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Recap: More of the same as mistakes doom B’s in Game 6 loss to Florida


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

At this point, we’re running out of ways to describe the same problem, and now, the Bruins have officially run out of room for mistakes.

Turnovers, loose coverage, and some shaky goaltending combined into another debacle for the B’s, who lost Game 6 by a score of 7-5, setting up a winner-take-all Game 7 on Sunday at the Garden.

Bear with me, there’s a lot to get to here, and not much of it is pretty.

Brandon Montour got the scoring started early for Florida, beating Linus Ullmark on a 4-on-3 PP to make it 1-0 Florida.

Tyler Bertuzzi would respond four minutes later with a playoff-style goal, banging home a loose puck in front to make it a 1-1 game.

Seven minutes later, Connor Clifton committed a brutal, unforced turnover that led to a Florida 2-on-1, which Matthew Tkachuk converted to make it 2-1 Florida.

David Pastrnak would break his scoring drought in style early in the second period, making it a 2-2 game.

The Bruins appeared to take a 3-2 lead shortly after that, but the goal was wiped off the board after review due to this (alleged) hand pass by Jake DeBrusk.

Aleksandr Barkov would break his own scoring drought a few minutes later, making it 3-2 Florida.

90 seconds into the third, Bertuzzi was back at it with a laser, making it a 3-3 game for real this time.

Just two minutes later, the B’s would take their first lead of the night, with the Bertuzzi-Pastrnak connection cashing in on the power play to make it 4-3 Bruins.

Not content to be ahead for once, the Bruins somehow leave Zac Dale all alone in the slot, and...yeah. 4-4 game.

After a Hampus Lindholm delay of game penalty, a great effort from Pavel Zacha led to a solo chance for Jake DeBrusk, and he didn’t miss. 5-4 Bruins.

Once again, the Bruins decided they didn’t like being ahead, allowing a game-tying PPG to Tkachuk 27 seconds later and making it a 5-5 game.

The B’s would go behind for good just over three minutes later, as Eetu Luostarinen beats Ullmark on a shot you simply have to save in that situation. 6-5 Panthers.

The B’s had a decent chance with the goalie pulled on a net-front scramble, but Sam Reinhart would end it with a bank-shot empty netter from his own face-off circle.

Bruins LOSE, 7-5 final.

Game notes

  • I don’t even know where to being. Terrible turnovers. Huge gaps in coverage. Let ups in intensity. Leaky goaltending. It all came together, in a bad way.
  • It’s unfair to heap too much blame on the coach, as the players are the ones on the ice. But it’s fair, at this point, to question whether or not Jim Montgomery has pushed the wrong buttons in this series. Clifton drew back in tonight and was directly responsible for the second goal and again failed to get the puck out (with some non-help from Nick Foligno) on the game-winner. He was a minus-3, and unless Matt Grzelcyk is actually hurt, won’t be playing in Game 7.
  • Speaking of won’t be playing, you have to think Linus Ullmark will be on the bench for Game 7. As many of you have noted, he simply hasn’t looked right in recent games in this series, and tonight saw more of that. Swayman probably should have started a game before now, but he almost certainly will start (now with even more rust) after tonight.
  • That’s not to say that the loss was Ullmark’s fault, as I wouldn’t necessarily classify any of the goals as truly soft. But the Luostarinen one in particular, and probably the Montour goal, are ones you’d expect Ullmark to stop. Luostarinen deserves some credit for a well placed shot, but replays showed there was no deflection and no real screen.
  • The B’s also got “not good enough” performances from two of their leaders, as Patrice Bergeron and the returning David Krejci were both pointless. Bergeron, surprisingly, finished at minus-3.
  • It was nice to see Pastrnak get on the board (twice), though many will fairly point at the missed breakaway in the third too. If goalscorers thrive on confidence, he should be in a better place heading into Game 7.
  • I know plus-minus has its flaws, but it’s worth noting that Charlie Coyle was the only Bruin to skate out of this game in the black at plus-1.
  • For all of their terrible play, the Bruins still had two different one-goal leads in the third period, and blew both of them. I’m not entirely sure what Forbort was thinking leaving Tkachuk alone for two whacks at goal on the 5-5 goal, and the lack of coverage on the Dalpe goal is simply inexcusable.
  • The B’s are now heading home for Game 7, where they’ve been the worse team in this series and, paraphrasing Montgomery, might be turning the puck over too much because they’re trying to hard to please the fans. Everything is fine.

So there you have it! On the balance of things, it’s hard to argue that the Bruins have deserved better from this series thus far.

To their credit, Florida has been the better team for long stretches, and now the Panthers come back to Boston with (given expectations) nothing to lose and all the pressure on the home team.

The league hasn’t announced a start time for Game 7 yet, as it’s likely awaiting the outcome of the rest of Friday’s games.

Let you anger out in the comments, this is a (relatively) safe space.

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