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Game Recap: Bruins vs. Leafs 11/11/17

Let’s break down tonight’s game, shall we?

Boston Bruins v Toronto Maple Leafs Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

1st Period:

As expected the Leafs are without Auston Mathews and the Bruins start Tuukka Rask. Bruce Cassidy decides the Jake DeBrusk is due for a game up top and Vatrano slots in, as does O’Gara for Postma.

Both teams start out strong with each getting some good looks early in the first despite an OT game last night. The two teams have a meeting of the minds over a Pasta hit on resident pest Nazem Kadri which results in matching roughing penalties to Marchand and Komarov.

Shortly after the penalty is killed, Carlo makes an egregious pass to Mitch Marner who snipes high glove side, Leafs up by one. The Bruins go on the PP on a Kadri penalty almost immediately afterwards but cannot convert, despite facing a career journeyman in net.

The game has been physical up to this point with the Bruins laying some heavy hits in their own zone, including a beautiful shoulder to shoulder hit by Krug. Carlo continues his rough night by taking a hooking penalty at 14:09. Andddd it’s 2-0 Leafs on a guess who goal, James Van Reimsdyk from Kadri. As has become a trend, the Bruins failed to clear the net front which allowed JVR to re-direct Kadri’s shot.

Thankfully, fresh legged Frankie V gets a tip in on Krug shot shortly afterwards pulling the Bruins within one, and breathing some life into the Black & Gold.

In what is quickly becoming a penalty fest, Marchand takes his second penalty of the night, this time for tripping against his old friend Nazem Kadri. The Bruins manage to kill the penalty as time expires in the first period.

2nd Period:

Really nothing doing until the 13 minute mark where the Bruins get a number of good looks. Up to this point Frank Vatrano has been the Bruin’s best player. Yes, that Vatrano... He is even using the body absolutely bodying Zaitsev along the boards. The Bruins are out shooting the Leafs 13-7 at this point, and the hits are 14-11 in Boston’s favor, however the Leafs still lead 2-1 on the scoreboard.

With 8 minutes left, Matt Martin leveled Bjork with a hit to the head but ended up hurting himself.

At this point the Bruins have a comfortable lead in shots on goals, at 23-11 but haven’t been able to solve McElhinney.

Beleskey “fights” Matt Martin and Bjork finally takes another shift after Martin hit at the five minute mark. Vatrano getting sick of fans actually praising him decides he should take an interference penalty behind the play during a period the Bruins were roundly outplaying Leafs.

At the end of the 2nd, the Bruins are leading the Leafs in literally every major stat except goals. Still 2-1 bad guys.

3rd Period:

Bruins go to the PP less than three minutes into the period and old friend Dominic Moore trips Bergeron to make it 5 on 3 for roughly a minute. Bruins fail to get any real pressure as they try to get too cute with the puck. Shortly thereafter they give up a goal by Rielly with assists from JVR and Marner, who else...

The Bruins get another power play on a Bozak interference penalty, but as has been the trend, they fail to score. After this point the Bruins start looking a bit deflated and fail to get any real sustained pressure. They pulled Rask with 2:30 left in the game to zero effect. Maybe the legs got tired, or maybe the team just packed it in but the Leafs get an empty netter with 1:47 left to seal the loss. Next up? Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday at 10PM EST for the annual California swing. Going to be a tough road trip.