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  • Bruins-Flyers takeaways: a 63rd win, a 60th goal, and a tribute to a mentor

    Tim Rosenthal April 10, 2023

    Within 48 hours, the Boston Bruins rewrote the NHL record book.

    A day after tying the NHL wins record in a thrilling 2-1 win over the New Jersey Devils, the Bruins wasted little time surpassing the 1995-96 Red Wings and 2018-19 Lightning with their 63rd victory of the season.

    The history didn’t end with Sunday’s 5-3 win in Philadelphia.

    David Pastrnak joined elite company after notching a hat trick against the Flyers to notch his first 60-goal season. The dynamic Czech playmaker became the second Bruin in franchise history to notch the milestone. He joins Phil Esposito, who accomplished the feat four times during his illustrious Boston tenure.


    Moreover, the Bruins earned their 63rd win during their load management phase of the season. Patrice Bergeron, David Krejci, Charlie McAvoy, Taylor Hall and Linus Ullmark all stayed home to watch the milestone win.

    The shorthanded Flyers wouldn’t surrender. Despite dressing just five defensemen, John Tortorella’s bunch stayed within striking distance throughout Sunday’s tense tilt.

    Charlie Coyle gave the Bruins a 1-0 lead just 47 seconds in. But the Flyers quickly countered, with Wade Allison taking advantage of a pair of blunders from Jeremy Swayman and Connor Clifton to tie the game at 1-1 a mere 17 seconds later.

    Despite the mishap, Swayman stood tall in his 34-save outing. He needed some help, however, after the Flyers took advantage of a pair of turnovers to cut the lead to one — twice — on Joel Farabee’s second-period breakaway and Owen Tippett’s third-period one-timer.

    Pastrnak paced the Bruins offensively with his latest hat trick en route to his 300th career NHL goal. He also factored into another insurance marker, assisting on Pavel Zacha’s one-timer to extend Boston’s lead to two late in regulation.

    With the wins record intact, the Bruins now sit one point behind the 1976-77 Canadiens for the league’s all-time point mark. They’ll get their first crack at surpassing that legendary Montreal squad on Tuesday when they host the Washington Capitals for the season’s final regular season tilt at TD Garden.

    In the meantime, here’s what we learned from another historic accomplishment.

    The wins record is ‘another feather in the cap.’

    Between the holiday weekend and the Flyers in Tank for Bedard mode, a handful of seats usually reserved for a fan dressed in orange and white were instead filled in black and gold.

    The well-traveled Bruins fanbase cheered for every goal, hit, and save. They littered the Wells Fargo Center ice with hats following Pastrnak’s third goal, and chanted “We want the Cup” in the closing moments.

    History sunk in for the thousands in attendance on Broad Street and in the households throughout New England watching the TNT telecast. The Bruins, indeed, earned greater appreciation for the record after the final buzzer.

    But they know a bigger prize lies ahead.


    “This is just another feather in the cap of a good season,” Coyle told reporters.

    “We hope this is just the beginning, but it’s definitely something we can take pride in.”

    Sunday’s matchup hardly resembled a playoff-like environment. Even so, the shorthanded Flyers wouldn’t go away quietly.

    The Bruins embraced the chance at history despite missing their captain and a handful of their battle-tested core. And now they have their name atop one page of the league’s history books.

    “We made history today in the biggest league in hockey,” Pastrnak told the media. “We definitely appreciate it.”

    The paying customers received more than their money’s worth with the wins record and Pastrnak’s latest milestone.

    Pastrnak earns a “special” 60th goal in Boston’s historic win

    Given Pastrnak’s career season, it was only fitting that he’d compile his latest accolades in a record-breaking victory.

    From the opening puck drop, the 2014 first-round selection had his eyes set on that 63rd victory. He had another milestone in mind after notching his second of the middle frame.

    Pastrnak’s teammates then had a secondary task in mind. They were all too happy to oblige.

    Heck, Pastrnak nearly accomplished the task earlier but didn’t have the puck luck on his side. He rang iron twice in the opening frame and had another goal wiped away from a goaltender interference call.

    The tough breaks didn’t faze Pastrnak as he fired 10 shots on net. He continued his ascension on the team’s all-time scoring list with his 300th career goal and became the second Bruin to notch 60 in a season.

    “Confidence, creativity and competitiveness. Those three C’s exude from him,” Montgomery told reporters of Pastrnak. “And then you combine that with an attitude of he’s a team-first guy and he cares about and loves being a Bruin.”

    Pastrnak never envisioned playing in any other city. He’ll have more chances to notch 60 in a season after inking his eight-year contract extension.

    But Pastrnak’s first 60-goal campaign will always stand out, especially after accomplishing the feat in a record-setting victory.

    “We obviously knew the stakes,” Pastrnak said to the media. “And it’s definitely special to hit [60] in a game like this.”

    Swayman pays tribute to his mentor.

    Sunday marked two years to the day that former UMaine coach Red Gendron passed away unexpectedly.

    As he prepped for his start in Philadelphia the day after, Swayman heard the unfortunate news regarding Gendron. Upon reflection, Swayman performed with a heavy heart that afternoon.

    With the late Genderon in his thoughts, Swayman returned to Philadelphia for his scheduled start on the second half of the weekend back-to-back. Before receiving congratulatory hugs from his teammates, Swayman pointed his glove hand up into the sky to pay a touching tribute to his mentor.

    “Tonight was a really special one,” an emotional Swayman told TNT’s Jackie Redmond. “Two years ago today, my all-time mentor Red Gendron passed away. I was actually in Philly when it happened, and I think it was pretty scripted today how it worked out.”

    Within the last two years, Swayman progressed from a promising prospect to serving as one-half of the league’s best goaltending tandem.

    But the Alaskan-born product admits he wouldn’t be where he is without Gendron’s guidance on and off the ice.

    “I wouldn’t be here without Red,” Swayman added, “so it’s just a special night.”

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    Tim Rosenthal

    Tim Rosenthal serves as the Managing Editor of Bruins Daily. He started contributing videos to the site in 2010 before fully coming on board during the Bruins' Stanley Cup run in 2011. His bylines over the last decade have been featured on Boston.com, FoxSports.com, College Hockey News, Patch and Inside Hockey. You can follow Tim on Twitter @_TimRosenthal.


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