The Boston Bruins outpowered the Washington Capitals on special teams to come away with a 4-3 win at the TD Garden tonight.
The B’s were 67% on the power play to score two crucially-timed goals and ultimately edge out Washington in the third period’s final minute.
Although the score differential was tight, the Bruins dominated offensive-zone time for a majority of the game and outshot the Capitals by nearly double each period.
The Bruins started the game strong with offensive-zone possession, but the Capitals scored on their first shot of the game by Evgeny Kuznetsov. 1-0 Caps.
The B’s second and third lines kept up the tempo though and o-zone time by cycling and working the slot in the following shifts.
Those efforts led to David Pastrnak’s tying goal, making it 1-1 at 8:37 of the first.
The B’s suffered their first offensive blow in the first period when a heavy hit by Tom Wilson sent Anton Blidh down the tunnel and out for the game’s remainder.
The game’s physicality increased by the first period’s end and into the second period.
The Bruins kept pressure on Vitek Vanecek, but also found themselves shorthanded in the second frame.
The penalty kill units, however, came up big to stop Alex Ovechkin’s shot from reaching Linus Ullmark. The defenders cleared the front of the net and kept the Capitals from developing chances in the slot.
The B’s defense did a nice job overall throughout the first 40 minutes of poking the puck loose on top of the paint.
But like the first, the second period saw another Bruins’ forward exit the contest. Brad Marchand did not return for the third period after a high hit from Garnet Hathaway. That penalty gave way to the Pastrnak’s second tally of the night.
The other half of special teams, the power-play units, capitalized on their first man-advantage of the night. Pastrnak’s breakaway goal gave the Bruins a 2-1 lead in the second period.
Lars Eller netted the tying goal eight minutes later to end the second period. 2-2.
Much like the previous periods, the Bruins controlled the game’s momentum in the final frame.
With the injuries though, lines became even more shuffled. Jake DeBrusk moved up to the top line and eventually netted the go-ahead after a play review ruled his “last-touched goal” good, making the score 3-2 Bruins.
The Capitals bounced back fast with the tying goal 30 seconds later from Nicklas Backstrom. 3-3.
Special teams reigned supreme in the third period’s final minutes, as Charlie McAvoy’s blast from the slot sealed the win for the Bruins with 45 seconds left. Final score: 4-3 Bruins.
The Bruins return to the TD Garden on Saturday January 22 at 3:00 pm against the Winnipeg Jets.
Here’s a look at all the goal by period!
The Capitals opened the scoring at 4:07 of the first period.
After picking up the puck in the left-wing circle, Kuznetsov patiently walked in towards the short-side post where he put a wrister top-shelf over Ullmark’s blocker. 1-0 Capitals.
January 21, 2022
The Bruins tied the game at 4:53 of the first period.
Taylor Hall slid a pass through two Caps’ defenders to Pastrnak at the top of the paint where he put a one-timer past Vanecek’s glove. 1-1 game.
strikes back pic.twitter.com/cKC8h9uAqe— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) January 21, 2022
The Bruins took the lead at 8:37 of the second period on the power play.
Matt Grzelcyk found Pastrnak at center ice for a breakaway on Vanecek where he tapped in his second effort through his five-hole. 2-1 Bruins.
Serving up seconds. pic.twitter.com/BR1RGW6L0d— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) January 21, 2022
The Capitals tied the game at 16:12 of the second period.
After Connor McMichael won a board battle, Eller picked up the loose puck, skated into the left-wing circle and fired a wrist shot that hit Ullmark’s glove on its way just under the crossbar. 2-2 game.
El tigreeeeee! pic.twitter.com/6U6BBcJh7N— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) January 21, 2022
The Bruins gained the lead at 9:41 of the third period (but really about 30 seconds earlier).
DeBrusk threw a pass out front that hit Kuznetsov’s stick and found itself go through the legs of Vanecek. Although the puck crossed the goal line, Trevor van Riemsdyk recovered it and the play continued. After the next stoppage, the play was under review where it was found to be a good goal. 3-2 Bruins.
After review, this one's going to @Jdebrusk. pic.twitter.com/WhhsCtAgZQ— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) January 21, 2022
The Capitals tied the game again at 10:17 of the third period.
In the corner, Tom Wilson found Backstrom in the right face-off circle for a wrist shot over Ullmark’s glove. 3-3 game.
Saint Nick gets his first of the season! pic.twitter.com/XEeRsRsO4J— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) January 21, 2022
The Bruins scored the winning goal at 19:15 of the third period on the power play.
DeBrusk found McAvoy skating into the slot where he let a wrist shot rip blocker-side past Vanecek’s. Final score: 4-3 Bruins.
CHUCKIE CLUTCH. @CMcAvoy44 | @JagermeisterUSA pic.twitter.com/4uoi1icOg1— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) January 21, 2022