Sunday, March 25, 2012
Game Seventy Five: Bruins Take Two of Three in Road Trip
Sunday night was the final game of the West Coast three-game road trip for the Bruins. Their final opponent was the Anaheim Ducks.
Rich Peverley, who missed 19 games with a sprained MCL, was back in the lineup for this game. He got some time on the second line with Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand. Daniel Paille was the healthy scratch while Jordan Caron took his place on the fourth line.
The Ducks have had a disappointing season. They are one of the most top-heavy teams in the league, which could also have been their downfall. Without any depth, you will not go very far in the playoffs. They have gone 22-10-5 since January 5th coming into the game. They sit in last place in the Pacific Division despite their recent surge.
Playing in back-to-back games does not always benefit a goaltender, which is why Tim Thomas took a seat for this one and Marty Turco got the start. He opposed Jonas Hiller who won his last three starts against the Bruins.
The first period for the Bruins was a solid one. They put so much heavy pressure on the Ducks that it quickly became difficult for Anaheim to move the puck out of their own zone. Milan Lucic and Jordan Caron each had a great period by playing physical and being persistent in their pursuit of the puck. Turco came up with some big saves as well.
Through much of the first two periods, the Bruins were tight on the defensive end of the ice. The tighter the defense, the more blocked shots they had. The B's finished the game with 15 blocked shots.
Boston got on the board first in the second period on a Zdeno Chara slap shot from the blue line. The Bruins took a two-goal lead when Benoit Pouliot recorded his 13th goal of the season after a crisp pass from Chris Kelly. Anaheim pulled within one when Teemu Selanne notched his 24th goal of the season on the power play.
The Ducks started to turn things around on the B's in the third period. However, a disallowed goal killed any momentum they started to build. Brian Rolston beat Hiller for his seventh goal of the season moments later. Rolston has now recorded 11 points in six games. Lubomir Visnovsky put another tally on the board for Anaheim to cut the lead in half once again.
Turco came up with some big saves in the final minutes to preserve the victory. Boston won this game by a score of 3-2 and end the losing streak against the Ducks. Turco finished with 25 saves on 27 shots.
The Bruins will be back in action Tuesday night at the TD Garden when they take on the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Gold Star: Zdeno Chara...His goal at one end of the ice was big. He defense at the other end of the ice was even bigger.
Black Star: Shawn Thornton...Only 11 shifts and six minutes of ice time will never allow a player to develop confidence, even if it is a fourth-line player.