Bruins fans should have been shocked that the B's blew a 3-game series lead and a 3-goal Game 7 lead, but they should not have been surprised at the way it ended. The too many men on the ice call late in the third period of Game 7 that led to Simon Gagne's game-winner was just the latest of several moments in the Bruins' '09-'10 season that were shaped by too men on the ice calls and non-calls.
I will take you back to New Year's Day at Fenway Park where Marco Sturm had just lifted the Bruins over the Flyers 2-1 with an overtime goal in the NHL Winter Classic. The smoke from the fireworks that erupted from atop the press box had barely cleared from the air before members of the Philly media were breaking down the tape and writing about how the B's should have been called for too many men on the ice moments earlier. Four and a half months later, these same scribes would write about how the call at the end of Game 7 was karma for the non-call at Fenway.
When you try to cheat, you face the wrath of Satan
The Bruins were in double overtime of Game 4 in their first round playoff series against the Buffalo Sabres when the Sabres were whistled for a too many men on the ice penalty. As the power play was ticking away, Michael Ryder found Miroslav Satan in slot. Miro "The Hero" faked a shot on the forehand and beat Ryan Miller with a backhander to take a 3-1 series lead over the Sabres.
Facts about the '09-'10 Bruins and Too Many Men on the Ice Calls:
- The Bruins were called for Too Many Men on The Ice 14 times this season (12 in the regular season and twice in the playoffs).
- The Bruins first and last goal against of the season were the created by "too many men on the ice" penalties. Brooks Laich of the Washington Capitals scored a power play goal on opening night after the B's were whistled for too many men on the ice in the first period.
- The league average was 8.03 too many men on the ice penalties per team for the regular season.
- The Bruins accounted for 5% of the 241 too many men on the ice calls in the NHL during the '09-'10 regular season.