Bruins Rock Them Like A Hurricane 5-3
Boston Bruins 5 - Carolina Hurricanes 3
If you read my preview today you knew I was rather pessimistic going into tonight's game, it didn't help when two minutes into the game Anton Khudobin got a penalty for sending the puck over the glass. Lucky for the Bruins they play better on the penalty kill and Brad Marchand showed the Hurricanes that last year's four losses were a thing of the past with a short-handed goal. Patrice Bergeron sent the puck out to Zdeno Chara who set up the Honey Badger to draw first blood in what would be a roller coaster of a game.
About three minutes later Big Z's wrister utilized Milan Lucic's screen to put the Black and Gold up 2-0 and finally giving them their first power play goal. The B's were smart to draw an interference penalty from Patrick Dwyer, they put their 1-3-1 into action with David Krejci and Tyler Seguin each getting the assist on the Captain's tally. In an effort to revive his team, Tim Gleason went at it with Lucic in what looked more like sweater wrestling than real NHL fight, both received fighting majors. Losing Gleason was certainly worth it and gave the Canes a much needed boost, with Jamie McBain scoring his first of the year and shortening the lead to one.
During an intermission interview, Marchand commented that the Bruins were looking for revenge for last season's embarrassing performance against the Canes. Nathan Horton beat Cam Ward going top shelf on yet another Chara assist, the big guy had one goal and two assists tonight and earned first star of the game. The Bruins once again held a two point lead...just to lose it, again, to Jeff Skinner as he beat the Merlot line and buried a wrister past Khudobin, that's who-doe-bin KPD! A Chris Kelly mistake lead to a turnover and Alexander Semin connected with Staal for a quick shot and to tie the game.
Despite blowing two, two point leads, the Bruins did have six successful penalty kills and remain perfect on their PK 23-23 so for this season, this is the longest streak of successful PKs since 2001-02. Dougie Hamilton showed wisdom beyond his years by choosing to pass to Krejci late in the third, who nailed the game winning goal with less than two minutes left in regulation. Prior to the game today, GM Peter Chiarelli announced that Hamilton will not be returning to Juniors and will remain with the big boys for the remainder of the season. A late slashing call on Staal gave Tyler Seguin the chance to score on the power play and an empty net, with ease. Just as Seguin tapped it in the net, Skinner lost his cool and was able to rattle the usually calm and cool Patrice Bergeron.
So at the end of the night, I loved being wrong!
Oh and grattis to Coach Claude Julien for passing Grapes for most wins as a Bruins coach, now placing him solely in the number three spot, behind Milt Schmidt and Art Ross.
Get some rest, we do it all again tomorrow when the reigning Eastern Conference champs, the New Jersey Devils, come to town.