Saturday, April 20, 2013

Game 43: At Least There Was No Third Period Lead To Blow This Time

After what was an emotional week for the city of Boston, it is time to leave all of that behind and move on. The best way to do that is focus on what is happening with the Boston Bruins.

The B's have dropped three games in a row, but they have clinched their birth in the playoffs. It is a good thing that the Montreal Canadiens are in a bit of a slump themselves. That has allowed the Bruins to contend for the top spot in the division.

Boston took on the Pittsburgh Penguins Saturday afternoon at the TD Garden. This game was originally supposed to be held on Friday night, but another postponement led to a matinee matchup with the best team in the Eastern Conference. 

Would the fans in attendance be kind or cruel to Jarome Iginla? With Sidney Crosby out of the lineup, Bruins fans needed someone to target. Aside from that, the Bruins were looking to get their first win of the season against the Pens. 

B's head coach Claude Julien continued to give some of his players much needed rest. In this case, Milan Lucic sat this one out for both rest and to wake him up. This opened up the door for Carl Soderberg to make his Bruins debut. Tuukka Rask was back between the pipes in this game as well. Matt Bartkowski was in the lineup again in place of Dougie Hamilton.

In a game that featured some chippy play (notably and typically from Matt Cooke) and numerous whistles, the Penguins knocked off the Bruins by a score of 3-2 to sweep the season series. Jussi Jokinen, Iginla, and Kris Letang had the goals for Pittsburgh, two of which were power play goals. 

The Bruins had goals from Brad Marchand and Tyler Seguin. They recorded 40 shots on Pens goaltender Tomas Vokoun, but they could not put the puck in the net anymore than they did. When you add that along with getting whistled for some costly penalties, those are the ingredients for a tough loss.

Iginla actually dropped the gloves with Nathan Horton in this game. Horton appeared to have injured his hand during the scrap and he did not return. His condition is not yet known for the next game, but it should not be a surprise if he is held out of the lineup regardless of how serious the injury turns out to be.

Up next on the Bruins schedule will be the Florida Panthers. That game will be played on Sunday afternoon. 

Gold Star: Brad Marchand...It is hard to argue with a power play goal and getting under the skin of the opponent. That is exactly what he did in this one.

Black Star: Carl Soderberg...He surely will improve, but it is always a tough adjustment when you play in your first NHL game. 

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