The Bruins came out and put together a full 60 minute effort against the Red Wings tonight. The Wings played last night at home against the Sharks, so they most likely did not get into Boston until early this morning, and the Bruins took advantage of it. The Bruins got 3 goals in the second period from Patrice Bergeron, David Krejci, and Torey Krug. The Bruins held it together in the third period, only giving up a power play goal. It was not perfect but it is certainly something to build on.
1. Frank Vatrano has looked really good.
Although he has been held off the score sheet the past 3 games Frank Vatrano has looked really good. Every game he is getting scoring opportunities and creating his own scoring opportunities with his shot. He had 4 shots tonight in 14:07 time on the ice. Vatrano is making a statement for himself to not get sent back down to Providence. I just wonder how long he will be able to keep it up. When you see him on the ice he is at max effort, or so it seems. At some point he may wear down but as long as he is generating scoring opportunities he is going to force his way to stay in Boston. It will be interesting to see when Pastrnak comes back how Claude sets the lines up.
2. The Bruins came through tonight 5-on-5
I was watching the Detroit broadcast a little tonight and they mentioned that the Bruins were only plus 1 even strength on the year so far. That stat just goes to show you what we have been saying here at Bostonpucks, that they were not generating enough 5-on-5 and they were relying on their power play. Tonight all three of the Bruins goals came 5-on-5. They need to continue to be able to score at even strength. If they can consistently score a couple goals a game that way, or more, with their power play they are going to win a lot more games than they lose. They have a pretty easy schedule for the rest of November (Toronto twice, Detroit once more and San Jose on Tuesday). They also have games against Minnesota and the Rangers. They need to take advantage of the schedule and not rely on the best power play in the NHL.
3. Detroit is soft
There have not been many games so far this year where you do not see any of the after the whistle crap. Tonight there was hardly any of it. Detroit only registered 13 hits in the game. In one way it is kind of nice to watch. The game tonight had good flow to it, and it is nice in a way, to not have the crap after the whistle that 99% of the time does not amount to a single thing. On the other hand I think this is why the Bruins match up well against Detroit. Since Detroit has moved to the Eastern Conference in the 2013-2014 season the Bruins have played them 15 times including in the playoffs. The Bruins have won 10 of those games. The Bruins have won 9 out of the last 10 and 5 in a row. Watching the Detroit broadcast in between periods they had an interview with Red Wings GM Ken Holland about the salary cap, which was interesting to hear one of the best GM’s in the NHL talk about managing the Salary Cap. One thing he said was he is balancing winning now while building toward 2017, 2018 and 2019. My prediction is Detroit’s playoff streak of 23 years will come to an end this year.
- Tuukka played really well tonight. He really has looked like the Tuukka of old since he shutout the Coyotes on October 27th.
- Even though the Bruins gave up a power play goal tonight the penalty kill has looked better the past 3 games (since the Montreal game). The Bruins have killed 11 of 13 power play opportunities against them, which is about an 85% success rate. Right now, if the Bruins penalty kill was performing at an 85% kill rate they would have the 7th best penalty kill in the NHL.