Bruins drop penalty-filled game to Habs, 2-1


Bruins drop penalty-filled game to Habs, 2-1

By Joe Haggerty

MONTREAL Before the Bruins-Canadiens series got going, it was universally agreed that a special-teams fiesta would heavily favor the Habs.
Well, the Canadiens got their fiesta in Game 6 and predictably pulled out a 2-1victory at the Bell Centre Tuesday night, setting the stage for Game 7 Wednesday night in Boston.The two teams combined for 11 power plays with the Habs succeeding on two of them. The Bruins, on the other hand, went 0-for-4, leaving them at a pitiful 0-for-19 for the series.The Canadiens came out on fire early in the game, and actually appeared to have a goal in the opening minutes when Brian Gionta collected a loose puck beside Tim Thomas and flipped it into the net. But referee Kevin Pollock lost sight of the puck and, despite it being loose and out in the open, whistled the play dead, nullifying the goal.The Bruins were then hit with a pair of penalties after that blown call. They received a too-many-men-on-the-ice penalty when Adam McQuaid, coming off the ice, couldn't get to the bench before the puck hit his skate, and Dennis Seidenbergfollowed with a slash on the ensuing faceoff that snapped the stick ofMike Cammalleri. Montreals high-powered special teams took over and P.K. Subban fed Cammalleri for a sizzling one-timer during the 5-on-3 advantage that gave the Habs a 1-0 lead.The Bs tied it in the opening minutes of the second period. Seidenberg and Chris Kelly fought for possession behind the Montreal net, and Seidenberg escaped with the puck and scored on a wrap-around attempt that flipped through Carey Price.Milan Lucic hit Jaroslav Spacek and was given a major for boarding and a game misconduct less than five minutes into the period. A Cammalleri shot on another Montreal 5-on-3 led to a Gionta rebound score that gave the Canadiens a 2-1 advantage, and they held the lead the rest of the way.
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Nash scores a pair of goals in Bruins 2-1 win over Islanders


Nash scores a pair of goals in Bruins 2-1 win over Islanders

BROOKLYN, NY – The Bruins knew they needed to find stellar performances somewhere in order to come out of a must-win game vs. the Islanders with two points, and they got exactly that.

Riley Nash had his best game as a member of the Bruins with a pair of goals scored in a 2-1 win over the Islanders at the Barclays Center that snapped a four game losing streak, and pushed them back into the wild card playoff spot.

It wasn’t a perfect game for the Black and Gold by any means and it was nip-and-tuck all the way, but it was important for the Bruins to show they could pull out those kinds of games late in the season.

Things didn’t look all that great early when John Tavares cut through the Bruins defense in the first period, and whistled a wrist shot from the high slot that went through Adam McQuaid’s legs before beating Anton Khudobin. The Bruins responded, however, on the very next shift with Nash stealing the puck from Scott Mayfield in the neutral zone, and beating Thomas Greiss short side for the important game-tying goal.

It looked like the Bruins had their go-ahead score in the first period on a second-effort power play goal by Frank Vatrano, but that was wiped out by a coach’s challenge that ruled David Backes interfered with Greiss in front of the New York net.

So the Bruins needed to wait until the third period when Boston’s fourth line stepped up and won the massively important game for Boston. Dominic Moore fed Riley Nash hustling into the offensive zone, and he weaved through the Islanders defense before snapping a shot past Greiss for his second goal of the game and his seventh on the season for the Bruins. 

Bruins know they 'have to go all in' vs. Islanders to control playoff fate


Bruins know they 'have to go all in' vs. Islanders to control playoff fate

BROOKLYN, NY – The Bruins woke up on Saturday morning and found themselves out of the playoff picture for the first time in months by virtue of the one game in hand the New York Islanders have over the Black and Gold.

That makes Saturday night’s tilt against the Isles at the Barclays Center all the more important. A win will put the Bruins back into the lead for the second wild card spot in the Eastern Conference, and a loss would further drop them out of the playoff picture. It’s the biggest game of the season for the Bruins made that much grander in scale because Tuukka Rask is suddenly out with a lower body injury, and the Bruins will need a superior effort to snap a four game losing streak that has them teetering on the brink of playoff oblivion.

With all this swirling around, the Bruins know they can seize control of their playoff destiny with a win that will send them spinning off in the right direction. A loss will…well, that’s something the B’s don’t even want to entertain at this point after collapsing down the stretch in each of the last two seasons.

“With where we’re at right now, we can’t have any moral victories. Now it’s about doing the job and bearing down. We have to go all in tonight and have a big game. Hopefully the guys understand how important of a game it is and we have a big night,” said Brad Marchand. “I think we’re all excited. This is when we love to play when the game means so much, and it has a playoff feel. We’re fighting for our lives right now. It’s a great mood in the room, so hopefully we have a big bounce back.”

While the big picture can’t possibly be ignored given what’s happened with the Bruins this week, Bruce Cassidy also cautioned that simply viewing Saturday night as a two-point game was the best technique for success. Otherwise things could become overwhelming and packed with too much pressure when it should be something the Bruins are embracing rather than dreading.

“I hope our guys are creating some positive energy out there. This time of year you just need to have that mindset that it’s one game at a time,” said Cassidy. “You don’t look back, and you stay in the moment. That’s the message that gets conveyed to the group and for the most part they’ve done a good job with that. We just need to play our game and play it well.

“I truly believe they’ll bounce back. They didn’t have their best on Thursday and I think we’ve addressed that game. I believe they’ll take a lot of pride in their game tonight. Your leaders need to lead and your followers need to follow, and that’s a recipe for success for most teams. We’re no different and I expect that to be the case [against the Islanders].”

On the other side of the coin, it will be look out below if the Bruins drop a fifth straight game and continue a downward spiral as the Leafs, Lightning and Islanders are seem to be hitting their late season stride at the same time.