
3:08 into the first period, David Backes attempted to bring the puck up and out of the Bruins zone to start the rush until Scott Sabourin comes over to throw a hit. Sabourin and Backes collide heads, causing Sabourin to fall directly to the ice head-first. The 27-year-old was unconscious on the ice for several minutes with the TD Garden dead silent, applauding when the smallest movement occurred.
David Backes was evidently shaken up at the collision, showing a bleak look on his face and eventually left to the locker room as he appeared to be crying. Completely accidental play that turned brutal. The entire benches of both teams went out to show their respect to the Ottawa forward as he was stretchered off. Sabourin did give a thumbs-up as he was wheeled off.
Following the delay, the Bruins control the play, bringing the puck in the zone on numerous occasions and just holding onto possession of the puck for a large majority. When the Senators eventually brought the puck into the zone, Charlie Coyle takes an interference penalty and Boston goes to their first penalty-kill of the game. The B’s keep Ottawa from getting even a single shot on the penalty, doing an excellent job killing it off. The game returns to even-strength.
With less than eight minutes to go in the period, the Bruins turn the puck over in the defensive zone, leading to a 3-on-1 chance for the Senators who end up missing the net on the eventual shot. A quick cycle leads to Anthony Duclair burying a one-timer, extending his point streak to four games and this game is tied 1-1.
Later in the frame, another Senators forward goes down the tunnel with what appears to be a hand/arm injury. Logan Brown came in for a hit on Bruins forward Danton Heinen in a seemingly meaningless play, but his arm appeared to get caught up on Heinen and Brown went down on the ice in evident pain. Senators now down to 14 forwards.
Ottawa showed improvements in their game as the period began to close, but the siren sounds to signify the end of the opening frame.
Shots on Goal: BOS: 11 OTT: 6
Score: 1-1 Goals – Pastrnak (13) PPG Assists: Krug (9); Duclair (5) Assists: L. Brown (2), Borowiecki (3)
Boston comes back after a slow second-half to the first period to score less than two minutes into the middle frame. The first line does a fantastic job keeping the puck in and somehow, Pastrnak is all alone right in front of Anderson. Instead of shooting, he waits the extra second to pass it to Patrice Bergeron who buries it, 2-1 Bruins.
In a very short amount of time after the goal, former Toronto Maple Leafs forward Connor Brown throws the puck towards the net along the goal-line and the puck manages to bounce off of Rask and into the net, Sens tie the game within the first five minutes of the second.
Again, not long afterward, the Bruins get caught themselves with too many players on the ice at the same time and they head to their second penalty-kill of the hockey game so far. Ottawa gets a few really good chances early on the man-advantage, but Tuukka Rask makes some big stops and got lucky on some missed shots to keep the puck out.
With 55 seconds left on the penalty, Marchand gets called for hooking but after the whistle, he makes a poor decision to spear DeMelo in the side, getting an additional four minutes of penalty time. Bruins have to kill off 0:55 of 5-on-3 and then over five minutes of 5-on-4 penalty-kill. Boston does a tremendous job killing over seven minutes of penalties, with a big thanks to Tuukka Rask – back to even-strength.
Boston’s power-play gets another chance with 6:07 remaining as Mark Borowiecki gets called on a slashing minor. Ottawa does a much better job preventing any opportunities to score for the B’s and Boston fails to bury one, penalty expires. However, Borowiecki heads right back to the box for another two minutes as he was caught tripping Brad Marchand, Bruins to their third power-play. Nothing. Another excellent kill for the Sens. Period ends right after.
Shots on Goal: BOS: 21 OTT: 21
Score: 2-2 Goals – Bergeron (6) Assists: Pastrnak (13), Marchand (15); C. Brown (2) Assists: Borowicki (4), DeMelo (3)
After ending both periods in what has been a chaotic, entertaining contest tied, both teams come out going back-and-forth at the start of the final regulation period. For the third-straight period, the Bruins strike early on as Jake DeBrusk and Danton Heinen put hard pressure on Thomas Chabot, allowing Heinen to attack a loose puck and bury it – 3-2 Bruins.
Within the next few minutes to follow the go-ahead goal, Mark Borowiecki takes his third minor penalty of the game – giving Boston yet another power-play to now extend their lead to two goals. And extend the lead is what they would do. Ottawa’s defense found themselves chasing Pastrnak who made it seem as if he was heading behind Craig Anderson, but Pasta magically slides the puck through the traffic to a wide-open Marchand – 4-2 Boston.
Boston has taken over the game since those two rapid-fire goals. The entire team has been playing at a great level, on all levels, and that continues when Jake DeBrusk does a fantastic job on the forecheck, poking it free for Heinen who feeds it back to DeBrusk for a slapshot one-timer. 5-2 Bruins final score.
Shots on Goal: BOS: 32 OTT: 32
Final Score: 5-2 Bruins
Max’s Three Stars:
1st Star: BOS F David Pastrnak – 1 Goal, 2 Assists, 3 Shots, 17:03 TOI
2nd Star: BOS G Tuukka Rask – 30 Shots, .938 SV%
3rd Star: BOS F Danton Heinen – 1 Goal (GWG), 1 Assist, 14:08 TOI
Bruins now have won five-straight games and look ahead to their first game of a back-to-back against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Monday in Boston.