UNIONDALE, NY – Here are five thoughts from the first period with the Bruins and Islanders locked in a 1-1 tie after the first 20 minutes at the Nassau Coliseum.
1) Bruins were all over the Islanders early in this game, and might come to regret not being able to score more than one goal while unloading 18 shots on Kevin Poulin in the first period. He was fighting the puck early, but seemed to get comfortable as he was more rubber from the Bruins.
2) Nice-looking goal for Loui Eriksson, who has looked much more comfortable in his last couple of games. Daniel Paille got the puck to him by the goal line, and Eriksson quickly elevated a shot over the shoulders of Kevin Poulin for his first goal in his seventh game back from concussion. That ability to elevate shots top shelf in tight is one of the biggest skills Eriksson brings to the table.
3) Textbook pest work by Cal Clutterbuck at the end of the first period as he shoved Zdeno Chara to the ice well behind the play, an act that went without a call from the refs. An incensed Chara went back at Clutterbuck and gave him a retaliation jab that did get called by the refs. Chara running really hot afterward as Clutterbuck was first Isles player to bolt down the runway for intermission.
4) Andrew MacDonald with a solid 7:02 in the first period, blocking a shot and looking good while quarterbacking the Isles power play from the right point spot. He would be the perfect trade target for the B’s should contract talks go sour with the Islanders.
5) Not much to blame Chad Johnson about on the goal. Nice pass redirect into a shot by Frans Nielsen off a dish from Kyle Okposo, and then he was able to roof the rebound when it came right back to him. Good first period from Johnson after not seeing much action early.
UNIONDALE, NY – Here are five thoughts from the second period with the Bruins leading the Islanders by 4-3 score after the first 40 minutes at the Nassau Coliseum.
1) Not a lot of defense being played tonight. The Bruins and Islanders have combined for seven goals and 56 shots on net through two periods, and both teams are having a hard time keeping Grade A scoring chances away from the net.
2) Reilly Smith and Brad Marchand now going back and forth for the team lead in goals. Marchand pulled ahead briefly, but Reilly Smith added his 17th of the season to pull back into a tie with the Nose Face Killah. Reminds me of when Tyler Seguin and Marchand would keep going back-and-forth for the goal-scoring bragging rights while playing on the same line.
3) Beautiful goal by the Big Swede. Carl Soderberg took a pass from Milan Lucic in stride, used his speed and power to go right around Thomas Hickey at the end of a long shift for the Islanders D-man. Since the rush came off his weak-side right wing, he was able to pull back to his fore-hand to beat Kevin Poulin.
4) Two straight periods now that the Bruins have been called for penalties right at the end of the period: Zdeno Chara in the first for retaliating against Cal Clutterbuck, and Patrice Bergeron for a trip at the end of the second. Neither player was very happy about the call.
5) Torey Krug is a plus-3 and has been pretty good in the D-zone as compared to some of his fellow defenseman. Dougie Hamilton having a tough night when he couldn’t glove a puck that turned into a two-on-zero breakaway, and then followed with a hooking call on the next shift.