(Photo Credit: Steven Senne/AP Photo)

By: Andrew Bluestein | Follow Me On Twitter / X @adbblue

The Boston Bruins’ struggles on their seven-game home stand continued Thursday night, losing 4-1 to the Seattle Kraken at TD Garden. Boston didn’t play poorly, but their lack of execution is what hurt them the most, as they had their share of chances but couldn’t cap them off. 

There was a lack of continuity at times, and it seemed they were slightly out of sync. They also had some poor luck with Brandon Carlo falling down at the blue line, leading to a goal, and hitting several posts throughout the game. Head coach Jim Montgomery spoke about the team’s recent struggles in his post-game press conference. “Sometimes you go through that during a season. We gotta stick together and keep working, grinding. It’s gonna take some sandpaper goals.”

First Period

The first few minutes of this one featured some fast-paced hockey. Boston started with a solid opening shift, and Seattle answered with one of their own. The Bruins had the first high-danger chance of the night with Jake DeBrusk feeding Pavel Zacha on a two-on-one, but he couldn’t finish. However, moments later, the Black and Gold cashed in with David Pastrnak jamming one home on the doorstep to make it 1-0.

Boston got a power play opportunity right off the ensuing face-off, and despite a few good looks, they couldn’t capitalize. The Kraken got their first chance with the man advantage and were able to cash in with Jordan Eberle going hard to the net and putting home his own rebound past Swayman to tie it 1-1. Seattle kept at it, dictating the game for the next several minutes.

Boston was able to respond with a couple of net-mouth scrambles, but Seattle goaltender Joey Daccord was able to sniff out the loose puck and smother it both times. They then had back-to-back two-on-ones with Oskar Steen getting denied by Daccord and then Matt Grzelcyk tipping a Charlie Coyle pass wide. It was an even opening frame, with the Bruins outshooting the Kraken 16-8. Jeremy Swayman made seven saves.

Second Period

Seattle opened the second period with a chance by Eeli Tolvananen from the high slot, but Swayman turned it aside. The Bruins netminder made a few more solid saves in the early part of the period, keeping the game tied. Boston had their first solid chance when Zacha redirected a pass in front of the net, but Daccord got a pad on it.

The teams exchanged some offensive zone time with nothing to show for. Both teams were strong off the rush, creating some good chances, but the netminders held their ground. The Bruins got some momentum shifted their way after getting their second power play opportunity. They had great puck movement, and it looked as if they had taken the lead on a James van Riemsdyk tap-in goal, but he missed a wide-open net.

Inside three minutes, Carlo lost an edge at the attacking blueline, which led to a Seattle three-on-one, and Eeli Tolvananen finished it off on a one-timer, giving the Kraken a 2-1 lead. Carlo spoke about the play after the game. “Those things happen. I’ve been through it plenty of times and had some blooper reels. Nothing I haven’t been through before, but when they end up in the back of the net, it definitely stings a bit more.” Swayman was strong in the middle period, making nine saves, and the Bruins had the edge in shots 14-10.

Third Period

Boston came out with a strong push to start the third period, which included multiple chances and Coyle banking one off the post. They continued to create odd-man rushes, but the continuity was lacking, and they failed to apply the finishing touches. Seattle extended their lead just before the period’s midway point when Hingham native Matty Beniers beat Swayman down the left wing for a 3-1 lead.

It just seemed that the Bruins were slightly out of sync and couldn’t execute when needed. Charlie McAvoy fed Pastrnak for another grade-A scoring chance, but again, Daccord was able to keep it out. The Kraken goalie had Boston’s number all night, and he couldn’t be solved. Pastrnak touched on being frustrated by the Kraken goalie following the loss. “Obviously, every time you get chances and opportunities to score, it’s always positive; there’s going to be nights where the goalie makes big saves.”

In a last-ditch effort, Montgomery pulled Swayman for the extra attacker with just over four minutes to go, but the purpose was defeated when Pastrnak was called for hooking. That pretty much put a bow on things and sealed a Seattle victory. The Bruins had the shots-on-goal advantage in games 38-26

Up Next

Next, the Bruins will host the Los Angeles Kings for a 12:30 nationally televised matinee on Saturday at TD Garden. It will be game six of the seven-game homestand and the second of two team meetings this season. Boston won the first game 4-2 back in October.