GOLD STAR: Johnny Boychuk took a tied game in the third period and inserted himself into the proceedings with his two biggest assets. He thumped Thomas Vanek on one shift when the Buffalo forward had his head down around the blue line and followed that up by smoking one of his patented Johnny Rocket slapshots through three Buffalo defenders and just under the crossbar. Boychuks goal ended up being the game-winner and put the punctuation mark on a solid 21:53 of ice time for the defenseman. Boychuk finished with four shots on net and four registered hits to go along with his fourth goal of the season.
BLACK EYE: One shot on net and a pair of giveaways for Brian Rolston led to his demotion to the third line along with the promotion of Jordan Caron to the Patrice Bergeron line alongside Brad Marchand. Rolston has been working his way into shape with the Bruins after failing to get a great deal of ice time in his last few weeks with the New York Islanders, and he still doesnt appear to be where he needs to be. Claude Julien admitted after the game they made the Caron-for-Rolston switch because they needed more offense alongside Bergeron and Marchand. Rolston has one point and a minus-2 in six games with the Bruins since the trade.
TURNING POINT: Johnny Boychuk stepping up and delivering one of his trademark body checks on Thomas Vanek snapped the TD Garden crowd awake and got the momentum spinning in Bostons direction during a tied hockey game in the third period. Minutes later, Boychuk ripped the game-winning slapshot and the Bruins were off and running while potting two goals on only six shots in the final 20 minutes.
HONORABLE MENTION: Gregory Campbell hadnt scored a point in 19 games, but dutifully played his fourth line role and continued to power ahead with a game of musical wingers on either side of him due to this seasons injuries. Campbell finally snapped out of the offensive spell with a second period goal and added four hits along with the single shot on net and 15:14 of ice time. The Bruins are a much better team when their fourth line is contributing and that was the case again tonight.
BY THE NUMBERS: 20 the number of points for the David KrejciMilan LucicTyler Seguin line in their first five games together. It looks like theyll be sticking together for quite a while.
QUOTE TO NOTE: Let me ask you a question: did I look tired in Game 7 last year? Tim Thomas when asked if theres credence in the theory that his high-energy style can cause him to wear down and suffer fatigue after long stretches of consecutive games.