Milestone Night for Bruins’ Marchand

Image(Photo Credit: Boston Bruins)

By: Evan Michael | Follow me on Twitter @00EvanMichael

Seven hundred NHL games under his Black N’ Gold belt, the Bruins’ Brad Marchand was asked on Hockey Hall of Fame Night in Toronto a pretty on the nose postgame question after helping his team snap a four-game losing streak with a 4-2 win over the Maple Leafs: You ever think you might be in the HHOF?

The man once known as the Nose Face Killah had a telling response: “No, No I don’t… To be honest, I don’t really think about it.”

Well, there’s many people thinking about it now. Because 700 wasn’t the only numerical accolade highlighted on Marchand’s milestone night north of the border (and earlier this week). To wit:

Speaking of highlights, the right-off-the-faceoff third period tally that gave the B’s an all-important 2-1 lead (and subsequently set “Marchy” up for the above historic record) just 11 seconds into the final frame was both indicative and illustrative of No. 63’s top-notch talent and work ethic.

Go strong to the net with speed and skill then truly put the stick to stick-to-itiveness — that’s a Brad Marchand specialty order. Thankfully for the B’s, he had one more order up his sleeve. And that proved pivotal (and point-ful) in that it became the game-winning goal later in the third. In fact, it was almost the same recipe for success: a strong shot on net, a dogged perseverance to get the rebound, then a deft finishing touch!

Like him or not, Marchand is quickly (if not so quietly) becoming one of the best players in the league this year. But, that’s not surprising for an all-star who consistently puts up big points season after season. What else is not surprising? How no matter the stage, he always finds a way to stick his nose out after a powerful performance.

Seven hundred games into his salty and successful NHL career, there’s one thing for sure about Brad Marchand. He’s not changing how he plays or who he is. And that’s definitely deserving of a few honors, be it in Boston or Toronto, right now… and perhaps even (hall of) famously later.

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 153 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

Bruins Post-Game Recap: Boston at Toronto: 11/15/19

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PHOTO CREDITS: (@MapleLeafs on Twitter)

By: Max Mainville | Check me out on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj

On the hands of a devastating 5-4 shootout loss to the Florida Panthers earlier in the week, the Boston Bruins are coming in tonight against the Toronto Maple Leafs before another game tomorrow against the Washington Capitals in hopes of ending their current four-game losing skid.

For Toronto, they are coming into the game losing each of their last two meetings with a 5-4 loss to the New York Islanders fresh in their mind only two nights ago. Toronto will be without forward Mitch Marner and Alexander Kerfoot due to injuries that will keep them out for the next few weeks. The Leafs are currently out of a playoff spot and will look to rebound here tonight against their biggest rival.

Tonight, the six most-recent inductees into the Hockey Hall of Fame will be present in the stands as the NHL celebrates it’s annual Hockey Hall of Fame Game.

Pre-Game Notes:

Arena: Scotiabank Arena – Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Home: Toronto Maple Leafs (9-7-4)

Away: Boston Bruins (11-3-4)

Last Bruins Result: 5-4 SO loss vs FLA

Starting Goaltenders:

BOS: Tuukka Rask 7-2-2 2.16 GAA .926 SV% Last Game: 25 Saves in 5-4 SO loss to FLA

TOR: Frederik Andersen 9-3-3 2.72 GAA .912 SV% Last Game: 25 Saves in 5-4 loss to NYI

Bruins Gameday Lineup:

Bruins forwards Jake DeBrusk, Zach Senyshyn, Brett Ritchie, Karson Kuhlman, and David Backes are all out with injuries while defensemen Torey Krug, Kevan Miller, and John Moore remain out of the gameday lineup. Head Coach Bruce Cassidy said on Thursday that Brett Ritchie is the only one that has a chance to play tomorrow against the Capitals.

First Period:

Following a great ceremony to honor the Hall of Fame inductees, the two teams get underway. In the opening five minutes or so, the Bruins had the better of the puck possession even though the Leafs took an early lead in the shot department. Just about seven minutes in, Andreas Johnsson manages to get around Charlie McAvoy for a partial breakaway, but Rask makes the pad stop. Less than a minute after, Pastrnak gets a brilliant chance right in front of the net but is robbed by Andersen – we got a game ladies and gentlemen.

Halfway through the opening frame, both teams are going back-and-forth still. The puck seems to be taking bounces and deflections off of bodies on either side of the ice and the physicality is through the roof. Chris Wagner landed a big hit on Trevor Moore in the neutral zone and Trent Frederic has landed numerous hits of his own already. Connor Clifton too:

With about seven minutes left in the period, the Maple Leafs get the best few chances of the game so far with a couple really close shots that were towards an open Bruins net but the shot either missed or was blocked by a Bruin in front. Boston manages to recover and get it out of the zone.

Right after that, Matt Grzelcyk had the puck behind Frederik Andersen and makes a slick pass to Charlie Coyle who was open in that bumper spot that Patrice Bergeron has had success in and buries the game’s first goal, 1-0 Bruins. Great sequence from Boston who dealt with the onslaught of Toronto for a few minutes to bring the play right-back against a tired Leafs line and capitalize, taking some momentum away from the home Toronto crowd.

With 5:51 remaining in the first, the Bruins take the first penalty of the game as David Pastrnak gets sent to the box for two minutes for interference. Toronto needs a tying goal here on the power-play before the buzzer sounds. However, Boston says no to that idea and make a strong kill, back to five-on-five. Leafs fail to get even a single shot on the man-advantage.

3:23 shows on the score clock in the Scotiabank Arena and the Toronto Maple Leafs take their first penalty. Nic Shore gets called on a holding minor. Unlike the Bruins, they struggle to get any momentum at all on the power-play and just looked out of sorts, failing to move the puck around enough and the Maple Leafs successfully kill it off late in this period.

The first period ends after a couple icings by the B’s. Fairly competitive twenty minutes of hockey that sees Boston holding a one-to-nothing lead over Toronto. Solid two-way hockey and much of the same is needed for a full 60-minutes.

Shots on Goal: BOS: 9 TOR: 8

Score: 1-0 Bruins – Goals: Coyle (3) Assists: Grzelcyk (4), Bjork (1)

Second Period:

Again in the opening minutes of the period, the Bruins are showing really good focus and confidence in their game and it has been working out well. Patrice Bergeron has been fantastic on the defensive side of the puck and after each whistle, there seems to be more and more shoving. Tensions are running high as usual with Boston and Toronto.

Toronto is still getting their brief moments of attacks as they have become known for in the past few seasons, but Tuukka Rask has done his job in between the pipes with some big saves. Rask hasn’t been great as of late but looks dialed in thus far.

As Toronto builds momentum, they manage to cycle the puck from behind the Bruins net to Jake Muzzin who one-times it towards the net. Auston Matthews gets his stick on the puck, deflecting it past Tuukka Rask. The on-ice officials reviewed the play for a potential high-stick on the deflection, but after a short review, the goal stands and the Maple Leafs officially ties the game at one.

Boston has a great chance to sway the momentum back to them immediately after the tying marker after a brutal hit by Charlie McAvoy that resulted in a breakaway for Sean Kuraly only moments later. However, Kuraly tries too hard to find a corner on Frederik Andersen and ends up missing the net high and wide.

Later on in the period, Boston gets their second opportunity on a man-advantage when Andreas Johnsson gets caught tripping Charlie McAvoy near the offensive blueline and he goes to the box for two minutes. Boston gets a few really good shots including a great chance for Bergeron off a rebound chance that hits the outside of the post, penalty comes to an end – back to even-strength.

Within the final few minutes of the middle regulation period, Boston makes a few bad turnovers that leads to a wide-open John Tavares with a chance to snipe one past Rask, but he takes a slash from Bergeron that makes him miss the net. Boston to the penalty-kill again. Tuukka Rask made two key saves on a pair of Matthews one-timers, giving Boston the chance to make the kill and they indeed do, five-on-five once again.

Not nearly as good as a period for Boston, but they manage to make it to the intermission tied at one.

Shots on Goal: BOS: 19 TOR: 25

Score: 1-1 – Goals: Matthews (14) Assists: Muzzin (8), Nylander (9)

Third Period:

No time wasted. Boston wins the opening faceoff of the period and they bring it in with Brad Marchand. Marchand takes a wrist shot on net and Andersen leaves a rebound right there for Marchand who shoots it again, this time crossing the goal line and the Bruins take a 2-1 lead eleven seconds into the third period of play.

Boston’s lead does not last long as less than four minutes into the third, the Bruins have a terrible miscommunication in their own zone, resulting in Kasperi Kapanen being all alone and he beats Rask with the shot. This hockey game is tied at two goals apiece with sixteen minutes left to play.

That does not last long either, Charlie Coyle works hard along the end boards behind Andersen, feeding Marchand in the slot. Marchand fakes a wrist shot as he gathers the puck, shoots a shot that’s blocked, but gets his own rebound to bury it again. Three goals in 4:57, Bruins score 1:12 after Toronto’s goal, 3-2 Bruins.

The B’s continue their offensive opportunities shortly after the midway mark of the third period as the first-line of Marchand, Bergeron, and Pastrnak gets more than one really good chance to score, but Andersen stops it. Boston is putting a lot of shots towards the net, creating rebounds from the puck hitting either Andersen or the traffic in front of the net.

As the game is winding down, the Leafs are clearly trying for a hail mary play to tie this hockey game. They have iced the puck on numerous occasions in hopes of getting a long-distance pass for an odd-man rush. Boston has done a solid job thus far limiting speed in the neutral zone in the final regulation frame.

With 1:30 left to tick away, captain Zdeno Chara buries the empty-net goal to give Boston a two-goal advantage. Leafs captain John Tavares shatters his stick across the post in frustration and Boston will end their four-game losing streak with a 4-2 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Shots on Goal: BOS: 34 TOR: 31

Final Score: 4-2 Bruins

Max’s Three Stars:

1st Star: BOS F Brad Marchand – 2 Goals (GWG), 7 Shots, 1 Hit, 18:21 TOI

2nd Star: BOS G Tuukka Rask – 29 Saves, .935 SV%

3rd Star: BOS F Charlie Coyle – 1 Goal, 1 Assist, 3 Shots, 1 Block, 19:13 TOI

Boston is right back at it tomorrow against the Washington Capitals in the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. The Bruins are now 12-3-4 on the season.

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 153 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

Bruins Game 19 Preview: Toronto Maple Leafs

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PHOTO CREDITS: (CHARLES KRUPA/THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)

By: Max Mainville | Check me out on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj

Only a few days removed from one of the worst third-periods in recent memory, the Boston Bruins are back against their Original Six rivals, the Toronto Maple Leafs, in game one of a back-to-back this weekend. Sunday’s 5-4 shootout loss to the Florida Panthers marked the fourth-consecutive loss by the Bruins, dropping their record to 11-3-4, but still hold the first place position in the Atlantic Division.

Toronto is not doing so hot as of late, either, losing two consecutive games and falling out of a playoff spot early on in the season. Not long after the return of captain John Tavares, the Leafs lost forward Mitch Marner for the next four weeks due to a high ankle sprain. Toronto also recently saw the return of forward Zach Hyman, but still lost a 5-4 game to the New York Islanders. The Leafs are ninth in the Eastern Conference with a 9-7-4 record.

Starting Goaltenders:

BOS: Tuukka Rask 7-2-2 2.16 GAA .926 SV% Last Game: 25 Saves in 5-4 SO loss to FLA

TOR: Frederik Andersen (Likely) 9-3-3 2.72 GAA .912 SV% Last Game: 25 Saves in 5-4 loss to NYI

Who’s Hot:

Auston Matthews is one of the lone players not injured right now on the Maple Leafs so he is being tasked with the majority of the workload and he has stepped up to the plate. The superstar forward has points in five-straight games, improving his season numbers to 13-13-26 totals in 20 games played. Matthews has not scored a goal in the last three games, but has tallied seven assists in those games including a four-assist effort against the Chicago Blackhawks on November 10th.

Surprisingly, Danton Heinen has been really good for the Bruins as of late. The 24-year-old forward only has 4-4-8 numbers in 18 games in 2019-2020, but has scored points in each of the last two games. The Athletic’s Joe McDonald, (@JoeyMacHockey on Twitter), wrote an article on Friday about the recent play of Heinen and how even though he hasn’t come big on the score sheet, he still has played a great game – improving his net-front play and strength along the boards. Heinen has become a great versatile player and that article highlights that.

David Krejci has dealt with some early-season injuries that has halted his play, but yet the veteran center still has 2-7-9 numbers in 12 games and has six points in his last five games. Against the Panthers, Krejci played 17:34 of ice-time and tallied two assists on Anders Bjork’s power-play marker and Zdeno Chara’s third of the year. Both assists were primary helpers.

Who’s Not:

Kasperi Kapanen is going to be relied on a bit more with the absence of Mitch Marner and for the Maple Leafs, that production is going to need to come sooner rather than later. The Kuopio, Finland native has five goals and six assists for eleven points in 20 games on the campaign, but only has one point in his last five games – a goal scored against the Islanders. Kapanen, 24, signed a three-year contract extension with Toronto worth $3.2 million per season last summer.

Bruins Head Coach Bruce Cassidy said recently that defenceman’s Charlie McAvoy’s play as of late has not been bad, but the production levels are just not there right now. Without power-play quarterback Torey Krug in the lineup, McAvoy needs to put up more points than his 0-4-4 numbers show now. It may be a lot to ask of him to play better offensively when he has been decent on the defensive side, but successful teams have showed that offensive threats on the blueline can pay off in the long and short term.

Milestone Watch:

Boston Bruins:

  • F Brad Marchand is playing in his 700th career NHL regular-season game
  • F Patrice Bergeron is one even-strength goal away (214) from passing Cam Neely (214) for sole possession of 6th-most even-strength goals in Bruins history
  • F Patrice Bergeron is one power-play goal away (99) from 100 career NHL power-play goals

Toronto Maple Leafs:

  • F John Tavares is three assists away (397) from 400 career NHL assists

Bruins vs Leafs Outlook:

It is only November 15th and this is the third meeting of four between the Boston Bruins and Toronto Maple Leafs in the 2019-2020 NHL regular-season, with the fourth and final game taking place on March 14th in Boston. So far this season, the Bruins are winning the season series with a regulation win and an overtime loss back in October.

Friday’s contest in Toronto will be another battle of two teams dealing with injuries. For Boston, they will be without forwards Jake DeBrusk (lower-body), David Backes (upper-body), Zach Senyshyn (lower-body), and Karson Kuhlman (leg) as well as defensemen Torey Krug (upper-body), Kevan Miller (lower-body), and John Moore (upper-body). Forward Trent Frederic has been called up to the NHL and will play tonight as well. The Maple Leafs will be without forward Mitch Marner (ankle) and forward Alexander Kerfoot (face).

Boston’s power-play fell to third in the league at 30.5%, but still has a dangerous man-advantage along with their 82.1% penalty-kill percentage (13th in NHL). Toronto’s power-play needs work at 17.6%, while their penalty-kill is not much better at a 75.3% success rate so far this season.

The six most recent Hockey Hall of Fame inductees will be in attendance tonight as the Bruins and Maple Leafs host the annual Hockey Hall of Fame Game in the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00pm EST.

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 153 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

Boston’s Goaltending Strategy Extending Into The Playoffs

( Photo Credit: John Cordes/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images )

By: Michael DiGiorgio  |  Follow Me On Twitter @BostonDiGiorgio

 

After Tim Thomas solidified a championship-winning run for the Boston Bruins in 2011, he took a longer than expected sabbatical from the NHL leaving Tuukka Rask the keys to the kingdom. Rask has been the Bruins sole beneficiary to their successful season since 2012. A recent question to Head Coach Bruce Cassidy by The Athletics’s Fluto Shinzawa has made Bruins fans wonder, how long until teams are using the same goalie tandems they’re using in the regular season in the playoffs?

Fluto Shinzawa’s question to Cassidy centered around how goalie tandems are so heavily used in the regular season, but perish in the playoffs entirely. Fluto asked if and when we will see the same regular-season timeshare used in the playoffs. “I don’t know if it will be this year. But I think eventually, if they’re structured that way during the regular season, then why would you necessarily change it in the playoffs? So I could see it happening, definitely. Absolutely,” Cassidy said during one of his pressers. For years, the NHL has relied heavily on one goaltender to carry a team throughout a playoff run. Martin Brodeur led his New Jersey Devils to three Stanley Cups; two of which he had played over 70 games in the regular season.

Dominik Hasek had played in 65 games before his first cup with Detroit. Jonathan Quick led his Los Angeles Kings to two cups, playing in 69 and 49 regular-season games in their respective years. Tim Thomas played in 57 regular-season games in 2011, before hoisting the cup in June 2012. Starting goaltenders have always been expected to play most of the regular season, and continue that regularity into the playoffs. Recently, the NHL has seen goalies’ workload split almost evenly between starter and backup in the regular season. Teams have been focusing on finding reliable backups who can give rest to their star keeper. It’s only a matter of time before we see this continue into the postseason.

Andrei Vasilvesky is Tampa Bay’s young promising goaltender, who has already won the Vezina Trophy (best goaltender in the regular season) at the age of 24. He was part of the Tampa Bay Lightning’s historic run last year when Tampa roared through the entire NHL racking up 128 points. The 2018-2019 Lightning won 76% of their games, in large part due to their lethal offense and stingy defense and goaltending. Vasilevsky played in 53 games last season. The Lightning were not only heavy favorites to sweep the Blue Jackets in the first round of the playoffs, but was predicted to walk into the Stanley Cup Final. The Lightning (and the rest of the NHL) were stunned to see the Columbus Blue Jackets sweep the series four games to none. Vasilevsky’s regular-season timeshare was questioned and many wondered if he was overused.

The 2019 Stanley Cup Final was represented by two goalies: Tuukka Rask and Jordan Binnington. Binnington at one time played for the Bruins’ farm system as an emergency loan before ultimately starting for the St. Louis Blues. The Blues were at the bottom of the standings by Christmas and were viewed as heading for a rebuilding year and sellers at the upcoming trade deadline. Jordan Binnington received the call-up because their current goalie, Jake Allen, sported a 2.83 goals-against average and a .905 save percentage. Binnington sparked a winning streak in the Blues and appeared in 32 regular-season games and eventually carried his team to the Final. Binnington’s usage during the regular season had been a unique situation, but the message stays the same: goalies who have more rest during the regular season enter the playoffs fresh. They fare extremely well the deeper the playoff run extends.

Tuukka’s situation was more common. He had never had a strong backup who could handle a larger workload. They swung and missed on numerous back-ups including Malcolm Subban, Zane McIntyre, and Nicklas Svedberg. Anton Khudobin seemed to handle the backup role quite well, but was given a two year, $5 million raise from the Dallas Stars and the Bruins were unwilling to match for a perennial backup. In the 2018 off-season Don Sweeney, current General Manager of the Boston Bruins, signed former New York Islander starter Jaroslav Halak to take on Rask’s backup duties. He was signed to a $5.5 million deal over two years, which exceeds Khudobin’s raise.

The difference here is that Halak was a long-time starter for the Canadiens, Blues, and Islanders. He had the resume that could withstand a long season with dependable starting opportunities, which is something the previous backups lacked. Halak most recently guarded the Islanders’ goal from the 2014-2017 seasons. The Islanders had a strenuous 2017-2018 season allowing the most shots on goal in the entire NHL, making Halak’s job harder than it already was. He posted a weak 2.80 goals-against average on Long Island. Halak came into Boston giving Rask something he wasn’t used to a reliable backup who can handle a substantial amount of starts appearing in 40 games in the 2018-2019 season. Halak was back to his old form in the black and gold posting a 2.34 goals-against average and a .922 save percentage.

 

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Halak’s reliable play put Tuukka in a fantastic situation to tend the twine deep into the playoffs. It, unfortunately, did not gain the Bruins a championship, but Rask was often the best player on the ice throughout the playoffs, which can be attributed to his regular-season rest. The closest we’ve seen to a team using a goalie tandem in the playoffs was the Pittsburgh Penguins during their historic run winning back-to-back championships in 2016 and 2017. In 2016, Marc-Andre Fleury was one of the team’s biggest stars, which is a high accolade playing alongside Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Phil Kessel, and Kris Letang. Fleury played in 58 games in the regular season, with a promising young goalie prospect, Matt Murray, only providing rest for 13 games.

Jeff Zatkoff played in the remaining 11 games. Fleury, a three-time Cup winner, was injured in the second game of the playoffs, ceding the crease to Murray. Behind some impeccable offensive firepower, Murray and the Penguins won their fourth Stanley Cup championship. The following season the two net-minders split time almost evenly. The Penguins gave Fleury the starting nod come playoff time. Fleury was a force in the first two playoff series, ensuring his team won both. He was eventually pulled in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals after allowing four goals on nine shots. Murray started the rest of the way, earning the franchise’s fifth championship.

The goalie tandem is not unheard of in the NHL but has not been viewed as best practice. Certain circumstances have shown that it is necessary. If a goalie in the regular season benefits from a reliable backup, what’s stopping that same philosophy in the playoffs? The Bruins are set up to be one of the best teams to test this theory, given they essentially have two starting-caliber goalies and a coach who is not afraid to play the hot hand, regardless of a player’s salary. These upcoming playoffs could come with an interesting twist if Cassidy decides that Halak and Rask can co-exist in the sport’s most crucial time of the year.

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 153 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

Bruins No Longer Playing “Lights Out” Hockey

Image result for bruins panthers power outage

(Photo Credit: NHL.com)

By: Evan Michael | Follow me on Twitter @00EvanMichael

On Military Appreciation night at TD Garden, all the accolades went to those who were suited up in the stands. And rightfully so.

Because what happened to those in Black N’ Gold who suited up on the ice, especially from the 3rd period onward… well, it was woefully void of anything appreciatory, celebratory or congratulatory.

In short, the lights literally and figuratively went out on the Boston Bruins.

On a night everyone was supposed to remember for all the right reasons — sacrifice, duty, service — the Bruins gave us a performance we’ll remember for all the wrong ones. Ironically, it involved the team lacking all of the aforementioned qualities during a stretch of hockey that was easily the worst I’ve ever seen in my *lifetime.

*(I’m not counting the forgettable fiasco YouTube’d below since I only heard the expletives shouted from the other room by family members and was told later that everyone was seeing “Stars” — and not the kind I should be dreaming about. Then again, how can you dream when nightmare scenarios like this happen as a hockey-loving kid…)

 

Speaking of things that will keep you up all night… up 4-0 with twenty minutes of hockey left to play on home ice — and in major need of a win after losing three uninspired games in a row — the B’s treated all their fans, and those in uniform let’s not forget, to one mistake and mishap after another.

This led to four unanswered goals from a truly powerless Panthers club and pulled the plug on any electricity Boston originally brought to the game, TD Garden grids aside (not to be confused with the ol’ Boston Garden grid that flexed some series outage awesomeness during the ’88 Stanley Cup Finals against Edmonton).

 

You know who also had an outage of epic proportion in this grotesque game? Tuukka Rask. The “Big O” we were all hoping for was supposed to be on the scoreboard, not the switch board. And after the first two periods, it looked pretty pretty pretty good. Talk about enthusiasm being curbed shortly thereafter.

From everyone rooting for a shutout, the B’s were soon heading for a SHOOTOUT — Rask letting in at least two soft goals in the interim. And since it’s an NHL rule that Boston can never win after OT, you could see the extra point evaporating as quickly as Coach Cassidy’s lackluster line-up of would-be scorers (who are all bereft of breakaway abilities, never mind shootout sureness).

Thank goodness it’s only November. If there is such a thing as a “Stanley Cup Hangover,” then it may be cured for the B’s by the holidays as opposed to February or March when it could be too late to recover. But unlike simply flipping a switch to restore power, these beleaguered Bruins will now have to work harder than they have since the postseason to get all the energy back from their hot start.

After four consecutive losses, with the fourth coming as a result of blowing a four-goal lead to a team from Florida, things are indeed looking dark in Bruins Nations right now. Maybe it’ll LIGHT a fire for a team in desperate need of a spark!

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 153 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

Bruins Game 18 Preview: Florida Panthers

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PHOTO CREDITS: (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

By: Max Mainville | Check me out on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj

Boston’s strong start of the 2019-2020 season has taken a recent downward spiral with the Bruins losing three consecutive games to the Montreal Canadiens, Detroit Red Wings, and Philadelphia Flyers (SO), bringing their record to a still-respectable 11-3-3. Two of the three losses have been by one goal and the loss to Detroit required an empty-net goal as well. Boston is fifth in the league standings with 25 points.

Following a big free-agent acquisition of goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky, the Florida Panthers are having a decent start to the campaign. Florida has a 8-4-5 record and while the wins have not been coming early on, they have been able to earn at least a point in 13 of their 17 games played and have positioned themselves in the second wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference.

Starting Goaltenders:

BOS: Tuukka Rask 7-2-1 1.99 GAA .933 SV% Last Game: 28 Saves in 4-2 loss vs DET

FLA: Sergei Bobrovsky (Likely) 6-3-4 3.39 GAA .884 SV% Last Game: 34 Saves in 2-1 loss vs NYI

Who’s Hot:

Aleksander Barkov has been the main superstar on the Panthers since he was drafted second-overall in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, accumulating 140-227-367 numbers in his 430 career NHL games. This season, Barkov has been on another level, scoring five goals and 17 assists for 22 points in 17 games – leading the Panthers in assists and points. The 24-year-old is also on a five-game point streak with four of those five games being two-point nights.

Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak are always on fire, even though the duo is combined for only two points in the last three games. Marchand scored in the last game against the Philadelphia Flyers, but Pastrnak was left off the score sheet. Pastrnak did have a secondary assist against the Red Wings that was later taken away due to a scoring change, ending his point streak at 15 games. Don’t expect these two to stay off the score sheet for much longer.

Jonathan Huberdeau has been with Florida since the 2011 NHL Entry Draft and with the emergence of Barkov, he too has seen point increases and has been one of the top players in the league. The 26-year-old forward has 9-12-21 totals in 17 games and is riding on a five-game point streak as well. Huberdeau leads the Panthers in goals with nine.

Who’s Not:

Fresh off his brand-new contract extension, defenceman Charlie McAvoy is still yet to break out in the ’19/’20 season so far and it may be time to wonder what is going on. McAvoy has 0-4-4 totals in the opening seventeen games this year, but has seen his defensive partners change throughout the game due to his struggles. McAvoy is still averaging 20+ minutes-per-game and now with Torey Krug out of the lineup for Tuesday’s game, Bruce Cassidy and the Bruins need McAvoy to step up in a big way.

For a player who is making $10 million per season until the 2025-26 season, Sergei Bobrovsky has not met the high expectations early on in the season. The 31-year-old netminder has a 6-3-4 record this season with a 3.39 goals-against-average and a .884 save percentage. Bobrovsky allowed five goals two games ago against the Capitals in an overtime loss and has not been at the level that earned him the large payday last summer.

Milestone Watch:

Boston Bruins:

  • F Brad Marchand is playing in his 699th career NHL regular-season game
  • F Patrice Bergeron is one power-play goal away (99) from 100 NHL power-play goals

Florida Panthers:

  • F Evgenii Dadonov is three assists away (97) from 100 career NHL assists
  • F Aleksander Barkov is two goals away (140) from tying Nathan Horton (142) for 5th-most goals in Panthers history
  • F Aleksander Barkov is two assists away (227) from tying Robert Svehla (229) for 4th-most assists in Panthers history

Bruins vs Panthers Outlook:

In the history of both franchises, the Boston Bruins have a combined record of 54-35-6-5 in 100 games against the Florida Panthers, including a 2-2-0 record in the 2018-19 season. Boston took a 7-3 win on March 23rd and a 4-3 win on March 7th from the Panthers while Florida won a 5-0 game on December 14th and a 4-1 game on March 30th.

As mentioned, the Bruins come into tonight’s game on a three-game losing streak – the longest of the new season and will look to end that streak tonight. Boston has been close to winning games against the Montreal Canadiens and the Philadelphia Flyers, but were unable to come away with the two points. It has not been just one thing that has caused the losses, but just a combination of injured players, slow starts, and mistakes that can be fixed.

For Florida, they are still looking to gain traction to become a more-dominate team in the Atlantic Division and even the Eastern Conference. If goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky can play like he did with the Columbus Blue Jackets at the end of last season and into the postseason, this Panthers team can be a true challenge for the other 30 franchises.

Boston still has the best power-play in the entire league, scoring at a 29.8% rate while on the man-advantage. Florida will look to compete against that with their 12th-best penalty-kill in the NHL, killing off 83% of the penalties they take. On the power-play, the Panthers have a 22.6% success rate – going against Boston’s 84.6% penalty-kill (9th in the NHL).

Head Coach Bruce Cassidy announced that defenceman Torey Krug will miss tonight’s game with an upper-body injury while Urho Vaakanainen comes in the lineup for his third NHL game as a replacement.

It is Military Appreciation Night in the TD Garden tonight. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00pm EST.

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 153 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

Bruins Game 16 Preview: Detroit Red Wings

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PHOTO CREDITS: (Getty Images)

By: Max Mainville | Check me out on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj

Another short rest period and the Boston Bruins are right back at it Friday night with their first meeting of the 2019-2020 season against the Detroit Red Wings. The Bruins are coming off of their second regulation loss of the year, a 5-4 defeat at the hands of the Montreal Canadiens in the Bell Centre. As of November 7th, the B’s are now third in the overall league standings with an overall record of 11-2-2.

The Detroit Red Wings are going through big changes since their dominate run during the 1990s and 2000s, resulting in them missing the playoffs in each of the last three seasons. To start the new campaign, the Red Wings are 4-12-1 after playing 17 games, putting them tied for dead-last in the entire National Hockey League with a measly nine points.

Starting Goaltenders:

BOS: Tuukka Rask 7-1-1 1.88 GAA .936 SV% Last Game: 26 Saves in 5-4 loss to MTL

DET: Jimmy Howard (Not Confirmed*) 2-8-0 3.99 GAA .887 SV% Last Game: 26 Saves in 5-1 loss vs NYR

*Goaltender may change prior to puck drop.

Who’s Hot:

David Pastrnak became the first Boston Bruins player to become the NHL’s first 30-point scorer in a season since Bobby Orr (1974-75) in Tuesday’s loss to the Canadiens, a game where Pastrnak scored a single goal – extending his current point streak to 13 games. The 23-year-old has 15-15-30 numbers in fifteen games this season and has continued to be a true force for other teams to be wary of at any time. Pastrnak nearly created the game-tying goal in the dying seconds of the game but failed to score. Either way, he has been hot.

When your team has twelve losses in the first 17 games of a season, it is expected to not have any players completely dominating a game. For Detroit, forward Anthony Mantha is the number one scoring player on the roster right now, leading the team with 9-6-15 numbers in 17 games. In addition, Mantha is a -8 rating on the ice and has twelve penalty minutes thus far. The 20th-overall pick in the 2013 NHL Draft tallied one assist on the lone goal scored by the Wings in Wednesday’s loss to the Rangers.

Torey Krug has been the quarterback of the Bruins offensive strength on the blueline for the past few seasons but started the year slower than in the past. However, the 5-foot-9 defenceman has points in four consecutive games, bringing his season totals to 2-10-12 in 15 games played. Ten of those twelve points have come on Boston’s dangerous power-play.

Who’s Not:

As of November 7th, there is no confirmation of who gets the starting job for the Red Wings in the net on Friday night, but either way, they will not have a goalie with recent success playing. Both Jimmy Howard (2-8-0) and Jonathan Bernier (2-4-1) have losing records and average nearly four goals-against-per-game, (Howard – 3.99, Bernier – 3.51). Each one of the netminders has the same save percentage at .887%.

While Tuukka Rask’s numbers are fantastic, it is worth noting that Rask had a poor outing against the Canadiens, allowing five goals on 31 shots against with a few goals that he would most definitely like to have back. The Bruins, however, are not too concerned with Rask as they are giving him the start against the Wings on Friday. For a team that is 11-2-2, there is not a whole lot to be concerned about right now.

On the flip side, the entire Detroit offense is ice cold right now. In the past three games, the Wings have a combined two goals while allowing a total of fifteen goals against, including a 4-0 shutout loss to the Florida Panthers last Saturday in Florida. Detroit’s league-worst -33 goal differential on the season is a testament to that statement and is a reason for their very poor record.

Milestone Watch:

Boston Bruins:

  • F Patrice Bergeron is one even-strength goal away (214) from passing Cam Neely (214) for sole possession of 6th-most even-strength goals in Red Wings history

Detroit Red Wings:

  • F Frans Nielson is four assists away (296) from 300 career NHL assists

Bruins vs Red Wings Outlook:

Last season, the Boston Bruins lost the four-game season series against the Detroit Red Wings, finishing with a record of 1-2-1. Boston’s lone victory over the Wings was a devastating 8-2 win on home ice on October 13th, 2018. Detroit’s biggest win over Boston was a 6-3 win on March 31st.

Boston still has the best power-play percentage in the NHL, scoring at an impressive 31.4% while the Red Wings have the worst penalty-kill in the entire league at a 66.7% success rate. Detroit’s man-advantage has not been good either, scoring at a 12.7% rate – the 25th-best in the league. The Bruins’ penalty-kill is fifth in the National Hockey League at 86.7% so far this season. The Boston Bruins will have a clear advantage on paper across all specialty teams for Friday’s contest. It is also fair to note that Bruins forward Jake DeBrusk will not travel with the team to Detroit due to a lower-body injury that has not been disclosed further.

There are even sportsbooks that have odds published for the game. Honestly, it doesn’t matter which site you scroll through because the Bruins are clear favorites. Take a bit of time to go through this list of sports betting sites because most of them have updated odds. They’re sites that have a good reputation and are more trustworthy than others out there. There might be a few that haven’t released numbers for Friday games yet so just checking if that’s the case.

Puck drop for Friday’s game is scheduled for 7:30pm EST in the Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Michigan.

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 152 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

Postgame Recap, November 5th | Montreal Defeats Boston 5-4

Image result for boston bruins vs montreal canadiens(Photo Credits: SF Gate)

By: Liz Rizzo | Follow me on Twitter:  @pastagrl88

Old rivalries die hard and tonight things got heated at the Bell Centre as Boston played the second of their back-to-back. The Bruins were looking to carry over their momentum from the previous win over the Pittsburgh Penguins, however lady luck would not be on their side as they played North of the border.

Game Recap

Montreal opened the first period up as Victor Mete got the Habs on board with a wrist shot at 1:13. However, with five minutes left in the first,  the Bruins would tie things up as David Pastrnak slapped his 15th goal of the season past Carey Price.  As defensive skills were breaking down  Boston’s end, Tomas Tatar would net a wrist shot in the Bruins goal, making the score 2-1. Boston would try to continue to find their legs, but the Habs took advantage as Paul Byron cushioned the lead late in the first, making the score 3-1.

With the second period underway, the boys in Black and Gold would mount a comeback when Connor Clifton sent a wrister in the Habs net. Boston would later tie in the second as Anders Bjork netted one in after a pass from Charlie McAvoy. Unfortunately, seconds later Victor Mete would score his second of the night, putting Montreal back in the lead 4-3.

Things started to shift for the Bruins as they opened up in the third period. Sean Kuraly would tie the game 4-4  when he sent a wrist shot in the back of the Habs net. With momentum swinging back and forth, Boston looked to have taken the lead when Charlie Coyle jammed one in, however, the goal was reversed for being offside after a coach’s challenge.

With the score still tied at 4-4, Montreal would once again gain the lead when Ben Chiarot sent one sailing in Boston’s net. The Bruins made one final push, only to close the game with a final score of 5-4. Tonight’s loss marks their second regulation loss of the season as Montreal ended their six-game win streak.

Game Stats

The Bruins are still first in the Atlantic Division with an 11-2-2 record with Montreal improving to an 8-5 record, fifth in the Atlantic Division. David Pastrnak continues to sizzle as he extended his game streak to 13 games. Tuukka Rask made 26 saves while Montreal’s Carey Price made 21 saves. Boston had 25 shots on goal while Montreal had 31.

History In Montreal

Bruins Captian Zdeno Chara hit a historical milestone as he played his 1,500 game tonight,  becoming the 21st player and sixth defenseman in NHL history to play that many games. Chara made his NHL debut in 1997 when he suited up for the New York Islanders.

Image result for boston bruins vs montreal canadiens zdeno chara(Photo Credits: Harry How/Getty Images)

The 42-year-old  Slovakian-native is in good company; he joins Hall of Famers Ray Bourque, Chris Chelios, Scott Stevens, Larry Murphy, and Nicklas Lidstrom as the only defensemen to hit 1,500 games. Chara is one of the very few active players to hit that benchmark. He is also the third player not born in North America to reach that record (Jaromir Jagr and Nicklas Lidstrom being the other two).

“It’s very humbling. It’s something that I will cherish and remember for the rest of my life. Obviously very proud of it too…I have so many people that I should be thanking – obviously starting with my parents. They did such a great job of raising me and so much sacrifice for me to be able to play hockey.

“My family, my wife, my children – there are so many people. I’ve been very lucky. Very grateful that I’ve been able to be in the right place at the right time and get to know some very special people along the way.

“All of my teammates, coaches…they’ve been tremendously helpful, and I wouldn’t be playing the game without them. It’s a special, special night.”

Boston will have a few days off as they travel to face the Detroit Red Wings this Friday at the Little Ceasars Arena.

WHEN TO WATCH: Friday, November 8th with puck drop at 7:30 PM

WHERE TO WATCH: NESN, NHLN, FS-O

 

 

 

Bruins Game 15 Preview: Montreal Canadiens

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PHOTO CREDITS: (Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

By: Max Mainville | Check me out on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj

For the second time this season, the Bruins are playing in the second game of a back-to-back. Last week, the Bruins won back-to-back games against the St. Louis Blues on Saturday and the New York Rangers on Sunday. Last night, Boston took home a 6-4 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins after losing a 3-0 at one point in the game. Boston’s win improved their record to 11-1-2 and secures their spot for second in the overall league standings, only one point behind the Washington Capitals.

The Montreal Canadiens have not won in November so far, losing 4-1 to the Dallas Stars on Saturday. On the season, the Canadiens have a 7-5-2 record after their opening fourteen games and have put up a 6-4-0 record in their last ten games. Montreal is fifth in the Atlantic Division and is only one point of the second Wild Card position currently held by the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Starting Goaltenders:

BOS: Tuukka Rask 7-0-1 1.49 GAA .949% Last Game: 30 Saves in 5-2 win vs OTT

MTL: Carey Price (Not Confirmed) 6-4-1 2.64 GAA .915 SV% Last Game: 36 Saves in 4-1 loss to DAL

Who’s Hot:

Brad Marchand made history in many ways in Monday’s win over the Penguins, scoring five points for the second time in four games, bringing his season totals to 10-18-28 on his 13-game point streak. Marchand and Pastrnak are now the first pair of winger teammates in NHL history to average 2+ points-per-game in the first 14 games of a season, further cementing how good of a duo they have become. Marchand now leads the NHL in assists with eighteen and is second in points behind Pastrnak.

 

Jonathan Drouin was acquired by the Canadiens from the Tampa Bay Lightning in June 2017 and in the two seasons he has played in Montreal, he has seen improvements in his scoring numbers. This season, so far, the 24-year-old is tied for the team-lead in points with 7-5-12 numbers in 14 games. Drouin has four points in his last four games, but was held pointless in his last game against the Stars in Dallas.

Tuukka Rask has been absolutely lights out in the 2019-2020 season for Boston and he is silencing the previous stigma that he is a slow-starting goaltender going through eight starts without a regulation loss. Tuukka has the best save percentage in the National Hockey League (minimum of five games played) with a .949 save percentage. Rask is also number one in the league with a 1.49 goals-against-average. The 32-year-old is on another level right now and he will look to continue it against the Canadiens.

Who’s Not:

Paul Byron has been one of those depth players for Montreal that teams are worried of. The 30-year-old forward scored 31 points in 56 games for the Canadiens last year but in ’19/’20, he only has three assists in fourteen games playing around twelve minutes a game. Montreal is in need of some extra depth scoring and Byron could add some additional scoring if he manages to get the monkey off his back.

Sean Kuraly is not known for being a high goal-scorer in the NHL, but with zero goals in 14 games, the Bruins need him to score more in these highly competitive games. Kuraly put up a career-high eight goals last season, but he has the potential to put up more even though he plays on the fourth line. Kuraly will likely score soon, but until then, he has not been great for Boston.

Milestone Watch:

Boston Bruins:

  • D Zdeno Chara is playing in his 1,500th NHL regular-season game. He becomes the 21st player and the 6th defenceman in league history to do so.
  • D Torey Krug is one point away (299) from 300 career NHL points
  • F Patrice Bergeron is one even-strength goal away (214) from passing Cam Neely (214) for sole possession of 6th-most even-strength goals in Bruins history

Montreal Canadiens:

  • F Tomas Tatar is three points away (297) from 300 career NHL points
  • G Carey Price is one shutout away (45) from tying Ken Dryden (46) for 3rd-most shutouts in Canadiens history

Bruins vs Canadiens Outlook:

Last season, the Bruins won the four-game season series against the Canadiens with a 2-1-1 record. The Bruins took home a 3-2 win on November 24th and a 4-0 win on December 17th. The Bruins lost a 3-2 overtime game on January 14th and a 3-0 loss on October 27th. Boston averaged 2.25 goals-for-per-game against Montreal, allowing an average of two goals against in that same time span.

Tonight’s game goes down in the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada – an arena where the Bruins have played a combined 61 games at. Throughout the history there, Boston has an overall record of 27-29-2-3 when playing their Original Six rivals, scoring on average 2.59 goals-for-per-game and allowing on average 2.79 goals-against-per-game.

This season, the Bruins are ahead of the Canadiens in the standings and so far, the Bruins are looking like one of the top teams in the entire NHL and their overall league position of second is further proof of that. Boston has the best power-play percentage over the other 31 teams at 30.6%. The B’s also have the ninth-best penalty-kill, rocking at 86.0%.

Montreal, on the other hand, is 15th in the league on the power-play, scoring on 20.8% of their opportunities while having a 69.8% penalty-kill percentage (28th in NHL).

Bruins Lineup News:

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 152 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!

Bruins Post-Game Recap: Ottawa at Boston: 11/02/19

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PHOTO CREDITS: (Barry Chin/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

By: Max Mainville | Check me out on Twitter @tkdmaxbjj

After a dominant October, the Boston Bruins are back to play their first game in November, against the Ottawa Senators. Boston is coming into this game on a four-game winning streak including a 5-1 win over the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday. Ottawa has not played since Sunday, a 5-2 win over the Sharks as well, but still, have a record of 3-7-1 and sit at the bottom of the Eastern Conference.

Pre-Game Notes:

Arena: TD Garden – Boston, Massachusetts, USA

Home: Boston Bruins (9-1-2)

Away: Ottawa Senators (3-7-1)

Bruins Last Game: Bruins def Sharks 5-1

Bruins Gameday Lineup:

Head Coach Bruce Cassidy said that Brett Ritchie (infection) is out of the lineup while Connor Clifton will be a healthy scratch for Steven Kampfer. Forward Joakim Nordstrom (infection) will be out for at least the next three games, resulting in the emergency call-up of forward Peter Cehlarik. Par Lindholm (upper-body) is the final scratch for the Bruins.

First Period:

Beginning the game, the Bruins came out aggressive, shooting on Anderson with multiple easy entries and a couple post-whistle scrums. Less than a minute into the game, the Senators are caught with more than five players on the ice – a too many men penalty, Boston to the man-advantage. In a short time, Torey Krug blasts a bomb from behind his own blueline all the way to the end boards right for Pastrnak, who makes a slick move to bury it early. 1-0 Bruins.

3:08 into the first period, David Backes attempted to bring the puck up and out of the Bruins zone to start the rush until Scott Sabourin comes over to throw a hit. Sabourin and Backes collide heads, causing Sabourin to fall directly to the ice head-first. The 27-year-old was unconscious on the ice for several minutes with the TD Garden dead silent, applauding when the smallest movement occurred.

David Backes was evidently shaken up at the collision, showing a bleak look on his face and eventually left to the locker room as he appeared to be crying. Completely accidental play that turned brutal. The entire benches of both teams went out to show their respect to the Ottawa forward as he was stretchered off. Sabourin did give a thumbs-up as he was wheeled off.

Following the delay, the Bruins control the play, bringing the puck in the zone on numerous occasions and just holding onto possession of the puck for a large majority. When the Senators eventually brought the puck into the zone, Charlie Coyle takes an interference penalty and Boston goes to their first penalty-kill of the game. The B’s keep Ottawa from getting even a single shot on the penalty, doing an excellent job killing it off. The game returns to even-strength.

With less than eight minutes to go in the period, the Bruins turn the puck over in the defensive zone, leading to a 3-on-1 chance for the Senators who end up missing the net on the eventual shot. A quick cycle leads to Anthony Duclair burying a one-timer, extending his point streak to four games and this game is tied 1-1.

Later in the frame, another Senators forward goes down the tunnel with what appears to be a hand/arm injury. Logan Brown came in for a hit on Bruins forward Danton Heinen in a seemingly meaningless play, but his arm appeared to get caught up on Heinen and Brown went down on the ice in evident pain. Senators now down to 14 forwards.

Ottawa showed improvements in their game as the period began to close, but the siren sounds to signify the end of the opening frame.

Shots on Goal: BOS: 11 OTT: 6

Score: 1-1 Goals – Pastrnak (13) PPG Assists: Krug (9); Duclair (5) Assists: L. Brown (2), Borowiecki (3)

Second Period:

Boston comes back after a slow second-half to the first period to score less than two minutes into the middle frame. The first line does a fantastic job keeping the puck in and somehow, Pastrnak is all alone right in front of Anderson. Instead of shooting, he waits the extra second to pass it to Patrice Bergeron who buries it, 2-1 Bruins.

In a very short amount of time after the goal, former Toronto Maple Leafs forward Connor Brown throws the puck towards the net along the goal-line and the puck manages to bounce off of Rask and into the net, Sens tie the game within the first five minutes of the second.

Again, not long afterward, the Bruins get caught themselves with too many players on the ice at the same time and they head to their second penalty-kill of the hockey game so far. Ottawa gets a few really good chances early on the man-advantage, but Tuukka Rask makes some big stops and got lucky on some missed shots to keep the puck out.

With 55 seconds left on the penalty, Marchand gets called for hooking but after the whistle, he makes a poor decision to spear DeMelo in the side, getting an additional four minutes of penalty time. Bruins have to kill off 0:55 of 5-on-3 and then over five minutes of 5-on-4 penalty-kill. Boston does a tremendous job killing over seven minutes of penalties, with a big thanks to Tuukka Rask – back to even-strength.

Boston’s power-play gets another chance with 6:07 remaining as Mark Borowiecki gets called on a slashing minor. Ottawa does a much better job preventing any opportunities to score for the B’s and Boston fails to bury one, penalty expires. However, Borowiecki heads right back to the box for another two minutes as he was caught tripping Brad Marchand, Bruins to their third power-play. Nothing. Another excellent kill for the Sens. Period ends right after.

Shots on Goal: BOS: 21 OTT: 21

Score: 2-2 Goals – Bergeron (6) Assists: Pastrnak (13), Marchand (15); C. Brown (2) Assists: Borowicki (4), DeMelo (3)

Third Period:

After ending both periods in what has been a chaotic, entertaining contest tied, both teams come out going back-and-forth at the start of the final regulation period. For the third-straight period, the Bruins strike early on as Jake DeBrusk and Danton Heinen put hard pressure on Thomas Chabot, allowing Heinen to attack a loose puck and bury it – 3-2 Bruins.

Within the next few minutes to follow the go-ahead goal, Mark Borowiecki takes his third minor penalty of the game – giving Boston yet another power-play to now extend their lead to two goals. And extend the lead is what they would do. Ottawa’s defense found themselves chasing Pastrnak who made it seem as if he was heading behind Craig Anderson, but Pasta magically slides the puck through the traffic to a wide-open Marchand – 4-2 Boston.

Boston has taken over the game since those two rapid-fire goals. The entire team has been playing at a great level, on all levels, and that continues when Jake DeBrusk does a fantastic job on the forecheck, poking it free for Heinen who feeds it back to DeBrusk for a slapshot one-timer. 5-2 Bruins final score.

Shots on Goal: BOS: 32 OTT: 32

Final Score: 5-2 Bruins

Max’s Three Stars:

1st Star: BOS F David Pastrnak – 1 Goal, 2 Assists, 3 Shots, 17:03 TOI

2nd Star: BOS G Tuukka Rask – 30 Shots, .938 SV%

3rd Star: BOS F Danton Heinen – 1 Goal (GWG), 1 Assist, 14:08 TOI

Bruins now have won five-straight games and look ahead to their first game of a back-to-back against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Monday in Boston.

Check out the new Black N’ Gold Hockey Podcast episode 151 that we recorded below! You can find our show on many worldwide platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, iHeart Radio, Spotify, SoundCloud, and Stitcher.

Please subscribe to our new Black N’ Gold Hockey YouTube channel! We’d really appreciate the continued support. Click HERE for exciting Black N’ Gold online content!!