Get the Duck Boats ready the Bruins beat the Chicago Blackhawks 4-2 at TD Garden tonight.  The Bruins played a full 60 minutes and they were rewarded with the win.  Boston got goals from Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand, Ryan Spooner and Loui Eriksson.  Certainly this was a good showing for the Bruins and a great win.

Here are BostonPucks.com’s 3 thoughts on the game:

1) It Was The Right Night To Play The Blackhawks

I don’t want to take anything away from the Bruins because they played a real smart game. Even on a bad night the Blackhawks are still better than 90% of the NHL but it didn’t hurt that the Bruins caught the Hawks on little rest.  They arrived at their hotel in Boston at 3am after beating Detroit hours before and it showed a bit tonight.  Scott Darling got the spot start and let in 4 goals on just 23 shots through the second period.  Credit goes to Boston though as the goals were still of the beauty variety and not garbage goals:


And…


AND…

You get my point.  It was definitely nice to see the Bruins play a complete game and make their opponent struggle to handle them.  Had they come out a flat a tired Hawks bunch is still talented enough to win that game.

2) Connolly is shooting more on the 4th line

Is it just me or does it seem like Brett Connolly is shooting more since he has been dropped to the 4th line?  Here at BostonPucks.com we have not hidden our fandom of Brett Connolly while others have been ripping him.  We have always thought we was playing well but pucks were not going in for him.  With that being said, he also was not shooting the puck much.

Connolly only registered 1 shot on goal tonight but he seems to be attempting more shots and being more aggressive when he has the puck.  Maybe he is shooting more because he has been dropped to the 4th line, or maybe playing on a line with Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand he was trying to get them the puck instead of looking to shoot.  

One of my complaints about Claude is he sometimes does not put players in a position to succeed (Pasta on the 4th line earlier with little to no PP time) and I think that is some of the case with Connolly.  I always thought he should have been on a line with David Krejci instead of Bergeron.  I think Krejci is the type of player that would get Connolly the puck in shooting areas where Bergeron and Marchand are more shoot first players.  So far though I like the look of this new 4th line.

3) New Guys Making An Impact

Well maybe general manager Don Sweeney knows something we don’t know.  Tonight newcomers Lee Stempniak and John Michael-Liles had a night.  And yes, I know it’s only the second game and I’m not saying we should all run out and get #20 and #26 jersey’s but there was a definitely an obvious change to the Bruins game with these guys in the lineup.  An experienced and smart style of hockey has been injected through the 32 and 35-year-old vets and it shows.  Stempniak made a couple brilliant one-touch passes, including a no-look feed that set up Marchand’s snipe, and really made great decisions everywhere on the ice.  John Michael-Liles had a very calm and patient play circling back into his own end that set up the entire rush prior to Bergeron’s opening goal.  Again, it was nice to see their smart hockey infecting the rest of this roster and eliminating a lot of the unforced errors.

Stempniak finished with 2 assists and a plus-2 while logging a little time on the PK.  JML was third in ice time for Bruins defenders with an assist and two blocked shots.

****Extras****

  • Per Bruins writer Mike Loftus, of Brad Marchand’s 33 goals this season, tonight’s goal was his 17th that gave the Bruins the lead.  That’s unreal.  No softies for that guy.  When he scores it means a lot.
  • I cracked up when in the final 2 minutes Adam McQuaid was fending off Toews and Kane in the corner and Jack Edwards says, “that’s $21 million worth of talent trying to get the puck from McQuaid.”  Pretty ridiculous when you think about how much #19 and #88 make playing hockey on the same team.
  • With tonight’s win Bruins Coach, Claude Julien tied Art Ross with the most wins in Bruins history.  Congrats coach!