It was not the best game the Boston Bruins have played this season, but they got the job done. They defeated the Columbus Blue Jackets by a score of 2-1 in a shootout Thursday night. They have now won seven straight games and went 5-0 during their five game home stand, pushing them up into the top ten teams in the Eastern Conference.
Daniel Paille made his return to the line-up for this game. He had to wear a full face cage to protect his face from the aftermath of getting hit in the face with a slap shot.
Both teams had trouble finding their rhythm. The Blue Jackets had more shots and better opportunities during the first half of the game. Columbus out-shot Boston 31-27 to finish the game and dominated the face-off dot (30-24). All that matters is the final score.
The Blue Jackets got on the board first when they scored a power play goal that was tipped in by Derek Mackenzie. The Bruins evened the score at one with an ugly goal, a goal just as ugly as their opposition's goal. Adam McQuaid, who was paired up with Zdeno Chara due to Johnny Boychuk's absence, blasted the puck from the top of the blue line and into the goal.
Shawn Thornton dropped the gloves with Jared Boll for a good bout. That seemed to put a charge into the Columbus offense as they kept firing shots on net left and right.
Tuukka Rask and Curtis Sanford kept the score close in the third period by making some crucial saves on shots that could have easily gone in. The game went into overtime where the Bruins failed to capitalize on a power play opportunity. The Bruins had to kill off a Columbus power play as the overtime expired.
Rich Peverley and David Krejci had the shootout goals for the B's and the only Blue Jackets shootout goal was scored by Mark Letestu. Rask finished the night with a dominant performance, hopefully silencing all of the trade rumors that have been floating his way lately. The Bruins will hit the road for a Saturday night game against the New York Islanders.
Gold Star: Tuukka Rask (30 saves on 31 shots, 1 goal allowed, .968 save percentage).
Black Star: Steven Kampfer...He had some key turnovers that could have easily turned into goals by Columbus. Rask and Andrew Ference were able to bail him out. You noticed that his minutes began to decrease as the game went along.