Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Game Seventy Six: Avenged

The Bruins suffered arguably their worst loss of the season two weeks ago against the Tampa Bay Lightning. On Tuesday night, they looked to get some retribution against that very same team.

Michigan State defenseman Torey Krug joined the Bruins on Monday and participated in his first team skate Tuesday morning. The 5-foot-9 blue liner signed a three-year entry level contract on Sunday. He went undrafted, allowing him to choose the team he can play with for the rest of this season. He will not be eligible for the playoffs, but look for him to see some ice time towards the end of the season.

As for Tuesday's game, the Bruins had the opportunity to increase their lead in the Northeast Division. Prior to puck drop, Zdeno Chara was honored at the TD Garden for recently playing in his 1,000th NHL game. Great guy. Even better player.

In the first period, the Lightning got on the board first. Steven Stamkos recorded his 54th goal of the season after chasing down a loose puck and blasting it past Tim Thomas. Later on in the period, Shawn Thornton tied the game up with his 5th of the season. He almost had a second goal on a breakaway, but scoring two in a game seemed like a daunting task for him.

The 1-3-1 defense used by the Bolts in this one proved to be effective early on. However, both teams seemed to be stumbling around on the ice. Passes were not tight and the ice began to bulk up. A very sloppy opening 20 minutes.

The action seemed to quiet down a little bit in the second period. The scoring chances were at a minimum, but the physicality was present. The Bruins used their toughness to pursue the net and move the puck. At the other end of the ice, the B's held the Lightning to only three shots in the period. Dennis Seidenberg recorded a four-on-four goal on assists from Chara and David Krejci in what was the lone goal in the second period.

Tyler Seguin got whistled for a tripping penalty towards the end of the second, setting up a power play opportunity for Tampa Bay to start the third. Boston did a solid job to kill it off by not allowing good scoring chances and winning face-offs. They were not so successful later in the third period when Stamkos blasted a power play goal (2nd goal of the game) past Thomas to tie the game at two.

From then on, it was all Boston. Once the Bruins started to dish out some hits they started to control possession. Benoit Pouliot, Brad Marchand, and Rich Peverley each had a goal in the final 20 minutes. The Lightning had two good chances but Thomas kept the puck out of the net. The Bruins won this game by a score of 5-2.

The B's next game will be Thursday night against the Washington Capitals.

Gold Star: Zdeno Chara (3 assists, plus-2 rating, 6 shots on goal)...A three-point game on the night he was honored for playing 1,000 games. How fitting?

Black Star: Tyler Seguin...He had a couple of costly penalties in this one. Also, did it not seem that he was all over the ice? Just keep it simple.

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