January, 5 wins, 2 losses.
February, 8 wins, 2 losses.
March, 1 win, 2 losses, 14 games to go. The Boston Bruins played host to the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday evening, looking to quickly break the losing cycle that has plagued them over the past two games. On Sunday night Boston fell in regulation to their conference rival Canadiens 4-3, Tuesday night saw the same score after the Capitals skated back with 4 unanswered goals and an OT win in Washington. A multitude of successful games, closely followed by a slump in play- it’s a tune that Bruins faithful have heard many a season before. The only tune Bruins fans were hearing Thursday evening, the goal horn. Boston has found success against Toronto and won the last 7 (and now 8) consecutive games. In what was expected to be a blood bath style game of old time hockey, both teams played aggressive, yet disciplined.
Looking to avail their most recent losses, the Bruins took to the ice with fire in their hearts, while Toronto looked to continue their hot streak. Anton Khudobin got the nod for another home ice start, while Toronto’s Ben Scrivens was between the pipes. With Bruins legend Milt Schmidt dropping the puck in honor of his 95th birthday, the game was underway.
It’s no wonder Patrice Bergeron earned the NHL 2nd star of the week, in a continued drive to the net he finally managed to get it past the pipes at 19:07 of the 1st period.
Nazem Kadri has been nothing short of an on ice miracle for Toronto, scoring in the opening minutes at 2:32 to be exact, of the second period. The line combination of Bergeron, Marchand and Seguin for Boston has been a key in success. Further proving that thought, Tyler Seguin scoring his 6th of the season at 7:11 of the second with a feed from his line-mates Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron. The chemistry which had eluded them at seasons start has finally found it’s components- it’s undeniable. Yet again, all three players had a multi point night. Despite having the aforementioned players in the limelight, it was David Krejci at 18:03 from Ference and Lucic to put the Bruins up 3-1 heading into the third.
With the Bruins falling apart during the third period earlier in the week, it’s safe to assume that fans were cautiously guarding their excitement at a 3-1 lead to start the third. The period began in Boston’s favor with two power play opportunities almost back to back. In fairly typical fashion, they were unable to capitalize on either chance. Toronto put it at a one goal game when Jay McClement scored at 14:52. Much to the relief of the black and gold faithful, Boston managed to hang on to their 3-2 lead, and sealing the game in Boston’s favor when Tyler Seguin scored on an empty net at 19:45.
Rest is not a term afforded to Boston during the month of March, or any NHL team for that matter. Skating full speed into another daunting week of games-the ‘Broad Street Bullies’ of Philadelphia will put Boston to the test during a matinee match up on Saturday. Closely followed by games in Ottawa on Monday and Pittsburgh on Tuesday before returning to home ice on Thursday to face the Panthers.
Post game video from Dougie Hamilton, Brad Marchand, Tyler Seguin and Patrice Bergeron (above):