Kicking off the always difficult three-game swing in California last night, the Bruins had hoped for a better result. After being leapfrogged by the Florida Panthers for first in the Atlantic Division after the Panthers defeated the Canadiens earlier in the evening, the Bruins had a chance to reclaim first place.
After the Sharks took the first lead of the game 8:44 into the opening frame, the Bruins bounced back with goals by David Krejci and Loui Eriksson before Brent Burns 26th of the year tied the game at two. With Adam McQuaid in the box in a tied third period, Joonas Donskoi scored the game winner to give the Sharks the series sweep over the Bruins.
Here is what we learned in the Bruins loss.
Krejci good to go:
After missing practice Monday afternoon, the Bruins recalled Frank Vatrano on an emergency basis incase Krejci was unable to go. Feeling pretty good, Krejci was in the lineup and was one of the better Bruins Tuesday night. Krejci had a goal and added an assist on Eriksson’s shorthanded tally. Krejci has seemed a bit slowed down by injury lately so this is certainly something to keep an eye on as the regular season winds down.
First regulation loss since trade deadline:
Since the acquisitions of Lee Stempniak and John-Michael Liles, the Bruins had not lost in regulation, going 5-0-2, prior to last night’s loss. The stretch has helped the Bruins climb to the top of the Atlantic Division standings which they now trail the Panthers by a point.
Things don’t get much easier for the Bruins as contests with the Ducks and Kings are next up on the docket. The Bruins will need to continue to find ways to pull out wins.
Chances there for Bruins:
The Bruins loss last night was not due to a lack of chances. From Krejci’s third period breakaway to Torey Krug’s last second shot from the slot, the Bruins had the chance to put the puck in the net.
“I felt like this game could have gone either way”, said Krejci. “They had some chances. We had some chances. They did some sloppy play defensively, and we did the same thing. It could have gone either way, but especially the second period, it wasn’t our best.”