(Photo Credit: Charles Krupa / Associated Press)

By: Andrew Bluestein | Follow Me On Twitter @adbblue

The Boston Bruins lost to the Carolina Hurricanes 4-1, snapping their impressive four-game winning streak. It was an ugly performance, and a lack of offense was what did them in. They couldn’t generate a consistent forecheck, which led to some frustration most of the night, especially during the second period. Head coach Jim Montgomery made it a point of emphasis following the loss.

“Second period, I thought they came out, and pushed hard. They were over the top of us. I thought their checking skills were superior to ours.” Carolina suffocated them for much of the game, especially in the second period, where the Bruins had only two shots through the first 14:00. A highlight-reel goal and capitalizing on a couple of bad Boston mistakes propelled the Hurricanes to victory. 

First Period

It seemed as if Carolina got on the board first, early after Martin Necas took a shot from a tight angle just off the far boards. The officials initially called it a goal on the ice, but after a review, the puck never crossed the goal line, and it was correctly reversed. The Bruins dictated the physicality off the bat, highlighted by a thunderous Trent Frederic hit on Evgeni Kuznetsov and one of similar caliber by Brad Marchand on Brett Pesce.

Boston then produced the game’s first high-quality chance on a beautiful Jesper Boqvist dish to Frederic down low, but Pytor Kochetkov made a rare poke check, breaking up the play. The game’s first two penalties were matching roughing minors against Charlie McAvoy and Jake Guentzel, resulting in a four-on-four situation. Nothing occurred on the sequence before both penalties expired. Overall, it was a strong structural period for the Bruins, and the shots on goal were even 4-4.

Second Period

Just 0:35 into the second, Carolina received the game’s first power play after a Morgan Geekie tripping minor. With 0:14 left on that penalty, Marchand was called for kneeing, resulting in a brief five-on-three for the Hurricanes. They could not capitalize on both Bruins’ penalties as the penalty killers put on a tremendous display, which ended with a big Jeremy Swayman glove save. Following the special teams’ time, Carolina controlled the game by putting the Black and Gold back on their heels.

They then had a great chance when Seth Jarvis got behind the Boston defense on a partial breakaway, but Swayman made a dazzling right-pad stop. However, the Hurricanes struck first on a successful Michigan attempt by Andrei Svechnikov, making it 1-0. The goal was initially waived off, but after a video review, it was confirmed as a good goal. Swayman was asked about the goal after the game. “He’s so good at that, I couldn’t believe it. It’s something I’ll work on in skills practice tomorrow.” Carolina continued to apply pressure and struck again to make it 2-0.

Teuvo Teravainen dribbled a loose puck under Swayman to extend his team’s lead. The Bruins got their first power play of the night with just under 6:00 to go. They didn’t cash in but cut the lead in half after the man-advantage opportunity. McAvoy blasted a shot through Kochetkov to make it 2-1 after Boston couldn’t generate much offense all period. The Hurricanes had the edge in shots on goal 15-6, with Swayman making 13 saves, which kept his team in the game.

Third Period

The first few shifts featured high-tempo hockey, with both teams trading chances but coming up empty. Boston produced a golden chance on a Pavel Zacha slick pass to Danton Heinen, who was going hard to the net, but Kochetkov was able to squeeze the puck in his armpit. Jakub Lauko made a great outside move and got to the net. However, Kochetkov shut the door, preserving the lead.

The Bruins then suffered a tough break after Zacha tried clearing the puck out of a net-mouth scramble, but he inadvertently banked it off Swayman and in. Guentzel got credit for the goal, making it 3-1. Boston had a chance to get back in the game when they received a power play, but things did not go their way. Seth Jarvis scored shorthanded on an individual effort wrap-around goal, which made it 4-1 and put the game away.

Up Next

Next, the Bruins will head on their final regular-season road trip and play the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday night. The puck drops at 8:00 p.m. on ABC, marking the season’s third and final meeting between the two teams. Pittsburgh won the first game 6-5, and the Bruins won the second 5-1.