The Bruins continued their win streak Monday night, beating down on the New York Islanders 6-2. This game saw Tyler Seguin notch his team leading 8th goal of the season, as well as Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton getting involved on the scoring parade. Tuukka Rask was in net for the Bruins, starting his 4th game of the season. He had lost his previous 3 games with just a 2.46 Goals Against Average, but the Bruins only scored 3 goals in front of him. Rask saw the Bruins score 6 goals in front of him in this game, and he was stellar as well. Rask allowed 2 goals on 26 shots, and was strong all night in net for the Bruins. Danielle Paille, who received a slapshot to the face Monday night, will be taken to a face specialist to examine the extent of his damage and what can be done to heal him. Reports are that the puck hit his nose, but nothing further has been released.
The Bruins got things started right away, with a turnover next to the Islander net. Caron picked off a bad pass, and threw the puck on net. Isle goaltender Evgeni Nabokov wasn’t expecting the shot, as he just stood there when the puck hit his skate and hung in the crease. Benoit Pouliot came streaking to the goal, and he stuffed in the puck 5-hole on the unsuspecting Nabokav. Boston was up 1-0 just 1:32 into the game. Off the ensuing face-off, Matt Martin decided to challenge McQuaid to a fight a center ice. McQuaid dominated the fight, using his size and strength to his advantage. Martin clearly wanted to spark his team after giving up a bad goal, and both players would receive 5 minute majors for fighting at 1:35. The Islanders brought the attack right back to the Bruins after the fight. Staos had the puck at the far point, and fired a shot on net. Matt Molsoun tipped it in front and there was nothing Rask could do to stop the puck. New York had tied the game at 1, 5:52 into the game. The Bruins came right back with a great shift by the Bergeron line. Seguin skated behind the Isle net to pick up a loose puck, centered a pass for Joe Corvo, but his one-timer was knocked down by Nabakov. A juicy rebound came out, but was picked up and cleared by the Isle. The Bergeron line was creating more trouble, with Seguin and Bergeron working the puck near circle. Screening in front of the net was Brad Marchand, who was pushed over by Travis Hamonic. That would result in a 2 minute minor for cross-checking at 12:11, and the suddenly hot Bruins powerplay had a chance to regain the lead. Seguin had a drive blocked down and away from Nabokov Marchand picked up the loose puck, and with his back facing the goal he just missed a backhand shot wide. After a face-off win, Kreci sent the puck around the net to Chara at the far point. His point shot was stopped by Nabakov, but the rebound came out to Horton in the far slot. Horton settled the puck, and beat Nabakov low glove side. Boston was back on top 2-1 after the powerplay goal at 13:38. Boston didn’t let up, as the Bergeron line came back out. Bergeron took the puck down the near boards, and sent it around the net. Marchand went to the far corner to pick the puck up, and kicked it to Bergeron behind the net. Bergeron centered a pass for Seguin in the center slot, and he roofed the puck into the back of the net. Boston was up 3-1 now, just 28 seconds after Horton’s powerplay goal. That was enough for Islander head coach Jack Capuono. He pulled goaltender Evgeni Nabakov for Al Montoya. The Islanders would have a great chance to get back into this game, when Chris Kelly would be called for slashing at 14:35. The Islanders managed just 2 shots on goal, as the Bruins killed off the penalty with ease. The Islanders stayed resilient, with a great interception by Garabner. Grabner deflected a pass by Johnny Boychuk out of midair, and passed the puck to John Tavarese. Traverse faked the shot, and passed back across ice to Grabner, who put the puck in the back of the net. It was a 3-2 game at 18:36. The 1st period would come to a close, with the Bruins up 3-2.
As the 2nd period started, Boston would dump the puck into the offensive zone. Al Montoya just caught an edge and hit the ice in his own crease. Seidenberg flew to the nearboards and fired a one-timer on the wide-open net. Somehow though, Montoya got his glove up and made the save laying on his side. The Bruins would get another chance moments later when Milan Lucic had 1-on-2 into the Islanders zone. Lucic set the edge, and barreled in far side protecting the puck from the defenders, but his backhand shot never made it on net. With the puck behind the net Lucic battled it out with . Lucic pushed over, and that would be enough for a roughing minor at 5:32. Again the Bruins penalty kill stifled the hot Islanders powerplay. They were back to 5-on-5 hockey, but the Bruins had to do something to get momentum back on their side. The Islanders were out shooting them 7-3 at the midway point. Marchand picked a pass off neutral zone, and had a semi-breakaway in between 2 defenders. He fired a shot high slot, and Montoya just got the glove on it. The puck deflected up and over him though, and he dove back to gather the puck. Marchand jumped up to jam the puck in, but came in and blocked off the far post, keeping the Bruins off the board. Marchand came back with a burst of speed off the rush. He drove up the near boards, centered a pass for Seguin far slot, and Seguin just missed a wide open net on the tip in off the side of the goal. The Islanders brought the puck back up the ice and into the Boston corner. Zdeno Chara got his stick around, and when he turned around he ran into the stick. It would be a hooking call against Chara at 14:28. The Islanders were very effective this time around on the powerplay, moving the puck around the Boston zone. Tuukka Rask was strong in net though, denying the Islanders a powerplay goal. Then the offenses started coming alive, as both teams had great scoring chances. But Montoya and Rask were very impressive in net, stopping chance after chance against them. The 2nd period would come to a close, and the Bruins maintained their slim 3-2 lead.
The 3rd period started with a bit of a scare for the Bruins, not on the scoreboard, but on their roster. Danielle Paille caught a slapshot up high on his face, and he hit the ice quickly. Play was stopped immediately, and Bruins trainer John Del Negro was on the ice to attend to him. Paille was taken to the dressing room, under his own power, but he was bleeding. The Bruins didn’t lose a step though, with Seidenberg making a good play defensively to get the puck out of the Boston zone. Horton and Lucic skated behind the Islanders defense, and had a de facto 2-on-0. Horton skated into the near slot, deked, and passed across to Milan Lucic who tipped the puck into the net. Boston had the important 2 goal lead, now up 4-2 at 4:34. The Bruins came back with a chance set up along the point. Milan Lucic battled along the sideboards, and won the puck back to Corvo, who fired a shot near point that Montoya stopped. The rebound came right to Nathan Horton though, who just jammed the puck in from the far slot. Boston was up now 5-2 just 49 seconds later. The Bergeron line followed that up with a chance of their own. Marchand and Seguin came flying up ice with a 2-on-2. Marchand made a cross-ice pass, but Seguin just missed another tip-in. With Lucic and Adam McDonald battling in the corner for a loose puck, Lucic would lose his edge and inadvertently trip down McDonald. That would put the Bruins back on the penalty kill at 13:05 for tripping. The Islanders again were moving the puck very well on the powerplay. But the Bruins skaters were in the right places at the right times, not allowing a shot to get through to Rask during the penalty kill. They were back to 5-on-5 with less than 5 minutes remaining in the game. The Islanders would make a daring move, deciding to pull their goaltender with under 3 minutes to play. David Kreci made sure it backfired on the Isle, as he buried an empty net goal at 17:12. The Bruins would skate off with their 3rd win in a row, and another convincing one at that, beating the New York Islanders 6-2.
What another great game by the Bruins. They dominated in every facet of this game, and it’s good to finally see guys like Horton and Lucic bury the puck in the net. Tyler Seguin continues his points streak, now scoring 6 points in the last 4 games. Seguin leads the team with 8 goals, is 3rd in assists with 7, and that gives him the most points on the team with 15. Seguin is really coming into his own early in this season, and as long as he can continue this superb play, he will be a rock on this Bruins franchise for years to come. Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton have also gotten of the snide as of late. With these 2 players contributing for the Bruins, you can obviously see that they have been scoring a lot more goals as a team in their last 3 games. If the Bruins are to have any success going forward, those 2 guys have to keep finding the back of the net. The 1 guy who is surprising me though is David Kreci. Besides his empty net goal in this game, he only has 3 goals and 4 assists for 7 points in 10 games, and is -2. This guy led the Bruins in scoring last year, so he will need to start making better decisions with the puck if the Bruins offense is going to keep up this kind of output with any consistency. The Bruins won’t play again until Thursday night, when they play the worst team in the league the last 2 years running, the Edmonton Oilers. If Boston can keep this offensive outburst going, I see them easily running away with this game. The Oilers have a very young, and very highly skilled offensive team. So the Bruins will have to be sharp on defense if they want to keep this short winning streak alive.