This game started in a way of ass. The Bruins were playing exceptionally sluggishly, and paid for it from a disgracefully bad Oskar Steen boarding that turned into...well...a good screen for Derek Grant.
1-0, and they were lucky to get out of the period at 1-0.
Things started okay with a power play but then...
2-0 Ducks off a shorthanded bid.
Things got better from some double Czech action! Nosek got an exceptional feed through to Pastrnak who put a missile straight past John Gibson. 2-1!
David Pastrnak's goal: Tomas Nosek escapes pressure and uses the space he's given to set up Pastrnak for a one-timer. 20 on the year or 88. pic.twitter.com/T21P0a56NK— Patrick Donnelly (@PatDonn12) January 25, 2022
And then things got worse! Ryan Getzlaf was able to muscle into the middle of the ice and put a bullet past Rask to make it 3-1.
Then, Taylor Hall mitigated the pain on the power play when he got this absolutely gorgeous feed from Brad Marchand to put the B’s within one! 3-2 Ducks.
Taylor Hall cashes in on the power play.— Conor Ryan (@ConorRyan_93) January 25, 2022
Sweet feed from Brad Marchand.
3-2 game. pic.twitter.com/WNWlZ5Czgf
Surely the B’s would use this momentum to eventually tie the game, right?
It was always a player going down tonight. Always.... 4-2.
And then it got worse thanks to Greg Pateryn getting another good shot through... 5-2.
Erik Haula got to pull them close late!
Erik Haula makes it a 5-3 game.— Conor Ryan (@ConorRyan_93) January 25, 2022
Nice set-up by Mike Reilly. pic.twitter.com/vWv50BgGpc
...But the B’s couldn’t come back. 5-3 Bruins lose.
- Your TOI leader was Charlie McAvoy, with under 20 minutes of TOI at even strength, 24:25 logged in total.
- Rask didn’t have a great game and he copped to it afterwards, specifically noting that his tracking and puck management was off. If nothing else, it’s good to know he’s aware of it.
- The team in general seems to be aware that accelerating the plan to get him up to speed might put them in some less than favorable positions as Cassidy suggested in the post-game. I for one, given Swayman’s .850 SV% against playoff teams this season, probably would’ve preferred Ullmark tonight, but if this is the kind of thing the B’s have to do to sandblast the rust off Rask’s game, then so be it. It will hurt, it will suck, but it will be done before May, and that’s the important part.
- Though of course, it would’ve helped if the Bruins hadn’t taken most of the first period off. They got completely shelled by the Ducks through the first 40 minutes of play, and listless defense, terrible screens of their own players, letting attacking players sit unbothered in the slot...the B’s are lucky the score wasn’t worse, because with exception they played miserably tonight. 16 shots to 8 through almost half an hour? Winless when down by just two goals after 40 minutes? C’mon.
- Nick Foligno’s injury was just the cap of an atrocious game on his part, having a direct hand in creating an Anaheim goal, punching up a couple of players and then largely playing uninvolved, listless hockey at an unacceptable pace given the team in front of him. I hope for his sake that his injury isn’t serious, and he comes back ready to play.
- Oskar Steen had a clunker of a game, starting with a dangerous boarding that should’ve been 5 minutes and then somehow negotiated down to 2 (in which the B’s gave up a goal), was a frequent target of post-play scrums, and in general had a pretty rough night at evens.
- Really, the only actual positive is that the entire 2nd line was responsible for all Bruins scoring tonight. Hall got a greasy one in the netfront, as did Haula, and David Pastrnak put another bullet through a tough goalie. He also had another shot so powerful it snapped a defender’s stick and hit the post. If that’s the kind of power Pasta’s putting through those sticks he keeps breaking, I’m absolutely not envious of any defenseman who gets hit with them.
- Also David Pastrnak is now tied for team lead in goals. This is why you don’t let low Shooting-%’s on good players in the early season fool you, kids. Eventually things even out.
- The Bruins have a day off for travel, and then face the Colorado Avalanche on Wednesday, the Avs are, once again, on a tear. That game drops the puck at 10pm EST.
We’ll see you there.