Talking Points: Marchand continues hot stretch with two goals
Brad Marchand scored a couple more goals as he rides through a hot offensive stretch, put up three points altogether along with a plus-2 rating and finished with five shots on net in 22:08 of ice time. Marchand was part of the three goal assault in the first period when he launched a wrist shot past Jake Allen that eventually chased the Blues starting goalie out of the game. He then got the empty netter in the third period that iced the game for the Bruins when the Blues were trying to mount an ill-fated, last-ditch comeback. Marchand now has five goals and seven points in his last four games, and is piling up the points as he’s wont to do once he starts feeling it offensively like he was at the beginning of the year. The B’s are a different team when Marchand is really cranking offensively, and that’s what he’s doing right now.
It sure looked like a lot of Blues players weren’t into tonight’s game against their former captain. Kevin Shattenkirk, Alex Pietrangelo and Vladimir Tarasenko all looked particularly disinterested in the game. But nobody was worse than Jake Allen, who was pulled after allowing three goals on 11 shots in the first period. It was a bit of a shooting range with the Bruins out-shooting the Blues by an 11-2 margin in the first 20 minutes, but it was also Allen getting cleanly beaten on wrist shots from Frank Vatrano and Brad Marchand. The real capper was the Brandon Carlo point blast off the end boards that bounced into the crease, and then saw Allen kick the puck into the net as he backed into his crease looking for the puck. It was not a good night to be a goalie in a St. Louis uniform.
The Bruins have been slammed for their less-than-impressive starts lately, and with good reason given the way they’ve come out for some games. But it was clear the Bruins meant business on Tuesday night in St. Louis, and they came out prepared to play, score early and often and completely dominate a good opponent in the Blues. They outshot St. Louis by an 11-2 margin, and dropped three goals on the Blues to give themselves a rare three-goal lead entering the first intermission. Sure the Bruins scored more afterward and the Blues mounted a mini-rally in the third period, but this game was over after the opening 20 minutes thanks to a strong start from the Black and Gold.
Brandon Carlo has struggled a bit lately with his play as a 20-year-old slogging through the heavy portion of the NHL schedule. But the B’s rookie D-man had a great effort on Tuesday night stepping up with Adam McQuaid and Colin Miller both going down with injuries, and recovering from a pair of first period penalties that could have set a bad tone for his game if he’d allowed it. Instead he fought back and scored a first period goal on a wild carom off the end boards, and then played a strong 19:57 of ice time with a plus-2 rating while getting things done in the D-zone. The two shots on net, two hits and three blocked shots showed plenty of grittiness, and the overall effort showed Carlo might be getting back on track.
BY THE NUMBERS
2 – the number of power play goals scored by the Bruins in the win over St. Louis, which marks their first multi-power play goal game since a Nov. 7 win over the Buffalo Sabres.
QUOTE TO NOTE
"We seem to rise to the challenge when we play the really tough teams in the league. The main thing is that we need to bring that every night. We know we have a good team and we believe in here.” – Brad Marchand, who had two goals vs. the Blues and now has five goals in his last three games.