This team has officially sealed its place in Bruins franchise history, despite the shortened season - their 8-1-1 start is offiically the best record after ten games since the Bruins came to town. Let's break down what went well and what went awry in tonight's game.
+ How about Anton Khudobin? Whether you're calling him dob-stopper, dobby, qdoba, or whatever - the point is, his style, reminiscent of Tim Thomas, is fun to watch - and definitely wasn't what the Sabres were expecting. He stopped 25 of 26 shots, and now has a 2.00 GAA in two games. His energy and effort to get across the crease and dynamically stop shots is fantastic - and Bruins fans should get used to feeling confident when he's in net.
+ Brad Marchand's few games off clearly helped - he appears to have bounced back stronger than ever. He's now had three goals in the two games against the Sabres this season, and the Bruins need that when playing against a top-line goalie like Ryan Miller.
+ the Marchand-Bergeron-Horton line looked fantastic. It was definitely a question mark pre-game with Marchand potentially being out, but their line looked even better than the Krejci line for a significant part of the night.
+ A POWER PLAY GOAL. Feels like seeing bigfoot or the loch ness monster or a yeti or something....but nope, that was actually a power play goal. Strong work by Bergeron to bury the rebound off a Chris Bourque shot gone wide.
+ Best first-10-game record in franchise history!
+ Interesting to see Claude Julien switch Dennis Seidenberg up to Zdeno Chara's pairing in order to just shut Buffalo down in the last few minutes. The "playoffs pairing" was highly effective at limiting Buffalo's chances, even on the man advantage with Miller out of the net.
+ Julien on David Krejci's pass to Milan Lucic for the ENG: "David is so unselfish. he wants to make sure his linemates are taken care of, and for him an assist is as good as a goal in that case." Ha.
+ Thomas Vanek, last game's major problem, was limited to exactly one shot on goal. Lesson clearly learned.
+ Bruins now have the lowest goals-allowed total in the NHL. Strong work.
- Dougie Hamilton was the only minus player on the night. This was probably his worst game yet - he got caught in a hard place behind the net on the Sabres' only goal of the night, after a botched pass meant for Dennis Seidenberg. While it's not a shock to see the 19-year-old struggle a bit early in his NHL career, he's been so good until now that it's a little startling. This -should- be an anomaly, nothing to worry about.
- Gregory Campbell's fight with Patrick Kaleta. While it was nice to see Campbell take on Kaleta after Kaleta skated all the way across the ice to hammer Dennis Seidenberg, he was outmatched and took the extra two minute instigator penalty. Which is a crap penalty anyways, but whatever.
Brad Marchand's goal: "shhhhhhh"
Patrice Bergeron's goal: "oh my god!"