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Recap: Bruins edged out, 2-1, by Capitals

It wasn’t the return from break that the Bruins wanted.

NHL: Washington Capitals at Boston Bruins Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

It wasn’t the return from break that the Boston Bruins were looking for today, as they fell, 2-1, to the Washington Capitals at the TD Garden.

The Bruins’ game progressed as the game went on, with a great second period, but the team’s play was riddled with overpassing and slow decision making.

Here are the highlights:

First period:

The Capitals opened the scoring at 6:28 of the first period on the power play.

Along the goal line, Nicklas Backstrom picked up the loose puck from Marcus Johansson’s attempts for a low shot past Jeremy Swayman. 1-0 Capitals.

Second period:

The Capitals took a two-goal lead at 11:40 of the second period.

Jakub Lauko failed to clear the puck from the zone as Garnet Hathaway picked up the attempt, skated to the high slot and let a wrist shot fly over Swayman’s glove. 2-0 Capitals.

The Bruins cut into their deficit at 16:34 of the second period.

From behind the net, Connor Clifton backhanded a pass out front that Nick Foligno collected in the paint to quickly lift over Darcy Kuemper’s glove. 2-1 game.

Third period:

No goals

Final score: 2-1 Capitals

Game notes

  • The Bruins had a hard time getting going today. It’s hard to use the excuse that the Bruins were off for an extended time and this was how things would go today. The Capitals had the same amount of time off, but were hungrier to start the first period and sustained that type of energy throughout the game.
  • The B’s did pick up their offensive game and got back on track in the second period. They also limited the Capitals to only three shots on net during the frame. In fact, the Caps only had one shot on net through 11:40 in the second, but their second shot came with their second goal on the power play.
  • The Bruins’ third line of Nick Foligno, Charlie Coyle and Taylor Hall was the most consistent line. Despite the loss, the line generated chances out front – especially from Foligno. The line combined for six shots on goal and they were the closest to get a tying goal. Foligno now has eight goals this season. Today, he had three SOG.
  • Lauko logged a mere 5:10 TOI. I don’t believe he had another shift after the turnover on Hathaway’s goal.
  • Head Coach Jim Montgomery said postgame that the level of competition is rising with each game of this second half. Teams are playing desperate, trying to improve in the standings and vie playoff positioning. Patrice Bergeron and Foligno echoed the same sentiment postgame that teams will be chomping at the bits and the Bruins are going to need to match their desperation.
  • Foligno felt the Bruins’ execution was off. He said they played a lot of good minutes and had chances, but they couldn’t put them in or finish on plays.
  • The execution goes along with overpassing. There were times today the Bruins got a little cute in the offensive zone when they should have taken the shot or simplified plays around the net.
  • It hasn’t happened often this season, but the Capitals held the Bruins to one goal, even though the Bruins outshot them 28-23. It’s only the fourth time this season the Bruins have scored one or no goals during a game.
  • The Bruins will hit the road for a two-game trip this upcoming week, seeing the Dallas Stars on Tuesday, Feb. 14 at 8:30 p.m. and Nashville Predators on Feb. 16, at 8 p.m.