Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Game 63: "Oh, Canada" Road Trip Game 5 of 5

The trade deadline quickly passed us this past Monday. As expected, the Bruins did not make any major deals on that day. Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli told the media that he had made the major trades and acquisitions when he dealt for Tomas Kaberle, Rich Peverley, and Chris Kelly. A minor deal was made however when the B's picked up goaltender Anton Khudobin from the Minnesota Wild for two prospects. This trade might not make sense right now, but Chiarelli must have something up his sleeve for the future.

Anyway, there was a hockey game tonight. It was the final game of the six game road trip in which the Bruins are 5-0-0 and outscored their opponents 19-9 in that span. They faced the Ottawa Senators tonight, a team with a record of 21-32-9 for 51 points. That record is good enough for last place in the Eastern Conference. Well, maybe not so good. However, the Senators knocked off the Philadelphia Flyers in a recent game and they have the best record in the Eastern Conference. So, this game was not going to be an easy conclusion to this road trip.

Tuukka Rask got the start for the second consecutive game after having a solid game against Edmonton. His play carried over into this game because he made some great saves in the first period. Even though Ottawa out shot the Bruins 10-6, the B's defense was the story of the period. Dennis Seidenberg and Adam McQuaid performed at a high level by making key passes to set up scoring chances. After it was all set and done, the first period ended in a scoreless tie.

We witnessed deja vu in the second period as the fans were treated to some old time hockey. The defense and the goalies were unbelievable as shot after shot was followed by save after save. Boston did go on the power play in which they just took liberties at firing off shots like there was no tomorrow. Zdeno Chara and Tomas Kaberle anchored the power play setting up some scoring chances. but Ottawa goaltender Craig Anderson was able to keep the teams even through two.

Within the first two minutes of the third period, Nathan Horton scored his 18th of the season to put the Bruins on top 1-0. Brad Marchand and Adam McQuaid has the assists. To go a bit off topic, Mcquaid had one of his best games as a professional tonight. He was hustling to the puck, defending the blue line, and kept attacking players away from Tuukka Rask. Overall, the entire Bruins defense was on top of their game throughout this road trip. After killing a late penalty and fighting off the extra attacker in the final minute, Boston held on to win 1-0.

Gold Star: Tuukka Rask (33 saves on 33 shots, 0 goals allowed, 1.000 save percentage)..he had a solid game overall and we should be seeing him splitting time with Tim Thomas the rest of the season.
Black Star: Brad Marchand...he failed to utilize his speed tonight. He put the Bruins on the penalty kill when he got sent to the penalty box for holding. In that situation, he should have used his speed to get to the puck. He almost cost us the game.

The Bruins return home on Thursday to take on the Tampa Bay Lightning in a game that will determine who will take over second place in the Eastern Conference. One last thought, the Bruins finished this six game road trip 6-0-0. The last time they did that was during the 1971-1972 season, the last year that they won the Stanley Cup.......

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