We say it every night, but these two points were an absolute must. Especially with a quick turn around back to Boston for a tilt with Toronto just 20 hours from now. The Bruins had to stop the bleeding and get back on track. So they manned up and got it done. Just a nice 4-1, shut out the lights in Buffalo, kind of win. Matt Beleskey, Zdeno Chara, Ryan Spooner, and yes, Brett Connolly, all scored. And it’s really not in my nature to talk about how often we correctly predict things here at Boston Pucks so I’m not going to brag. I’m not going to say I called it, but before the game I put out this tweet:
Just something to think about….
Here are BostonPucks.com 3 Thoughts from tonight’s game:
1) Bad First Period Was Not A Good Look
Let’s get the negative out of the way first. When you’re coming off two straight games where you blow 3rd period leads in both and don’t get a point out of either contest you’d think coming out hard tonight would be a given. Nope. The Bruins were brutal in the first. Almost channel changing bad. Colin Miller gift wrapped David “Yes, I’m Still In The League” Legwand’s goal with a bad turnover behind the net. The breakout and overall lack of jump in the team really set them behind the eight ball early. And for a Max Talbot fight that was gutsy, lengthy, and pretty damn entertaining it didn’t spark the team like it should have. Loui Eriksson was about the only noticeable difference maker with a couple great chances, otherwise they stunk up the joint.
2) But That 3rd Period Was Fantastic
Let’s fast forward to the good part. My guess is after the game ended the zamboni only had to do one end of the ice because the Bruins absolutely dominated the third period. It started just 29 seconds into the third when Zdeno Chara threw what looked like a harmless shot on net from the point. But a little traffic and the quick release caught Robin Lehner off gaurd and the Chara goal propelled the Bruins forward. Ten minutes later Ryan Spooner scored five hole, marking his 3rd point of the night, when Matt Beleskey created chaos driving to the net. And of course Brett Connolly put the nail in the coffin with a beautiful wrap around empty net snipe that ended his goal scoring drought. I just loved the fact that the Bruins smelled blood and played hard to the finish. They never let up. In fact, they hammered down rather than sit back on a one goal lead.
3) Ho-hum, Ryan Spooner Is Still On Fire
How bad do you want to throw up knowing last Spring Peter Chiarelli wanted to trade Ryan Spooner AND a 2nd round pick to Buffalo for Chris Stewart? Ugh. Good riddance, Pete. But since we’re stuck with Spooner his goal and two assist performance tonight will have to do. He’s now tied with David Krejci on the team in points (33) and has 11 points in the last 8 games. We can stick him in every post game blog at this point because he’s earning it. Throw in the fact that this kid is only making $800,000 this year, and is on the books $1.1 million next year means it’s raining gold in Don Sweeney’s office right now. Did I mention his neck beard is great? Great night all around for the kid.
- Bruins picked up 5 points out of a possible 10 on the road trip. The two games they didn’t get points they had the lead in the 3rd period both times.
- Frank Vatrano’s struggles continue as he was held goalless again with a -1 rating and no shots on net in just 9 minutes of ice time. Granted, some of his lack of ice time is due to him not being on a special teams unit. Jimmy Hayes was also invisible tonight.
- I’m still glad the Bruins didn’t sign Cody Franson this summer.
- At one point in the second period the Sabres power play had the Bruins pinned in for a long stretch and both, yes BOTH, Bruins defensemen broke their sticks. Somehow the puck squeaked out of the zone and instead of letting the team regroup and attack the helpless defenders, Buffalo tried to re-enter quickly and went offside. That laugh out loud moment changed the game completely. Buffalo ended up 0-4 on the power play tonight.
- Kevan Miller logged 4:54 in short handed time in another good showing for him. Dennis Seidenberg also was on the kill for 5:14 of his 21 minutes of ice time.
- How much money do you think Matt Moulson has to direct deposit into John Tavares bank account as a thank you for his current deal? He was invisible tonight. He’s also on the books for $5 million per through 2019. Ouch. Buffalo has to be thinking buyout if they’re comfortable swallowing that coin.
Get some sleep and share this blog, Bruins friends. B’s are back at it quick tomorrow at the TD Garden against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Puck drops just after 7pm.