Saturday, April 5, 2014

Game 78: Battling For The Top Spot

Please hold your breaths, fellow fans of the Boston Bruins. Your team is winless in the month of April. 

Yes, the B's only lost one game in regulation during March, and they have not put their best effort forward so far this month. However, we are only two games into April. We also have to keep in mind that the team only has five games remaining on the schedule, Saturday's game included. 

As quoted from B's head coach Claude Julien, the team is going to start resting some of its players from this point forward. It is important to clinch the Eastern Conference's number one seed (which is the only thing they are playing for at this point), but it is crucial to have a full compliment of players come playoff time. That is the ultimate goal. 

Anyway, Boston returned home for a matinee game against the Philadelphia Flyers. The Bruins took the first two meetings earlier in the year-both games took place in Philly. They had the chance to sweep the season series on home ice. On a somewhat related topic, the Bruins only have one remaining home game left in 2013-14 campaign after this one. 

For the Flyers, they are still battling and competing within their division for positioning in the postseason. With that being said, we should have expected a full lineup from the "Broad Street Bullies," accompanied by heavy hitting and an array of scoring chances.

Prior to the game, NESN announced that Reilly Smith was the recipient of the "Seventh Player Award" for performing above and beyond expectations this season. Although he has had a drop off in production as of late, he is still deserving of this award.

Tuukka Rask got the start in goal for the Bruins. Jarome Iginla and Kevan Miller were scratched from the lineup, but Carl Soderberg made his return after missing the last game to become a father. Congrats, Soddy! 

The Flyers kept things interesting early on, but the B's exploded in the third period to pull away. Every line was rolling on this day, led by the top line (Milan Lucic-David Krejci-Loui Eriksson) which combined for nine total points. They secured the 5-2 victory, and now will be the number one seed in the Eastern Conference. 

The Bruins will play their next game on Tuesday night against the Minnesota Wild.

Gold Star: Loui Eriksson (four assists)...It turns out that he can play on any line and produce. When this guy is healthy, he is a dangerous player. 

Black Star: Gregory Campbell...He did not have much of an impact in this one, but his presence in the lineup will be immense come playoff time.

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