What we learned: Bruins bounce back after Vancouver letdown
If you caught Monday afternoon’s contest with the Calgary Flames, you surely were entertained. After their most lopsided loss of the season in Vancouver Saturday night, the Bruins bounced back Monday with an impressive 2-1 overtime victory.
Following Saturday’s letdown, the Bruins needed a better effort in their second of five straight on the road. They got just that.
The victory pulls the Bruins within one point — with two games in hand — of the Atlantic Division-leading Tampa Bay Lightning. The Bruins won’t have much time to enjoy the victory, however, as they travel to Edmonton to face Connor McDavid and the rest of the Oilers in the second game of their back-to-back in the Canadian province of Alberta.
Here is what we learned after the Bruins completed the two-game season sweep of the Flames.
David Pastrnak and Brad Marchand end scoring droughts
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) February 20, 2018
There’s no arguing that the trio of Pastrnak, Marchand and Patrice Bergeron form one of the best lines in NHL. But the Bruins’ top two wingers entered Monday afternoon in separate scoring funks.
Both Pastrnak and Marchand picked a good time to snap their respective offensive slumps. Pastrnak ended his six-game point drought with his first-period tally, while Marchand snapped a five-game scoring skid with his overtime winner.
Thanks to their creativity, both Pastrnak and Marchand created multiple scoring chances against the Flames. The Bruins certainly hope that the floodgates will once again open for both Pastrnak and Marchand during the home stretch.
Tuukka Rask bounces back; steals the show in overtime
This guy was 🔥 in OT. pic.twitter.com/Z8rJxAeE0p
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) February 19, 2018
Saturday’s loss to the Canucks was ugly for everyone involved. But when a team allows six goals in one game, a lot of the blame is usually directed toward the goaltender, or in Saturday’s case, goaltenders. That was no different in Vancouver when Rask was pulled after allowing four goals on eight first period shots.
As expected, Monday was a different story for both Rask and the Bruins. The Vezina Trophy candidate was phenomenal on Monday, but even better in overtime when he was forced to be at his best.
The Flames had five shots on goal in the extra frame, with several scoring chances coming in the prime scoring areas. But Rask stood tall and ultimately gave Marchand a chance to seal the deal.
A different David Rittich
Filling in for the injured Mike Smith, Rittich had a rough night in Boston six nights ago. Although it wasn’t the result he had wanted, Monday’s contest was much different.
The Bruins had numerous odd-man rushes, several prime chances on the doorstep and two breakaway attempts, but only had two goals to show for it.
Rittich was a stud for over 60 minutes and allowed the pesky Flames to pick up one point.