WASHINGTON DC Here are five thoughts from the first period with the Bruins trailing the Washington Capitals by a 1-0 score after the first 20 minutes of play at the Verizon Center.
1)Once again the Bruins are settling for outside perimeter shots or firing off the first available chance rather than waiting things out and creating plays. Tyler Seguin had a chance to step in and make a move on Braden Holtby earlier in the period, but instead opted for the wrister from the circle. Likewise Milan Lucic had Rich Peverley on a 2-on-1 odd-man rush and floated an easy wrist shot at Holtby rather than making a play. Not a lot of offensive confidence for the Bruins right now.
2) Claude Julien switching things around with the lines: he put David Krejci together with Brad Marchand and Tyler Seguin, and had Patrice Bergeron skating with Milan Lucic and Rich Peverley as the Bs look for a winning combination. Didnt appear to work and I dont love Marchand and Bergeron getting split up. Those two have all kinds of chemistry.
3)Bruins also still playing something between croquet and tiddly winks in the first period. Its been nice, polite, cordial hockey that anybody watching the PanthersDevils series probably recognizes. Nicklas Backstrom got into Milan Lucics kitchen and cross-checked him high at the end of the first period, so perhaps that will stir No. 17 into something closer to nastiness. Lucic hasnt been a presence in this series at all.
4)Capitals only blocked five shots that period, but once again they were able to keep the Bruins well to the perimeter when shooting the puck.
5)One thing Braden Holtby should have been called on: throwing his stick at a puck as Daniel Paille was moving in on a long rebound during a scrambling moment in the first period. It should have been a penalty shot as it appeared Holtby purposely threw his stick out at the puck. Instead there was no call.
WASHINGTON DC Here are five thoughts from the second period with the Bruins and Capitals tied at a 2-2 score after the first 40 minutes of play at the Verizon Center.
1) Finally some offense from the Bruins. Rich Peverley sneaks a wrist shot past Brad Holtby that glances off his glove and Daniel Paille gets to a rebound while camped out in front of the net. Perfect example of how the Bruins need to do their damage: move the puck quickly to get a clean shot for the defenseman, and then get a forward with courage to stand in front of the net. Paille was rewarded with his first goal of the playoffs and the score is tied.
2)Milan Lucic finally getting aggravated. Causes a scrum with Nicklas Backstrom at the end of the first period and then throws Brooks Laich down before a face-off in the second period. Hes making himself a presence without putting his team in the bad spot short-handed. Exactly the way it should be done for a player that sets the emotional tone for his teammates.
3)The Bruins have as many blocked shots as the Capitals tonight (12) that, friends, is progress for Boston and regression for Washington.
4)Have to think Johnny Boychuk is banged up given the way that hes playing out there. Looks labored with his skating and his decision-making is questionable at best, but that all goes back to skating and moving the puck with confidence. Not doing any of these things and perhaps thats because the knee isnt quite right. Im sure well never know until the playoffs are over.
5)No shots on net and no factor from Brad Marchand right now in 11:22 of ice time. Hasnt been a presence at all.