On Thursday night, the Bruins were competing in something much more than just a regular season game. They were in action searching for a playoff birth. A win Thursday against the Washington Capitals would accomplish that task.
For the Capitals, this game was in fact the opposite. After a tough loss to the Buffalo Sabres, the Caps are now out of the playoff structure. They were coming into this one with everything to lose, so fighting for their postseason lives was to be expected.
Dennis Seidenberg was out for this game due to an infected laceration on his leg and was replaced by Joe Corvo. Tim Thomas got the start in net. He has now appeared in 17 out of the last 18 games for Boston.
The Bruins had a slow start to the game. The fact that they were facing a goaltender who had not played in 13 straight games should have been an eye opener. Maybe shoot the puck? Only seven total shots on goal in the first 20 minutes. Tomas Vokoun, the Caps' netminder who missed those 13 games with a groin injury, left the game towards the end of the first period as he appeared to aggravate his injury.
With six minutes remaining in the opening period, Adam McQuaid was blindsided from behind by Jason Chimera. McQuaid went head first into the boards and had to be helped off the ice. Chimera received a five minute major penalty for charging and a game misconduct. The B's failed to capitalize on the ensuing power play.
The speed of the game certainly picked up in the second period. Both teams rung the post on a couple of occasions. The teams were also exchanging hits with one another. A pretty decent hockey game through two, but it remained scoreless.
The third period was a whole new game compared to how the rest of the contest was played. The Capitals grabbed two goals early on. Dennis Wideman and Marcus Johansson had the tallies for Washington. Alexander Ovechkin had an assist on both goals.
The Garden erupted when the B's tied the game with two goals of their own. David Krejci and Andrew Ference recorded the goals for the Black and Gold. Thomas finished regulation with 21 saves on 23 shots. The game eventually went through a scoreless overtime and into a shootout.
The Caps scored three goals in the shootout as it went four rounds. Washington won this game by a score of 3-2. The Bruins still acquire a point from this one.
The Bruins' next game will be Saturday afternoon against the New York Islanders.
Gold Star: David Krejci (1 goal, 1 assist, plus-1 rating)...His tip in front and his steal gave the Bruins the chance to win the game in overtime. They fell just short.
Black Star: Andrew Ference...Even though he had a goal, he had a turnover that led to a goal. People should not forget too easily.