By now, we all know the Marc Savard story since March 7th. With 18:45 remaining in the first period, Savvy came over the boards to take a faceoff and was loudly greeted by the 17,565 Bruins fans in attendance. Said Savard afterwards, “To be honest, when I got out there, there was a little water in my eyes at first. It was a nice ovation. I’ve loved playing here and that’s why I wanted to stay here. The crowd treated me great.”
So on his first game after almost two months of not playing, Savvy came back today and his line looked like this:
1 Goal, 0 Assists, 1 Point, +1, 15:15 Time on Ice with 2 Shots on Goal
That second shot came with 6:08 remaining overtime and gave the Bruins a leg up over the Philadelphia Flyers in the second round of the playoffs.
While both teams had time off since their series wins, it was the Bruins who started fast, then held on for dear life before Savard’s heroics sent the full house home in a good mood. In the first period, Steve Begin scored his first post season goal of his career to open the series scoring followed by a Patrice Bergeron goal on a rebound from a Dennis Wideman point shot.
The Flyers had been off since April 22 and it showed in that opening frame. They didn’t move the puck well and their forecheck was non existant. Many times when the puck was in the Bruins end, the Bruins would have an easy out as the Flyers were only bringing one forechecker into the zone. Afterwards, Danile Briere spoke about the slow start “I don’t think we were moving our legs really well. In the first period, we were dumping pucks, and we were slow getting there or if one guy got there, they would just move into the next defenseman and our second guy was late. It was just about getting back into the game, and getting our legs moving a little better.”
The Flyers got things rolling in the second period. They improved their forecheck and scored a pair of goals to get back into the game. First it was Ryan Parent and then a weak one from Chris Pronger gettting them back into the game setting up a tense third period. The Pronger goal was a power play goal – the first power play goal allowed by the Bruins this post season. In particular, Rask was disappointed at himself on the Pronger goal, “From the way he was coming from, he made a good shot, but I think I could have that.”
After two, the Flyers played so well in the second but it was the Bruins holding a 3-2 lead. It was a lead that looked like at anytime the Flyers would just take control. Then David Krejci abused Boucher in the slot with a series of fakes to open the lead back up to two goals at 4-2. The Bruins couldn’t hold the lead and goals by Mike Richards and Daniel Briere just 4:01 apart sent the game into overtime. When asked about the tieing goal, Briere said, “It is one of those plays that usually you don’t want to loose the puck in the neutral zone like that but late in the game I knew it was a one on two and my teammates were going to change. I just tried to go for it.”
So it was onto overtime and in the first minute, Boucher made stops that kept the Flyers alive and a couple were just over the top unbelievble. Then it got even better. He stopped Michael Ryder point blank with a glove save that had all of Boston looking to the rafters.
Tuuka Rask stopped Daniel Carcillo on a breakaway in OT setting up the Savard heroics. With the puck in the Flyer zone (as it was for most of the OT) it was Dennis Wideman pinching on the right wing boards. He got his stick slashed out of his hands by James van Riemsdyk but the puck kicked over to Marc Savard who one timed his second shot of the day over Boucher’s shoulder sending the crowd into an all out frenzy.
Game two is Monday night. The Bruins will have to play better for 60 minutes for them to hold this new found home ice. Marco Sturm was hurt on the first shift of the game and Claude Julien had to juggle his forwards all afternoon. Do we see Shawn Thornton on Monday now?
Please see Joshua Bartle’s views of today’s game and of the series here.
See you all on Monday…Go B’s!
About the Author
Written by Jim Mulligan