Talking Points: Bruins 3, Blackhawks 0

Talking Points: Bruins 3, Blackhawks 0
March 27, 2014, 10:45 pm
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GOLD STAR: Patrice Bergeron finished with two goals, six shot attempts, one hit, two takeaways and won 15-of-21 face-offs in a pretty dominant showdown with fellow Selke Trophy candidate Jonathan Toews. Bergeron was all over the ice, winning battles, creating offensive chances and showing exactly what the Bruins were missing when he was severely diminished by injuries in the last couple of games of the Stanley Cup Final last June. PHWA voters should take a look at this game tape prior to making their vote for Selke this season and No. 37 would have the upper hand in a serious way.

BLACK EYE: Kris Versteeg normally enjoys some pretty good games against his former team, and has always enjoying going head-to-head with former Providence Bruins linemate David Krejci. But Versteeg was a no show as a supporting player for the Blackhawks on Thursday night, and finished with zero shots on net in 13:36 of ice time to go along with a minus-1 rating. Versteeg was among several Chicago players that were effectively bottled up by the Bruins defense, and perhaps made somebody feel better about the B’s trading him to Chicago for Brandon Bochenski back in the early days of the Peter Chiarelli era in Boston. Definitely not everybody, but maybe one or two people.

TURNING POINT: After a first period that saw Chicago attack with speed and skill while utilizing some stretch passes to try and get behind the Boston defense, the B’s defenders put the clamps down on the Blackhawks. They outshot the Bruins 20-13 in the final two periods, but Boston had all of the scoring chances while finishing things off with two goals in 13 seconds in the third period. It didn’t have the dramatic impact of the Blackhawks two goals in 17 seconds during Game 6 of the Cup Final last year, but it still packed a healthy regular-season wallop.

HONORABLE MENTION: Tuukka Rask wasn’t pushed much by a lineup without Patrick Kane and Bryan Bickell, but he still did managed to make 28 saves to secure his NHL-leading seventh shutout of the season. Most of the shots came from the perimeter in the final 40-50 minutes of the game, but Rask was ready for the heavy attack in the first 10 minutes of the game before the B’s defense began clogging things up. Rask is clearly in a different class of goaltender than Corey Crawford, who allowed two goals on seven shots in an utterly unimpressive third period.

BY THE NUMBERS: 25 – the number of goals for Patrice Bergeron this season, his second 25-goal campaign of his career and the first since he scored 31 in the 2005-06 season.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "We're in the right position right now as far as where our game is at for this time of year. But satisfied is a word that doesn't exist in our dressing room.” –Claude Julien, who wants the Bruins to continue finishing strong in the regular season's final nine games.