The Bruins beat the Maple Leafs tonight 2-0 to win their second game in a row at home. They finish up a 5 game home stand by going 3-2. It is not what Bruins fans were hoping for, but they were above .500 for the home stand. It was a tight defensive battle where it took almost the entire game for a goal to be scored. Zdeno Chara scored with 3:43 left in the game. Brad Marchand put a stake in the Leafs with an empty net goal. Tuukka Rask recorded his second shutout of the season. Here are Bostonpucks.com’s 3 thoughts:
1. Mike Babcock is a really good coach
Maple Leaf teams in the past would have rolled over and played dead on the second night of back to back games. Although the Leafs got outstanding goaltending from James Reimer, they would have folded from the pressure the Bruins were getting in the first period. This Maple Leafs roster is not good, but Coach Babcock has the players buying into his system. The Maple Leafs are a team that coming into tonight were 5-1 in their last six games. If this roster were still coached by Randy Carlyle, tonight would have been a blow out. I thought this was a very good effort by the Leafs in an always difficult back to back games.
2. So I was wrong on Matt Beleskey
In the 3 thoughts post after the Minnesota game I predicted that Matt Beleskey would score a goal tonight. This prediction was based on the fact that he had been getting a lot of chances in the previous 2 games. Beleskey did not score a goal tonight, but it was his hard work along the boards that resulted in Zdeno Chara’s third period goal. He won a puck battle along the boards and passed the puck back to the point to Trotman. Trotman then moved the puck to Chara who ripped a clapper from about the faceoff dot that beat Riemer five hole. The CBC broadcast was saying it was 150 Kilometers per hour, which converts to about 93 MPH. I just have to think the Hockey Gods will reward Beleskey’s hard work sooner rather than later and he will score a goal.
3. Brad Marchand was filthy tonight
Just like I assume the Hockey Gods will reward Matt Beleskey’s hard work with a goal, they rewarded Marchand, who was the Bruins’ best player tonight, with an empty net goal. Early in the first period Marchand completely undressed Leaf’s defenseman Morgan Rielly with an inside out move, but he could not finish. He also got into a dust up with James van Riemsdyk in the first period and received a roughing penalty. Marchand (5’9″ 181) dropped his gloves and was ready to fight with the 6’3″ 200 lbs van Riemsdyk, but van Riemsdyk was not willing to go with the much smaller Marchand. Tonight was a classic Brad Marchand game. He was a pest and he was effective in all three zones.
- Tuukka Rask made all 22 saves for his second shutout of the season. Tuukka has been playing well for the past month.
- Who needs scoring to have an entertaining game. There were only 2 goals scored in this game, and one was an empty netter, but it had good flow and pace.
- Looking forward to the rematch on Tuesday in Toronto.