Much of this period flew by with no notable concerns, both sides trading shots (though Boston got the lion’s share of them by far), and making saves. Things looked like that they would be going to the break 0-0...but then Nicklas Backstrom got the puck away in the neutral zone, and it all went to hell. 1-0 Caps.
Nevertheless, the game continued.
2nd Period, where nobody could block a shot if it would save their grandma:
This part of the game absolutely sucked.
First, Trevor Van Reimsdyk managed to sneak the puck past Rask when Ritchie and McAvoy could somehow not block a shot, putting the caps up 2-0 on a screen.
Trevor van Riemsdyk has scored and the Washington Capitals lead 2-0 over the Boston Bruins in second period. pic.twitter.com/c6eakjfhAv— Andy & Rono (@HockeyStatsCZ) January 31, 2021
And then, on the penalty kill, the Bruins again allowed the Caps to establish a screen, and local affront to decency Tom Wilson made things even worse by scoring. 3-0 Caps.
Thankfully, David Krejci and a 5-Forward power play got to work not too long after to create a pretty strong setup, and then Krejci put a shot on net that deflected off of Nick Ritchie, to get the B’s on the board! 3-1.
This. Period. RULED.
The Bruins first scored with a major hustle by Charlie McAvoy being rewarded as he fed Brad Marchand for an easy-peezy goal right out in front of Vanacek. 3-2!
And then, the Bruins just laid seige to the Capitals end, they rarely established any zone time whatsoever, and were finally rewarded in a net-man scramble, where who else but Charlie McAvoy would ensure the point for the Black and Gold. 3-3 Everybody.
Charlie McAvoy ties the game for his first goal of the season!!!— SAVAGE BOSTON (@SavageBoston) January 31, 2021
Overtime coming! pic.twitter.com/PvFxoI1z4X
I blinked and Ovechkin ended the game.
Whatever, game’s over, stole a point, get ‘em on Monday.
- The TOI leader for the Bruins tonight was, who else, Charlie McAvoy, with 19 minutes and change. The next closest was Jakub Zboril, with 17:57.
- Rough night for Tuukka Rask, who didn’t exactly finish with a stellar SV% nor did he look 100%. Of course...it’s hard to do that when the 2nd and 3rd Caps goal were a shot-block away from not even going on. Man was screened hard throughout the 2nd period, and nobody corrected course until goal 3. Rough night indeed.
- David Pastrnak’s first night back featured a lot of what makes him so good, minus the part everyone really likes (scoring goals). Dude was involved, he got an assist on the tying goal, the power play looked much more fluid and dangerous, and especially when Butch started getting creative. With how much punch they showed with that setup, I’m all for all-forward power plays in the near future. Here’s hoping Pasta gets back into the Richard conversation on Monday.
- If a fan loudly wonders out loud in 2021 why an NHL goaltender might be on his knees when the Hybrid/Butterfly style is practically the default style of goaltending by this point and has been for almost three (closer to four) decades, they should legally have to attend a children’s goaltending camp. That way, they can learn why that might be among their intellectual peers.
- Wasn’t crazy about a couple of defender’s nights, namely Miller and Lauzon for some pretty egregious decision making with the puck in the third period that turned the clock into even more of the B’s enemy, but otherwise pretty much every player outside of the fourth line was generating some consistent offense in front of Vitek Vanecek, minus the positioning required to really pounce on those rebounds. Something for Monday, I suppose.
- Nick Ritchie with another power play point, and led in all fancystats categories at evens in this game. It helps that the Caps just sat back and dared the B’s to score for large portions of this game.
- Alex Ovechkin is a damn machine, dude.
- While the game itself was pretty meh, the Bruins did almost everything right, and got this close to winning. Bad luck and a stunning lack of a bounce, specifically off the bodies of their backcheckers, made the difference. It happens, it sucks, but that’s what next game is for.
Their next game is against the Caps again on Monday, that game drops the puck at 6pm, we’ll see you there as you come back in from shoveling/snow blowing. Stay warm.