A silver lining in defeat
Although the Boston Bruins didn’t pick up a point in last night’s 3-2 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins at the TD Garden — the first time they haven’t managed one-point in five games — there’s still plenty of good stuff to remain optimistic about.
Before the good stuff, the Bruins failed to capitalize on a Pascal Dupuis double-minor penalty in the second period, went 0-for-4 on the power play, and have now gone just three for their last 30 man-advantage opportunities.
Michael Ryder: 19:35 TOI, 1-0-1, minus-1, 7 SOG
Now being on the first line with Marc Savard and Nathan Horton (with the injury to Milan Lucic), the red-hot Ryder has 2-1-3 and 14 SOG in three of his last four contests.
“I feel good. Ever since the first practice of the season I wanted to get off to a good start. Sometimes I have a tendency to start off slow but this year I came in amped and wanted to do that. I just have to stay consistent for the whole season now.”
Now lined with Horton on the right and Savard in the middle, Ryder is forced to his off-wing.
“I’m getting more and more comfortable. But I still have a tendency to go to the right side but I just remind myself. You fill in for everybody and I’m getting more and more comfortable with it.”
Nathan Horton: 18:44 TOI, 0-0-0, minus-1, 6 SOG
Although left off the score sheet, Horton and the Bruins’ top-line had plenty of chances. He also finished the game with two hits and 3:22 of ice time on the power play.
“I feel like we’re playing better and obviously getting more chances. It’d be nice to see more go in but we’re trying and I think it’s getting better.” Horton said. “We’ve had a fair amount of chances lately. We just have to keep trying and keep plugging away. Eventually they’re going to go in. It’s obviously frustrating but we have to keep up our confidence and keep working hard, and eventually something good will happen.
“He [Ryder] has such a good shot. Playing with Savard, too, you get the puck. He’s made some great plays, Savvy has, and with Ryder having such a pretty shot. It was nice for him to get one.
Gregory Campbell: 10:45 TOI, 0-1-1, E, 5 PIM
The story surrounding Campbell and the Bruins acquiring his this offseason just gets better and better. The “throw-in” part of the deal with Horton, from Florida, continues to be the best fourth-line center that we’ve seen in Boston in a very long time. The hard-nosed 27-year-old has posted 2-4-6 in three of his last four contests, and has upped his totals to 15 points (5 goals) on the season.
“Unfortunately you’re not going to win every game in this league and I think there’s a lot of things, a lot of positive things we can take from that game. We had an awful lot of chances and we played hard for the majority of the game so you know sometimes breaks are going to go here and there for the other team. And they played well so we just have to hold our heads high and take the positives and go back to work.”
On his fight with Craig Adams:
“He had a run in with Nathan [Horton] and Nathan doesn’t need to be doing that all the time so yeah. At a time like that when we’re down one it never hurts to provide a little energy.”
Tuukka Rask: 33 saves on 36 shots
Despite the loss and a few bad bounces, Rask played great for the Bruins between the pipes yesterday. His individual numbers on the season are still solid: 2.57 GAA and his .926 SV% is tied for third overall among all NHL netminders.
“…these are the games that you want to step up and win the game for your team because they played so well. And then today, you know, we lost. It sucks.”
If the game was entertaining…
“Oh yeah, for sure, good crowd. It just… sucks because we lost. And it’s one of those games you kind of want to step up and win for your team because they’re all over the place and they’re in there. But it’s a tough loss to swallow, at least for me. I think nobody’s happy here right now.”
Dennis Seidenberg: 27:08 TOI, 1-1-2, E, 7 SOG
Seidenberg is playing some of the best hockey we’ve seen to-date here in Boston. The 6-foot-1 blueliner has posted 2-7-9, plus-5, and 32 SOG in his last 10 contests — including 1-4-5, plus-2, 16 SOG in his last four.
“Well it was good pressure by the fourth line, I mean they were grinding it out. And the puck jumped out, I just shot it and Paille had a great screen in front of the net so it went in.”