If Thursday night's game between the Boston Bruins and Columbus Blue Jackets was the board game Clue, referee Dean Morton would not have been a winner tonight. He got the room right (TD Garden: check), but he had the wrong suspect (Milan Lucic: X), and the wrong weapon (Lucic's stick: X). Morton whistled Lucic for a 4-minute double minor for high sticking late in the third period. The replay showed that it was not Lucic's stick that made contact with Derik Brassard's face. It turns out that Anton Stralman was the player carrying the stick that struck Brassard. Columbus took full advantage of the blown call as R.J. Umberger went on to score the game-winner on the ensuing power play as the Blue Jackets edged the Bruins 3-2 in heart-breaking fashion.
Michael Ryder staked the Bruins to an early 1-0 lead 2:11 into the game. Trent Whitfield skated in on the left wing and dished the puck to Michael Ryder, who roofed a hard wrister over the shoulder of Steve Mason on the blocker side.
Chris Clark knotted things up for the Blue Jackets when Raffi Torres threaded a pass from the right wing wall to Clark at the left circle, where Clark hammered home a one-timer. The goal was the Connecticut native's 6th goal of the season.
Before tonight's game, Milan Lucic said that he needed to play with more emotion and "play more ticked off". He showed that emotion when the dropped the gloves with Columbus tough guy Jared Boll late in the first period. The lengthy bout ended in a draw with both men still on their skates.
Patrice Bergeron regained the lead for the Bruins at 6:40 of the second period. Zdeno Chara was tied up along the left wing boards in the neutral zone and left a little touch pass into space for Bergeron, who was skating on to the puck. Bergeron pick up the puck and fired a shot from the high slot that beat Steve Mason for Bergy's 12th goal of the '09-'10 campaign.
The Blue Jackets appeared to have tied it up at 2 on a power play goal by Antoine Vermette. After review, the goal was taken off the board after it was determined that Vermette made a distant kicking motion to direct the puck in with his skate.
Antoine Vermette got one that counted 7:16 into the third period, when he put home a loose puck in front of the net that Tuukka Rask and Matt Hunwick could not take care off after Kris Russell directed the puck toward goal from the left wing boards.
Columbus took advantage of a what appeared to be the bad call late in the third period when Milan Lucic was sent off for a 4-minute double minor for high-sticking at 18:29. The replay showed that is was actually the stick of Anton Stralman that struck his teammate Derik Brassard, not Lucic. R.J. Umberger scored the game winner just 15 seconds later.
- That this a horrible way to lose a game.
- I thought the Bruins showed good energy and intensity most of the game. They deserved a better result tonight.
- The Bruins out-shot the Blue Jackets 34-25
- I looks like the local audience is getting tired of The Dennis Wideman Show. Wideman was booed by the crowd at TD Garden several times during the game.
- In reality, it should have never come down to that call. The Bruins had several opportunities to score and put that game away.
- I don't even want to think about this game for any longer. The Bruins are back in action on Saturday afternoon when they will play the Ottawa Senators (...again) at TD Garden.