(BostonPucks.com) – “It wouldn’t shock me one bit if the B’s came out flying tonight against the St. Louis Blues either.” – Me, from my blog earlier today
Stop the press. Come down from the ledge. Put away the well liquor. The Bruins came play tonight. Yes, they actually came to play.
Despite a few too many trips to the penalty box the boys in black n’ gold were sharp, made good decisions, and executed in all areas tonight. There was no doubt about their effort from the opening drop of the puck.
David Backes was making his first return to St. Louis since leaving the franchise where he spent the previous ten seasons. And after a lucky bounce on a Brandon Carlo first period goal extended the B’s lead you had a feeling Backes and the Bruins would get some more love throughout the game. The red hot Brad Marchand led the way with three points (2 goals, 1 assist) and Tuukka Rask only had to face 17 shots. Boston has now taken 5 of a possible 6 points so far on this 4-game road trip.
The highlights of the night came in the form of BB’s the Bruins were blowing by the St. Louis Blues tenders. They were pure gems. Just take a look below.
First, Frank Vatrano took advantage of the week and a half he had to get of his snapper and abused Jake Allen glove side:
Then it was Brad Marchand‘s turn to do the same with his patented short side beam, while tagging the water bottle in the process:
And after Allen was replaced by backup tendy Carter Hutton, Torey Krug did his best Marchand impression, high glove:
It was refreshing to see. Shots were crisp, confident, and obviously well aimed all night. Much like losing is contagious, scoring can be as well.
Here’s some of my extra game notes for ya:
- Patrice Bergeron‘s play to get the puck in the neutral zone and set up the entire sequence that led to Brad Marchand’s goal was a thing of beauty. We’ve seen him do it a million times but when he strips a player of the puck, wins a battle, or picks off passes, it’s always impressive to watch. Its right up there with watching the girls on trampoline’s from “The Man Show”. Classic.
- The Bruins power play scored twice tonight. It was the first time since that happened since early November. Let that one sink in. It’s amazing how well a night can go when you execute with those opportunities.
- David Backes coming to the defense of David Krejci getting flattened in the second period was standard Backes stuff. Always awesome to see. If that were Loui Eriksson he’d have headed straight to the bench and acted like he didn’t see anything.
- That being said, eliminating fighting remains on the NHL agenda. Giving Backes a 2-5-10 fighting penalty in that situation is absolute garbage. And you know it’s coming down from the suits in the NHL offices and not something the officials really want to call. The all out crusade to suddenly stop fighting, even though it’s still allowed, is becoming a huge problem in every game league wide.
- Adam McQuaid left the game early with an injury. Colin Miller left for a bit with what appeared to be a tweaked knee in the third. And Kevan Miller went to the box shortly after Colin Miller left. That meant the B’s tried to kill a mid-third period power play with only three defensemen at their disposal. Not fun. It led to a Blues goal and the B’s eventually got Colin Miller back to finish the game with five D. But for awhile there with all the Bruins dropping like flies I thought maybe half of Providence was going to be called up before the night was over.
- Zdeno Chara logged an impressive 28:31 of ice time which includes an absurd 7:46 of ice time on the penalty kill. Somewhere in the Czech Republic there’s a fountain of youth and the man has access to it. Pretty impressive numbers even for Big Z.
- David Pastrnak quietly picked up 3 assists tonight. I don’t know how you do that quietly but he did.
- The St. Louis Blues did a fantastic tribute video to their former captain David Backes. I was hoping for a little “Missing You” by John Waite as the backing track but it wasn’t meant to be. Regardless, it’s a must watch in case you missed it:
The Bruins finish up their road trip Thursday night in Nashville. Currently the under achieving Predators sit one point outside of the final wild card playoff spot in the Western Conference. 8pm EST puck drop so don’t be late.