Well, it’s about that time of year again, nothing like ringing in the holidays with some good ol’ fashioned hate. We sit well past the quarter mark of the 2013-14 NHL season, but Thursday night will be the first meeting so far this year between the Bruins and their rivals, the Montreal Canadiens. Read on for the preview.
Boston Bruins vs. Montreal Canadiens
Thursday, December 5th – 7:30pm – Bell Centre, Montreal
TV: NESN, RDS Radio: 98.5 The Sports Hub
Over the course of an 82 game season that spans six plus months there are bound to be some ugly nights on the ice. The Boston Bruins had one last in Detroit. The Pavel Datsyuk-less (concussion) Red Wings exploded for three goals in a 3:56 span in the second period to take a 4-0 lead, eventually cruising to an easy 6-1 win over the top team in the Eastern Conference. The Bruins managed just 17 shots on Detroit goaltender Jonas Gustavsson, while Tuukka Rask allowed all six goals on 28 Red Wings shots in the Boston net.
The outlook of tonight’s game between the Bruins and Penguins wasn’t very bright after arch enemy Sidney Crosby chipped in a loose puck with just 0.2 seconds left in regulation to send the game to overtime. But for the second straight game, extra time turned out to be just what the doctor ordered as Bruin defenseman Torey Krug unloaded a bomb of a slap shot past Penguin goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury just 34 seconds into the extra frame to give the Bruins a 4-3 victory, the team’s fourth win in five games. Tuukka Rask was once again a critical piece of the puzzle, stopping 28 shots en route to his thirteenth win of the season in the Bruin net.
It’s been no secret this season that the Boston Bruins have tended to struggle through the second half of back-to-back games, though their record coming into last night’s game with the Rangers (two wins in three tries) wouldn’t have indicated so. And despite giving up 44 shots against and being vastly outplayed for the majority of the game, the black and gold were able to make it three wins in four tries with a 2-1 victory over the Blueshirts at Madison Square Garden. Tuukka Rask was nothing short of stellar tying a career best with 43 saves (no, the game didn’t go to overtime), and the the Merlot line had one of it’s finest performances of the season as Dan Paille, Gregory Campbell and Shawn Thornton all had points in the win.
For about 57 minutes of last night’s game between the Boston Bruins and Dallas Stars it appeared, despite yet another up-and-down effort, that the Bruins would be able to hold on to take two points and kick off their five game home-stand on the right foot. Unfortunately for the Black and Gold (even though they should know by now), hockey is a 60 minute game. Consistent with the types of blunders that have plagued Boston all season, a bad line change and a lack of defensive awareness allowed Stars forward Vernon Fiddler to sneak in on a breakaway with under three minutes remaining, and though his attempt was foiled a penalty shot was awarded after a scrambling Dennis Seidenberg hauled him down. The Stars veteran would convert his attempt to tie the game at 2-2, and then in fitting fashion former Bruins Tyler Seguin and Rich Peverley scored in the shootout to earn the extra point for Dallas and send the Bruins away with their fourth loss in five games.