Here are five thoughts from the first period with the Bruins and New York Rangers locked in a scoreless tie after the first 20 minutes of action at Madison Square Garden.
1) Dennis Seidenberg leaves the ice after just one shift and 1:01 of ice time, and won’t return due to injury. Adam McQuaid is already down and out with a lower body injury. The depth test for the Bruins will start now. Some good candidates down in Providence with Zach Trotman, Tommy Cross, David Warsofsky and Kevan Miller all ready, willing and able to help out if needed.
2) Full credit to Gregory Campbell for dropping the gloves with Derek Dorsett after the two tangled during the second round of the playoffs last year. Campbell absorbed some solid connections from Dorsett before heading to the penalty box, but it was a good message in what was a sleepy first period for the Black and Gold.
3) Bruins outshot 16-6 in that first period, and it seemed that one-sided with almost no sustained offensive pressure from the Black and Gold.
4) On the flip side, outstanding first period from Tuukka Rask as he stoned Chris Kreider on a penalty shot and then shut down scoring chances for Carl Hagelin and Rick Nash later on in that period. Rask looks sharp tonight, but the Bruins will need to pull things together as he can’t keep rescuing a depleted D-men corps.
5) Patrice Bergeron won 8-of-9 face-offs and had two of Boston’s six shots in the first period. He was one of the few players that showed up for the Black and Gold in this second night of back-to-back situation on the road.
Here are five thoughts from the second period with the Bruins leading the New York Rangers by a 2-1 score after the first 40 minutes of action at Madison Square Garden.
1) I don’t think Shawn Thornton will be serving as a healthy scratch anytime soon. Thornton pushed the puck up the right wing on a breakout, kept it into the right face-off circle and then went top shelf against Henrik Lundqvist for Boston’s only goal. Don’t look now, but Thornton’s last two goals have been against the last two Vezina Trophy winners in Lundqvist and Sergei Bobrovsky.
2) Daniel Paille adds his two cents as well by making a nice play stealing a shorthanded puck between the points, passing it to himself off the boards and then finishing things off with a five hole score between Henrik Lundqvist’s pads for the goal. The B’s fourth line is once again tormenting the Rangers just as they did last season during the second round of the playoffs.
3) Rangers outshooting the Bruins 33-13 through the first period two periods, and are really dominating in all aspects aside from the scoreboard. Clearly the Bruins have been opportunistic jumping on some mistakes by the Blueshirts, but Tuukka Rask is the only thing standing between a lopsided score on the board in favor of New York. The fast pace of the action and the fact Boston is playing the second night of a back-to-back don’t bode well for the final 20 minutes.
4) Matt Bartkowski looked like he was shaken up after getting tossed into the boards with his left knee slamming awkwardly. He limped off the ice and missed a few shifts before finishing off the period. We’ll have to wait and see if he’s healthy enough for the third period, but the Bruins will be hard pressed to hold on if they’ve only got four defensemen.
5) Brutal offensive finish for the Rangers to go hand-in-hand with Tuukka Rask playing so well.
6) Bruins penalty kill perfection is over after Derrick Brassard rifled a puck past Tuukka Rask, and ended Boston’s stretch at 33 straight penalties killed by the Black and Gold.
Here are five thoughts from the third period with the Bruins taking down the New York Rangers by a 2-1 score after the 60 minutes of action at Madison Square Garden.
1) Forty three saves for Tuukka Rask in a gigantic performance behind a gasping, wheezing Bruins group. Shut down Chris Kreider on a penalty shot in the first and then again on a breakaway in the third period, and was the beneficiary of a couple of posts as well as the Bruins were stormed big time by the Blueshirts.
2) The B’s fourth line was the only one that showed up in the second and third period as nobody else was consistently bringing anything to their shifts. Forwards inability to get pucks deep and maintain offensive possession was an issue throughout the game.
3) A season-high 31:27 for Zdeno Chara with Dennis Seidenberg out of the lineup. The Bruins hoped to rest him more this season, but it’s not happening now that the B’s have delved into the bulk portion of their season. Nobody else along the blue line was over 25 minutes of ice time in the game with Seidenberg clocking just 1:01 of ice time.
4) Brad Richards with 11 shot attempts generated and won 10-of-15 face-offs in a notable effort for the New York Rangers after he was a fourth line/healthy scratch during the playoffs last year.
5) No shots on net for Brad Marchand and a bad cross-checking penalty to the back of Mats Zuccarello to start the third period. He did have a nice net drive in the second period to open things up for Shawn Thornton’s goal, but there may be a healthy scratch coming for a player that’s just not consistently putting it out there like he’s done in the past.