For the second straight game the Bruins had a chance to clinch a playoff spot with just one point, but for the second time in a row the Bruins failed in their quest to pick up the point they need. The Bruins traveled to Carolina to take on a Hurricanes team that had won just one of its last 15 heading into Saturday’s contest and left Carolina with a frustrating 3-2 loss.
The Bruins had their chances throughout the night, but Hurricanes goalie Justin Peters stood tall stopping 28 of 30 Bruins shots just four days after allowing two goals on four shots in relief of Dan Ellis in Mondays 6-1 Bruins win over the Hurricanes in Boston.
The Bruins got off to a good start just over six minutes into the opening frame as a Matt Bartkowski shot from the point deflected off Milan Lucic for his much needed sixth goal of the season. Later in the first with just under a minute to go, Jeff Skinner would beat Tuukka Rask from a weird angle on the power play to send the teams into the first intermission knotted at one.
After Jiri Tlusty and Tyler Seguin traded second period tallies, the Bruins entered the third just 20 minutes away from clinching their sixth straight playoff appearance, but another power play goal by the Hurricanes, this time off the stick of former Bruin Joe Corvo put the Bruins’ playoff plans on hold for at least one more game. Tlusty would later go on to add his second goal of the night, an empty net goal.
“We got some brain cramps there at times on the PK (penalty kill) and those mistakes on the PK were not helpful either” said Bruins head coach Claude Julien. “They got two power play goals there, but those are things right now we are dealing with.”
The Bruins failed to score on all three of their power plays which included a short 5-3 advantage. The Bruins had a golden chance for their third power play goal in as many games as Jaromir Jagr was left all alone on Peters’ doorstop with a wide open net, but Peters was somehow able to get his glove on Jagr’s shot keeping this tied at one.
The Bruins allowed two power play goals on Saturday for only the second time all season. The Tampa Bay Lightning scored two power play goals against the Bruins back on March 2, the Bruins won that contest though 3-2.
“We could have been better and we allowed them too much time, and at the same time seam passes where the seam should have been covered for that one timer” added Julien.
Not only did the Bruins miss out on their chance to punch a ticket into the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but the Bruins missed out a chance to regain the lead in the Northeast Division as the Canadiens were embarrassed by the Maple Leafs, 5-1 in Toronto.
The Bruins return to action Monday night when they host the Ottawa Senators.