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Recap: Ullmark, depth scoring lift B’s to 3-1 win over Florida

W.

Boston Bruins v Florida Panthers Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images

The Bruins came into Whatever It Is Called Now Arena off of a frustrating loss to Tampa and facing a hot Florida team that wanted a pound of flesh from McAvoy.

None of that really mattered, as the B’s got huge goaltending from Linus Ullmark and goals from Charlie Coyle, Johnny Beecher, and Jake DeBrusk to end the Dads Trip on a happy note and skate out of Florida with a 3-1 win.

The win improved the Bruins’ record to 14-1-3, increasing their Atlantic cushion to six points.

McAvoy was a marked man from the opening face-off, taking a couple of big hits. The first, from noted chokehold enthusiast Ryan Lomberg, was probably late.

Another, from Nick Cousins, came with a nice, high finish:

Lomberg then auditioned for the 2024 Olympics with an outstanding dive. No notes, 10/10. Ignore the Tweet caption, Shattenkirk got the only penalty. HighlightHarbor cracked the Thanksgiving bourbon early.

On we go! The Panthers had far more shots/chances in the early part of the first, but Linus Ullmark was huge.

Coyle then got the Bruins on the board with a great individual effort late in the first. 1-0 Bruins.

Shortly thereafter, Anton Lundell cross-checked Matt Poitras in the neck/chin and skated away with a two-minute minor. Sorry for the quality, it’s the only replay I could find.

Into the second we went, where Jonah Gadjovich took exception to a relatively innocuous hit from Derek Forbort, and the two got together to exchange Thanksgiving recipes.

Lundell would be involved again midway through the second period, credited for a wacky goal that seemed to deflect three or four times. 1-1 game.

Less than a minute later, Beecher showed some great patience to wait out Sergei Bobrovsky and tuck the puck home to make it 2-1 Bruins.

Ullmark made a huge save on Kevin Stenlund to keep it a 2-1 Bruins lead...

...then DeBrusk would extend that lead with a greasy goal about 45 seconds later. 3-1 Bruins.

That was that!

The Panthers landed a few shots on net with the goalie pulled, but rarely looked a serious threat to Ullmark.

3-1 final from Sunrise.

Game notes

  • The Panthers did their best to get revenge on Charlie McAvoy in this game, running him early, often, and with questionable legality. On the one hand, you can’t blame Florida for wanting to leave a mark after a dirty hit. On the other hand, I’m not sure it had its intended effect, as McAvoy was relatively unbothered.
  • Linus Ullmark: immense. He finished the night with 27 saves, including three or four huge ones early and the highlight-reel one on Stenlund shown above. Not to belabor the “last year” point, but it’s hard to watch a game like tonight’s and not wonder what could have been with a healthy Ullmark last spring.
  • Early on, it looked like the Bruins were headed for another undisciplined evening, with four minor penalties (though one was offsetting) in the first period. However, they tightened it up after that, staying out of the box for the rest of the night (excluding Forbort’s fighting major).
  • Danton Heinen continues to impress. He was on the scoresheet tonight with one assist, but he seems to make 3 or 4 good, but hard to define, plays on a nightly basis. Smart plays to clear the zone, for example, or good positioning along the wall to keep possession on offense. He’s kind of like a defensive defenseman in that what he does is often hard to quantify, but you know it when you see it.
  • Per the TNT broadcast, the Bruins’ win improved Jim Montgomery’s record to 79-13-8 through 100 games — the best mark through 100 games in franchise history. To further simplify that stat, the Bruins have won or earned a point in 87% of the regular season games Montgomery has coached. Most of us (myself included) have taken the recent success for granted to a degree, but those figures are insane.
  • Seven of the Bruins’ 12 forwards recorded a point, while David Pastrnak and Brad Marchand were surprisingly two of the five who didn’t.
  • I thought it was another good night for Jakub Lauko, who drew a holding call in the first period by keeping his legs moving and earned an assist on the Beecher goal.
  • It was a good night for Forbort as well, with a fight, some physical play, plenty of blocked shots, and an overwhelmingly positive impact on the game.
  • Mason Lohrei saw his ice time reduced down the stretch, skating just three shifts in the third period. This was likely his last game with the B’s for now, with Matt Grzelcyk ready to return. While many fans have pointed to issues in recent games, it’s fair to say that his first NHL call-up was a success.

The B’s will be off tomorrow before hosting the Red Wings at TD Garden at 1 PM on Friday. Why did the NHL take away the 11 AM Black Friday Game? Because they hate fun, I guess.

Happy (American) Thanksgiving to all, enjoy the day!