WASHINGTON, DC - Well it certainly wasn’t the best second period of the season for the Boston Bruins.
After a very solid opening 20 minutes, the Washington Capitals shifted the momentum towards their direction outshooting Boston 12-9 and cut the lead to 3-2 after 40 minutes. Former Montrael Canadiens forward Mike Ribeiro – a villain still to some Bruins fans – got the Caps on the board with his eighth of the year and Tomas Kundratek tallied his first career NHL goal to pull his team within one.
Here are three observations from the middle twenty.
1. While the Bruins D held strong in the first period, the problems that have plagued them the past few games continued in the middle stanza. Zdeno Chara and Johnny Boychuk have been pretty consistent for the most part, but they were caught running around on Ribeiro’s tally at 5:46. And Andrew Ference’s struggles continues as he is a -1 on the night.
2. Through two periods, the Bruins have only won 48 percent of their face-offs. Their most crucial loss came on Kundratek’s goal at 11:32 when Nicklas Backstrom and Eric Fehr outworked the Bruins third line and fed the Caps rookie to pull their team within one.
3. Not all was bad for the Black and Gold for the middle 20, however. With momentum on the Capitals side, Washington had a golden chance to tie things up with a power play late in the period. As has been the case throughout the year, however, the Bruins’ penalty kill stood strong in a crucial situation allowing very few chances on the Caps’ power play.