Stop me if you’ve heard all this before. When the Boston Bruins make a mistake, it always seems to end up in their net. Tonight it was no different. Just forty nine seconds into the contest, Steven Stamkos tapped home a pass from Steven Downie and the offensively challenged Bruins were skating uphill. There was some question about the goal as it looked like Stamkos may have stepped offsides on the play. The Bruin defense must have thought so as well as they sagged back towards their net and allowed Stamkos to get behind them.
With less than two minutes remaining in the first period, Dennis Seidenberg’s center ice dump in was intercepted and led directly to Martin St. Louis’s empty net tap in. Seidenberg made the right play by by lifting the puck on the dump in but it wasn’t high or hard enough and was knocked down leading to the odd man rush back the other way.
Tuukka Rask and Johnny Boychuk get crossed up behind the net and in the crease on the Bolt’s third goal. This goal came seconds after Shawn Thornton was stopped cold in the slot.
A lousy offensive penalty leads to Stamkos second goal of the game. It reminded me of how Brett Hull scored goals back during his playing days. He lingered along the wall until a soft zone opened up. He one timed a pass from Kurtis Foster that Rask never saw. While Blake Wheeler did have position in the offensive zone, he stopped skating and the Tampa defender had no where to go.
The way I’m describing things, you’d think that Tampa came in tonight and thumped the B’s but that’s not the case. The Bruins played a good game but as it’s been all season long, they just couldn’t score enough goals. They outshot Tampa 50-18 for the night. They played with an edge that they’ve had since they were booed off the ice last week against the Penguins. Steve Begin was a force most of the night. He crashed the net, took the body practically every shift and was a pest all night long.
The Krejci line was solid all night. David Krejci, in particular, looked like the guy we saw all last year. He controlled the puck and distributed to his linemates with ease all night.
So with tonight’s loss, the out of town action was the topic of conversation. That all went bad too. The two teams the Bruins are chasing, Montreal and Philadelphia both won. The one team the Bruins want to lose every night because we want a lottery pick, Toronto – wins. Then the Rangers win combined with the Tampa win, it all added up to a bad night for the black and gold.
Next up the Calgary Flames come to town on Saturday afternoon. They lost to the Islanders tonight and are sitting in the 9th spot in the west. That game won’t be a cupcake at all for the Bruins.
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Written by Jim Mulligan