A lot has happened within the Boston Bruins' organization over the last several days.
To start, rookie David Pastrnak emerged with a breakout performance over the Philadelphia Flyers this past Saturday afternoon. His two-goal outing proved to be the difference in the contest. For a team that needs offense, it will be hard to send him back down to Providence. We still have some time before the decision arises.
Also, Patrice Bergeron was selected to his first All-Star game. As the only B's representative during the All-Star weekend, Bergy leads the team in assists (21) and points (31). He will enjoy a great weekend over in Columbus and represent Boston with class.
Lastly, and more importantly, the Bruins are on a three-game winning streak. They wanted to continue that trend with the complete team that they finally have. They began a three-game homestand on Tuesday night against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
There is a reason why the Lightning are the best team in the Eastern Conference: prolific offense. Steven Stamkos, Nikita Kucherov, and Tyler Johnson--who did not skate in this game--are all playing at a filthy level (in a good way), and this was shaping up to be a great first meeting of the season between these two teams. This game was going to be special.
The team announced before the game that they had sent Seth Griffith back down to Providence and that Simon Gagne will not return to the team this year due to personal reasons.
Tuukka Rask got the start in net for the B's as he opposed Ben Bishop. Just like the goaltender, the rest of the lineup remained the same for the Black and Gold.
In the first period, the Bruins outworked the Bolts by producing more of the scoring chances. However, the teams managed to record only one goal each despite the lopsided play in the neutral zone. Naturally, Stamkos was the culprit for the Lightning. Brad Marchand was the goal scorer for the Bruins, which was poetic justice after being called for a goaltender interference penalty just minutes prior.
The second period was all about killing penalties for the Bruins. In what looked like a daunting task, Boston shut down the most potent offense in the league...and they did it in short-handed fashion multiple times. That momentum shifted in the B's favor over the last 30 minutes of the game as they beat Bishop for three unanswered goals--two of those goals were scored by Pastrnak, which brings his goal total to four in two games.
In the third period, the teams started to play with an edge and ugly attitude. Several minor penalties were dished out to both sides for various extra-curricular antics. Stamkos, when the hot heads settled, pulled the Lightning within one late in the final 20 minutes. It would not matter on this night. The Bruins held on for the 4-3 victory and extended their winning streak to four games. #climbingthestandings
The Bruins will continue their grueling week on Thursday night when they host the New York Rangers.
Gold Star: David Pastrnak...With two goals, a plus-four rating, and seven shots on goal, the kid needs to stay with the team. The Bruins have not had a spark like this all season.
Black Star: Daniel Paille...What a disappointing season he has had thus far. His minus-two rating was tied for worst on the team in this one.
Bergeron Reacts to First All-Star Game Selection
Game Forty-Four Box Score