The Bruins are heading into the All-Star break on a high note, as a three-goal outburst in the third period propelled them to a 5-2 road win in Toronto.
Calle Jarnkrok cut the Bruins’ lead to 3-2 midway through the third period, but two Pavel Zacha goals in three minutes gave the Bruins a cushion that would hold up.
After a scoreless first period, Derek Forbort (!) scored shorthanded (!!) to make it 1-0 Bruins.
Mitch Marner would take advantage of a bad line change just three minutes later, making it a 1-1 game.
Mitch Marner levels the game with this absolute snipe. pic.twitter.com/qUDb1M8k4y— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) February 2, 2023
Not to be outdone by Scorebort, Brandon Carlo potted a goal of his own some three minutes after Marner, making it 2-1 Bruins.
AJ Greer scored off the rush two minutes into the third period to make it 3-1 Bruins, then decided to answer the bell against Wayne Simmonds, which maybe wasn’t the best decision.
Fight Night.— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) February 2, 2023
A.J. Greer scores a goal and instantly fights Wayne Simmonds off the following faceoff. pic.twitter.com/Mkn1i3uk7c
Jarnkrok gave the Leafs life nine minutes into the third period, collecting the puck in the slot and beating fellow Swede Ullmark to cut it to 3-2 Bruins.
After that, it was the Pavel Zacha Show.
Zacha beat Ilya Samsonov with a glove-side laser 30 seconds after Jarnkrok’s goal to make it 4-2 Bruins.
Pavel Zacha with a laser beam to restore the lead for Boston. pic.twitter.com/UiwCiCoiPA— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) February 2, 2023
Zacha’s next goal 3:11 later was a tap-in, thanks to some excellent work from the Czech Daves. 5-2 Bruins.
1️⃣ for the , ✌️️ for the show pic.twitter.com/lC6fMGwgmV— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) February 2, 2023
And that was it! 5-2 final as the Bruins win their second game in a row against the Leafs and snap their three-game losing skid.
- With sports betting now legal in Massachusetts, you probably could have paid off your mortgage by putting money on Derek Forbort and Brandon Carlo being the first two Bruins scorers tonight.
- For Carlo, I think that may be the first time I’ve seen him that deep in the offensive zone. Given the tough nights he’s had recently, particularly bundling his own goalie in Tampa, that goal had to feel good.
- A three-goal win feels pretty comfortable and isn’t quite “stole a game” territory, but Ullmark was terrific for the Bruins again tonight, particularly during flurries of Toronto pressure in the first period.
- A 5-2 win in Toronto is going to have plenty of highlights for B’s fans, but Michael Bunting’s multiple temper tantrums may have been the best part of the night. Turns out when you spend most of your time throwing yourself to the ice, the refs don’t give you the benefit of the doubt. Who knew?
- It was another 0-fer for the Bruins’ power play, though at least this time there was only one PP opportunity.
- David Pastrnak’s efforts stood out on Zacha’s second goal: he started the play with a high lob into the zone, then was the first guy into the corner and forced a turnover that led to Krejci’s pass. It was a quiet night for Pastrnak in terms of goals, but he made his presence felt.
- In a weird quirk, Connor Clifton was the only Bruins defenseman to not record a point tonight.
- Raise your hand if you thought Forbort would have as many points as Bergeron, Marchand, Pastrnak, and Hall combined.
That’s it for the unofficial first half of the season! The B’s head into the All-Star break with a 39-7-5 record, which is, by my calculations, pretty good.