Bruins continue to roll after shootout win over Devils

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Bruins continue to roll after shootout win over Devils

BOSTON -- It took six rounds but the Bruins picked up a 2-1 shootout win over the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday night at the TD Garden, thanks to Brad Marchand's sixth-round shot that trickled through Johan Hedberg's five-hole and into the net.

Tuukka Rask followed it up by making a glove save on Marek Zidlicky, sealing the deal on Boston's fifth win of the season.

The Bruins nearly lost in regulation, but Nathan Horton tied the game at 1-1 with 4:05 remaining in the third period, as Milan Lucic and David Krejci set him up in the right circle after a clean transition into the Devils' zone.

Horton let a low wrister go and it beat Hedberg for his third goal of the season, sending the game into overtime, and eventually into a shootout.

The Devils scored the first goal of the game, taking a 1-0 lead midway through the second period, when David Clarkson got a piece of a Zidlicky shot from the left point with 53 seconds remaining on a New Jersey power play. It marked the first power-play goal the Bruins had allowed all season.

GOLD STAR: Nathan Horton had the only two shots for his forward line and potted the big game-tying goal with less than five minutes to go in regulation. It pushed Hortons point streak to four games and gives him a pair of timely third period goals on the young season among his five points scored this year. Watching Horton skate with confidence in the offensive zone and attack the net while potting timely goals, its as if neither of the concussions actually happened and thats a very good thing for No. 18. The Bruins saw up close and personal during the regular season and the playoffs last year how much they miss his ability to score in the clutch.

BLACK EYE: Whoever the clown was that threw the Unidentified Food Object (UFO) that looked like a hot dog on the ice just as Tyler Seguin was firing his shootout attempt is a Grade A clown. The food item flashed right by Devils goaltender Johan Hedberg just as he was readying to make the save on Seguin, and the Bruins forward actually scored on the play. It didnt appear that the UFO was a distraction of any kind, but the referees forced Seguin and the Bruins to re-do the shootout attempt. It was all according to the NHL rulebooks and Seguin scored again on the second try, but theres no room at the TD Garden for fans that fire items on the ice during play. Thats bush league.

TURNING POINT: Once again the Bruins came out in the third period and decided they wouldnt be taking no for an answer while outshooting the Devils in what Claude Julien called a heavy game for both sides. Part of the uptick in momentum and intensity was their ability to stay out of the penalty box after a host of penalties on both sides really chopped up the second period, and part of it was Bostons determination to at least earn themselves a point by getting to overtime. That led to Nathan Hortons goal with nearly four minutes to go in the third period and an eventual two-point win in the shootout.

HONORABLE MENTION: Brad Marchand managed only a single shot on net in 19 plus minutes of ice time while racking up a couple of hits and a couple of blocked shots. But he riled up David Clarkson enough that the Devils power forward starting making nose gestures at Marchand during a heated chat in overtime, and then Nose Face Killah really delivered in overtime. He finally broke open a shootout that had gone back-and-forth and then chirped a little something to Clarkson and the rest of the New Jersey bench after rifling home the game-winner.

BY THE NUMBERS: 42 the number of years since the Bruins have found themselves off to a 5-0-1 start as they have this season in their first six games. Whenever youre talking about the 1970-71 Bobby Orr Era Bruins, youre talking about true franchise greatness.

QUOTE TO NOTE: We knew all along we could come back. Weve done it a lot before in the past. Its reassuring to know that we can come back at any time. When we roll four lines here, we stay fresh, and you keep battling away eventually youre gonna win. Nathan Horton on the Bs belief that theyll win when things are close in the closing minutes of their games.

Game story provided by Danny Picard.

Friday, Dec. 9: John Scott calls it quits

Friday, Dec. 9: John Scott calls it quits

Here are all the links from around the hockey world and what I’m reading while digging the Spider-Man trailer that dropped last night. 

*John Scott has finally called it a day and announced his retirement, and apparently there’s a book of his memoirs also coming out too. I’m predicting it’s not headed for the New York Times best seller list. 

*Winter Olympics participation and the CBA negotiations for the NHL are starting to merge into giant issue.  

*Connor McDavid calls the Flyers' Brandon Manning classless for telling him on the ice that he purposefully tried to hurt him last season. Some players might also take issue with McDavid making public what another player said to him on the ice. That’s kind of a no-no for most hockey players and breaks an unwritten rule that McDavid might think he’s above given his star status. This whole thing isn’t a good look for anybody. 

*Kevin Stevens pleads guilty to federal drug charges in what’s become a pretty sad situation for the former NHL star. 

*New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist is beginning to raise questions with his play, and his massive price tag. 

*Youngsters Zach Weresnki and Dylan Larkin took similar paths to the NHL, and are both considered part of the talented young generation full of hockey stars. 

*PHT writer Joey Alfieri has Carey Price taking a nutty on Kyle Palmieri after the player crashed into his crease last night. Price is being celebrated for sticking up for himself, but if another goalie did that to a Habs player at the Bell Centre, there would already be a warrant out for his arrest. Play it both ways, Montreal!  

*For something completely different: here’s the aforementioned new Spider-Man: Homecoming trailer that looks pretty darn good. 

 

Two more Pastrnak goals pull him into tie for NHL lead with Crosby

Two more Pastrnak goals pull him into tie for NHL lead with Crosby

BOSTON – While the loss to the Avalanche on Thursday night was a monumental dud, it put another dazzling display on the hockey resume of David Pastrnak. 

The 20-year-old star right winger scored two more goals in the 4-2 loss at TD Garden and nearly brought the Bruins back into the game by himself before another defensive breakdown at the end of the second period doomed them. 

Instead, Pastrnak had to settle with being the proud owner of 18 goals scored in 23 games that places him in a tie with NHL superstar Sidney Crosby for the NHL lead in goals. 

The goals also showed his wide range of lethal offensive skills. On the first score, he just broke away from the Avalanche defense and managed to bury a second-effort breakaway chance after a nice Tim Schaller stretch pass off the boards. The second goal was a straight one-timer bomb from the high slot off a slick setup pass from Brad Marchand in the corner, and it had the Bruins right back into the mix after a dreadful first period. 

It wasn’t enough when the B’s defense faltered again toward the end of the second period, but it was enough for everybody to be singing Pastrnak’s praises once again following the loss. 

“He’s a game changer. The momentum is going the other way, and he has the ability to break away on any given shift and score a big goal for us. He did that tonight,” said Torey Krug. “We can’t just keep relying on the same guys to score goals. We’ve got to come up with secondary offense, and I know every other guy wants to do that. 

“Now it’s about showing that on the ice and making sure we’re doing the work and getting better and proving to ourselves. But Pasta [David Pastrnak] has been great for us so far, and we’re obviously lucky to have him.”

The 18 goals barely two months into the season are not too shabby for a kid, in his third NHL season, who just now coming into his own. He’s nearly halfway to 40 before Christmas. For Pastrnak, however, it’s about the team result and he wasn’t overly satisfied with his two goals in a losing effort. 

“I’ve said before the season that our goal is to make the playoffs and to have that experience and have the chance to win the Stanley Cup. I’m still focusing on that,” said Pastrnak, who has yet to experience the Stanley Cup playoffs in his two-plus seasons with the Black and Gold. “We have zero points from tonight’s game and we have to move on. I think our game gets better in the second and third periods, you know, and we have to regroup and get ready for Saturday’s game.”

The Bruins will undoubtedly regroup and once again count on another Pastrnak offensive explosion to help lead the way in what’s become a truly spectacular season for the youngster.