The Boston Bruins have been ravaged by injuries and the flu bug, but that has not stopped them from becoming the second best team in the Eastern Conference and the top team in the Atlantic Division.
Despite their less-than-stellar roster, they have been on a tear over the last two weeks. They went into their Canadian road trip behind the Montreal Canadiens. When it was all set and done, they overtook their rival and built a comfortable lead.
Speaking of that road trip, they took six out of a possible eight points with their only loss coming at the hands of the Vancouver Canucks towards the back end of the roadie. That is a tough city to play in because the fans take their hockey seriously. Why don't you ask Milan Lucic just how serious they take it?
Anyway, the B's were back at home on Tuesday night against the Calgary Flames. They defeated the Flames last week in Calgary, so let's see if they can have similar luck at the TD Garden.
Prior to the game, it was announced that Craig Cunningham was recalled from Providence on an emergency basis. This came as a result of the news regarding Daniel Paille. He has been suffering from concussion-like symptoms and is out indefinitely. Man, a break cannot be caught with this team lately.
In the first period of Tuesday's game, both sides played a very heavy style of hockey. After a scoreless opening 20 minutes, that trend continued into the second period. The hits came in bunches from Calgary, but Boston produced the better scoring chances.
After several stoppages that killed the B's momentum, they finally capitalized on the power play when Zdeno Chara blasted home his eighth goal of the season. It was somewhat poetic justice that "Big Z" recorded the goal because he was the recipient of a high stick that was not called. Ironically, the power play was a result of a high-sticking penalty.
In the third period, the Flames did come on strong with some pressure. The Bruins did bend, but they did not break even though they struggled in the neutral zone during the last 20 minutes. At the end of the night, it was Boston standing tall. Chara recorded his second goal of the game to seal the 2-0 victory for the Bruins.
Both David Krejci and Jarome Iginla had multi-point games on this night while Tuukka Rask recorded his third shutout of the season, stopping all 21 shots he faced. The Flames just cannot score a goal in Boston.
The Bruins will be back on the road for a Thursday night game against the Buffalo Sabres.
Gold Star: Zdeno Chara...He had a pretty solid game in the defensive zone. He was dishing out body contact and did not produce any significant turnovers. Oh yes, recording a pair of power play goals helps too.
Black Star: Brad Marchand...He may have straightened up his play, but he still does not seem to understand how to play the game correctly. Please get the memo....no more hits from behind. Something is going on.