(Photo Credit: Dean Tait- Hockey Shots)

By Andrew Bluestein | Follow Me On Twitter @adbblue

The Boston Bruins improved to 3-0 Thursday night, defeating the San Jose Sharks 3-1. An ideal start to their West Coast road trip

After what seemed to be a counterproductive morning, the team clearly got the message and translated it over to the puck drop in San Jose. 

The Bruins were shot out of a cannon to start the game. Head coach Jim Montgomery had some choice words for the team after the morning skate, and they responded immediately. A very strong opening five minutes was front and center. The team generated some great chances but couldn’t find the back of the net. 

After taking their foot off the gas midway through the first frame, the Bruins stormed right back. In the final two minutes of the period, they scored two goals. First off, the stick of Brad Marchand on a beautiful shot, and again from James Van Riemsdyk jamming away on a loose puck in front. Along with that, Linus Ullmark was sound between the pipes.Ā 

The second period was a bit soft. The Bruins got away with a lackluster performance and had David Pastrnak accidentally score a goal. Yes, that’s right, he actually accidentally scored a goal. After getting knocked off the puck, he had the momentum of his possession carry the puck behind the goal line. 

Outside of that, Boston had a weak frame. They allowed far too many chances due to not being assertive enough in their own end. There was too much standing around in the defensive zone and what seemed to be a lack of communication. Despite all that, they survived the period with a 3-0 lead. 

Morgan Geekie was moved into the center spot for a few shifts in the third period, middling Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak. The threesome made some noise. Geekie was at the center of a few high-quality chances while the two wingers reunited.  

The line had great continuity, so it’s definitely something to look out for going forward. Jake DeBrusk and Pavel Zacha built some clear chemistry as well. The two played off each other’s game, having a couple of really strong shifts together. 

Positionally, the Bruins were mostly solid all night, but they got absolutely burned in the third period. Sharks forward Anthony Duclaire was able to outrace Charlie McAvoy and banked the puck off a trailing Hampus Lindholm into the net. That made things 3-1 with 8:47 to go. Brad Marchand then took a bad penalty after failing to dump the puck in deep, but Boston hung on for the win. 

It’s still clear that work is needed, and the five-on-five lines still need to be cemented, but it was a step in the right direction. The penalty kill remained perfect as they disposed of all three penalties taken. That’s a much more manageable amount for them to kill off. The Bruins will next take on the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday night.