The first period Bruins looked like a team that had nothing to play for, and just wanted to get through the game, and Ryan Dzingel made them pay. He wired a wrister past Khudobin to give the Senators the 1-0 lead. However, as Zdeno Chara said “there’s always [reason] to play for something, that’s what’s great about this game. It doesn't matter if it’s game 1 or 82.” The Bruins would slowly begin to play better in the beginning of the second, but needed a kickstart to get them on the board, and Mark Borowiecki’s interference call gave them that opportunity.
The Bruins fourth-ranked powerplay went to work, and didn't need long for David Pastrnak to even it up, both on the scoreboard and in manpower. He scored just five seconds into the man advantage. The Bruins weren't content there however, and 51 seconds later, due to some good work by the fourth line, Tommy Wingels saw his shot go off the post and in, giving the Bruins the lead for the first time in the game, and the ice started to tilt towards Daniel Taylor and the Senators zone. The Bruins would control 2 out of every 3 shot attempts at even strength in the final 40 minutes, proving that at least for now they could overcome not playing a full 60 minute game. Danton Heinen would give the Bruins an insurance goal picking the corner to make it 3-1, where it would stay into the third period. Shot attempt wise, the Senators played the Bruins fairly even until the Bruins first goal, and then the Bruins depth took over, with the top line having an uncharacteristically bad night, finishing as the Bruins worst 3 players by most shot and goal metrics at even strength.
Bobby Ryan (tied for a game high in shots with David Backes, who also had 5 shots) was frustrated he couldn’t put one past Khudobin, so he tried to set a screen for a shot from the point. The result was one of the most blatant goalie interference calls I've seen, just turning his back and ramming Khudobin right as the puck reaches the slot. Subtlety is key Bobby, keep working at it!
This one did not need to be reviewed in Toronto pic.twitter.com/ERKgBVCDnJ— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) April 8, 2018
Ryan Dzingel would catch the break Ryan couldn’t just after the Senators killed off a penalty. creating a 2 on 1 and catching Zdeno Chara playing the pass too much. With Anton Khudobin having overcommitted to the shot, this allowed him to deke around the sprawled goaltender and sneak the puck in on his forehand. Khudobin made a few big saves, including a groin pulling split save on a 2 on 1 to snuff out a Senators rally. The Bruins and Noel Acciari would leave no doubt, bringing the Bruins lead back up to two with a nice move to get the puck through Taylor’s five hole with roughly 2 minutes left in the third, making him the Bruins 11th 10+ goal scorer on the season. David Backes would add an empty netter to put the cherry on top of the 5-2 Bruins win.
The Bruins win ensures they control their own destiny: Win and they are the top seed in the East, facing the Devils. Lose and they are the second seed in the East, and in the Atlantic, and play the Toronto Maple Leafs.