By Mike Cratty | Follow me on Twitter @Mike_Cratty
Marchand – Bergeron – Pastrnak
DeBrusk – Krejci – Smith
Ritchie – Coyle – Steen
Frederic – Kuraly – Kuhlman
Grzelcyk – McAvoy
Zboril – Clifton
Tinordi – Kampfer
Guentzel – Crosby – Rust
Rodrigues – Malkin – Kapanen
Aston-Reese – Jankowski – Tanev
Sceviour – Lafferty – Angello
Dumoulin – Letang
Matheson – Ceci
Pettersson – Ruhwedel
Not an ideal start for the Bruins in this one, as David Pastrnak went off for boarding just 39 seconds into the game. Another 47 seconds later, Evgeni Malkin went off for holding, creating an early 4-on-4 for a minute and 13 seconds. The Bruins killed off their portion of the 4-on-4, giving them an abridged power play.
Pastrnak atoned for his early penalty by breaking the ice in this one. The power play goal marked his 13th of the season, assisted by Brad Marchand (21) and Matt Grzelcyk (7). It was 1-0 Bruins 3:20 into the period. Not too long afterward, Jarred Tinordi set the physical tone with a big hit on Malkin.
Dan Vladar made his presence known outside of a few early saves with a big one in particular. The outstretched stick robbed Colton Sceviour of the equalizer. Talk about a way to make your first career NHL regular season start an exciting one.
Pastrnak took his second penalty of the period, this time for tripping with 6:47 remaining. Nine seconds after the conclusion of the Pastrnak penalty, Brandon Tanev tied the game up at one.
Despite a solid offensive zone stint of around 40 seconds, the Bruins couldn’t add a late goal heading intermission and the score remained tied at one. Shots on goal were deadlocked at 15 apiece.
Another early penalty got this one started, as Patrice Bergeron went off to the box for an illegal check to the head just 34 seconds in. Like the early Pastrnak penalty in the first, the game moved to 4-on-4 play, this time it was a minute and two seconds in for having too many men on the ice. Neither team could convert with the extra room to work with.
Trent Frederic used great body positioning, hands, and strength while cutting to DeSmith’s net to force a holding penalty on Marcus Pettersson. Frederic’s efforts gave the Bruins their third power play of the game, coming with 11:47 remaining in the period. Unfortunately for them, they couldn’t take advantage of it.
Tinordi found himself in some discomfort following a hit from Tanev. The big Bruins defender fell awkwardly on his right leg following the contact. Steven Kampfer objected to the hit and let Tanev know. As the referees reviewed the hit, Tanev was not happy and was eventually assessed a five-minute major penalty for boarding and a game misconduct as a result. He was not happy about it.
Things got contentious late in the period and the score remained tie at one. Scoring troubles continued through yet another 20-minute segment for the Bruins, especially at 5-on-5 play. Vladar made two very timely saves in the final minute. Shots on goal in the second period were 13 to nine in favor of the Bruins, bringing the total to 28 to 24.
Jarred Tinordi was ruled out for the rest of the game as a result of the Tanev hit. Two early penalties wasn’t enough, as Marchand made it three in a row with a high-sticking penalty just 39 seconds into the penalty. Pastrnak’s early penalty in the first period was also 39 seconds in. What a wacky happenstance.
Frederic finally broke the team’s 5-on-5 scoring drought and gave his team a 2-1 lead as a result with 12:53 remaining in the period. Just another great moment in what has been an explosive rookie season for Frederic thus far. His fourth goal of the season was assisted by Jakub Zboril (5) and Patrice Bergeron (15).
Pastrnak and Marchand both missing empty nets made things more chaotic than they needed to be late in the game, but the Bruins pulled out the win. The first career NHL win for Dan Vladar, making 34 saves in what was a pretty impressive performance from him.
Shots on goal were 11 to five in favor of the Penguins in the third period, bringing the final shot tally to 35 to 33 in their favor. One of those five shots for the Bruins was the backbreaker in a tight game, thanks to Frederic. Oskar Steen looked pretty solid in his debut, so not a bad night for the young guys. The Bruins are 15-8-4. Here’s one more thing, for you to just marvel at.
Final Score: 2-1 Boston