(Photo Credit: AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

By: Andrew Bluestein | Follow Me On Twitter @adbblue

The Boston Bruins fell 4-3 in a shootout to the Colorado Avalanche Monday night in the first of a four-game western road trip. The most concerning part of the loss is that defenseman Brandon Carlo left the game with an apparent upper-body injury and did not return.

Colorado had the edge in shots on goal 36 to 27 and created numerous chances off the rush. The Bruins did play a solid game and established a strong fore-check for a good chunk of the night, but ultimately, it wasn’t enough.

First Period

Colorado had a push early on that was withheld by a couple of big point-blank stops by Jeremy Swayman. The Bruins responded with a great chance off an offensive zone face-off where David Pastrnak was robbed by Alexander Georgiev. Johnny Beecher had a notable heavy hit on Devon Towes, crushing the defenseman into the end boards.

The Bruins took the game’s first penalty and had two golden shorthanded chances, with Charlie Coyle and Jake DeBrusk failing to score on breakaways, and they killed it off. Boston then got their own chance on the power play and started slow.

They were, however, able to cash in when Brad Marchand walked in off the left half wall and ripped a wrist shot past Georgiev for a 1-0 lead. The Avalanche tied the game 1-1 on their second power play opportunity when Mikko Rantanen roofed the puck home on the doorstep. Colorado outshot Boston in the opening frame 14-5, with Swayman strong in net, making 13 saves.

Second Period

A miscommunication between Pavel Zacha and Kevin Shattenkirk resulted in the two bumping into each other and causing a turnover. Logan O’Connor collected the giveaway and beat Swayman to give Colorado a 2-1 lead. The Avalanche had a chance to extend their lead with another power play, but the Bruins gained some momentum by killing it off.

Boston tied the game when Beecher put home a rebound generated from a Danton Heinen shot, making it 2-2. It looked like Colorado had retaken the lead when the puck got behind Swayman, but Charlie McAvoy kept it off the line, saving a goal. The Avalanche did end up taking a 3-2 lead with just 2:04 left in the second period when Sam Malinski fired a wrist shot from the top of the blue line that got by Swayman. The Bruins were outshot again, ten to nine. 

Third Period and Overtime

The Avalanche opened the third period with some consistent pressure as the Bruins were without the services of Brandon Carlo, who left the game with an upper-body injury and did not return. Boston had a great chance just before the 15-minute mark when Oskar Steen rang a shot off the outside of the right post.

The Black and Gold did tie the game on an absolute offensive zone clinic orchestrated by Coyle and Marchand. The two had a great give-and-go, which resulted in Coyle finding the Bruins captain, who scored his second of the night, tying the game 3-3. The Bruins continued to push the attack with a collection of high-danger chances but couldn’t finish.

Regulation ended in a 3-3 tie, with Boston having to kill off a penalty with just under three minutes to go. Colorado again had the edge in shots 12 to eight. The overtime period featured plenty of back-and-forth opportunities with multiple changes in possession.

Both goalies made big saves, keeping their team alive. The Bruins had a power play for the last minute and a half of OT but couldn’t win the game. The Avalanche took the victory, winning 4-3 in the shootout, with Val Nichushkin scoring the lone goal.

Up Next

The Bruins will head to Arizona to face the Coyotes in the second half of a back-to-back. The puck drop will be at 9:00 p.m. on the East Coast. It will be the second of two meetings between the teams this season. Boston won the first one by a score of 5-3.