Bruins, with a Late Comeback, Fall to the Capitals in 4th Round of Shootout

Tyler Seguin scores against Michal Neuvirth during the shootout (3/29/12)

The Bruins' Tyler Seguin scores against Michal Neuvirth during the shootout.

Last night, the Bruins sought more revenge, this time against the Capitals.  While there were some big plays, the first 45 minutes or so were pretty uneventful, for the most part.  The Bruins got more good scoring chances and offensive work, but the Capitals were painfully patient and in the last period it finally paid of for them as they scored a pair of goals in a minute and 55 seconds.  Then, with only three minutes left, it seemed as though we were about to be shutout, but the crowd kept believing in them and started chanting loudly.  This pumped up the Bruins and they kicked it up to full throttle..  They ended up scoring two goals in a minute and 54 seconds!  That’s right, we did it one second faster than them!  Booyah, bitches!

So it went to overtime and the Bruins kept up the good rhythm they had started on in the third period.  They got some good chances and it’s too bad overtime is only five minutes because just a few more and I think we would’ve scored.  Nobody scored, so it went to a shootout.  It was tough to watch in the first round when the Capitals’ Matt Hendricks skated in fast, then did a fake stop.. Tim Thomas was either faked out or lost his balance, but he ended up on his back, giving an easy goal to Hendricks.  It was somewhat redeemed by Tyler Seguin and Patrice Bergeron’s nice goals, as well as Thomas’ nice saves on Alex Ovechkin (one of the best scorers in the league).  After three rounds, it was tied at two, so from there they go one round at a time.  They only need one more as Rich Peverley couldn’t score for us, then Brooks Laich did and won it for them with an admittedly nice shot that very few goalies would’ve stopped.

So we didn’t get the two points we needed in the standings to secure a spot in the playoffs, but we did get one for being tied at the end of regulation.. so we only need one more in the last five games of the regular season.  We are now six points ahead of the Senators in our division, with the same number of games left.  So we should be able to win the division, giving  us a top spot in the conference and home ice advantage in the playoffs.

As for how we’re looking..  Well, in the first two periods we had some trouble getting good offensive stands.  We did have some good chances, but we always do.  It wasn’t until later in the game that they really started getting into true Bruins hockey.. they started getting good offensive zone time.. and more physical.  We played well from then on.  So, we’re looking pretty good.

The only major issues are all the players that are out with injuries.. They’re all really important to the team and our success.  Tuukka Rask is a nasty goalie, Nathan Horton is a great forward, and Dennis Seidenberg is huge for us on defense.  Luckily, Seidenberg will be back soon.. he’s day-to-day with an infected cut.  But just as they get ready to come back, another one goes down.. towards the end of the first period, the Capitals’ Jason Chimera accelerated all the way from the bench to hit Adam McQuaid at the end boards.. McQuaid tried to cut back the other way just as Chimera got there and ended up getting hit as he was facing the boards.. he slammed into them face first and went down holding his head.  He’s had neck injuries and concussions, so this was very scary.  Fortunately, he didn’t aggravate those past injuries.. but he did end up having his eye swollen shut.  He won’t be going to New York with the team this weekend to play the Islanders and the Rangers.  Hey, it could be worse.. and the Bruins are playing well overall right now, so just keep believing!

My Highlights/Rants

This section is where I put my notes from the game, with the plays that I felt were worth highlighting and ranting about.  This is basically my version of a game recap, intended for those who would like to read one that tells more than just what happened on paper.  So, if you just want a summarization and my thoughts on what the game means for the Bruins, just read the section above and the “Final Thoughts/Notes” section near the bottom.  Following this section are some videos and links…

1st Period
-It starts with immediate desperation by the Capitals, getting the first offensive stand of the game.. but it was short and followed by some good work and chances for us.
-4 mins in, Ovechkin makes a neutral zone steal and gets a short breakaway.. nice shot.. nice save by Tim Thomas.
-7.5 mins in, some good work lead to a nice shot by Zdeno Chara, then Brad Marchand shoots the rebound just over the top near corner.
-Almost halfway through, Thomas makes a nice save, being slightly screened.
-12 mins in, Milan Lucic with a nice chance off a loose puck, then off the rebound.. Vokoun not looking too sharp.  We go on to start getting some good offense going.
-14 mins in, Chimera accelerated all the way from the neutral zone to go in and put a huge hit on McQuaid, knocking him face first into the boards hard!  McQuaid holds his head and goes to the locker room.  So Chimera gets a 5 minute major penalty for boarding (it was later changed to charging) and a game misconduct (ejected from the game).  He knew what he was doing, and that McQuaid has had past neck/head injuries, including concussions.. plus he took 14 hard strides to accelerate into him.  On the way to the locker room, Chimera gets cussed out by a Bruins fan.. and the fan gets kicked out.. are you serious? ..where’s the justice?
-On the power play:
–We start off with some good work and a nice chance by the Marchand-Bergeron-Seguin line.
–Then the Capitals keep us from getting any offense going for a couple of minutes.
–Then Bergeron with a big hit followed by some good offensive work.
–Then Chara with a big on-timer and Lucic gets hit with it and skates off in pain.
–Then some more good work and nice shots.
–Then Vokoun skates off.. it looks like he aggravated his recent groin injury.
–The Capitals kill of the penalty
-The period ends tied 0-0.
-We tied this season’s league record for fewest shots on goal against us (2) in a single period.  We had 7.

2nd Period
-1.5 mins in, Thomas dives out of his crease to make a save and causes Corvo to go flying.
-(We just got word that McQuaid will not return tonight)
-5 mins in, the Capitals get some good offense and Thomas makes a nice save.
-In the next few minutes, the Capitals continue to do some good work and get good chances.. we only get a few, though we did have some nice plays.
-Almost nine minutes in, Zanon with a great shot that hits post.. Bergeron almost knocks it in.. then we do some more good work.
-Soon after, Ovechkin gets a nice break, but Chara with some nice work to stop him and take the puck and start a counter-offensive.
-Then the 17,565 people in the audience start chanting “Let’s Go Bruins” loudly and the team starts to pick it up.
-Then Krejci gets a high-sticking penalty.
-On the penalty kill:
–In the first minute, we defend well, then Marchand almost gets a breakaway.
–Then we keep them from getting back in our end..  Kelly and Zanon both hit Ovechkin as he tries to come back in.. we kill it off.
-15 mins in, we’ve had some good offense, then Lucic puts a big hit on Cody Eakin as revenge for his hit on Lucic near the start of the game.
-16 mins in, Thornton with a nice pass ahead leading to a good shot by Campbell.  At this point, 36 minutes into the game, the Capitals only have 6 shots on goal.
-18 mins in, the Capitals get an offensive stand and Thomas makes a couple of nice saves.  Both teams also start getting more physical.
-The period ends, still tied 0-0.
-We’ve outshot them 15-9 so far.
-We lead the league with a +36 goal differential in the third period…
-In the last 8 periods at home, the Bruins have only allowed 38 shots against them.

3rd Period
-2.5 mins in, Bergeron to Pouliot for a great chance.
-4 mins in, Wideman gets his stick in Lucic’s legs and trips him.. no call.. it was close.  Then soon after Seguin with a nice shot.. then some more good offensive work.
-A minute later, Thomas makes a nice save.
-Almost 8 minutes in, we had their goalie, Neuvirth, beat but couldn’t get a good shot.. then going the other way, Wideman (former Bruin, who never played well for us and made tons of mistakes) scores.. he’s had a great year.. go figure.
-Then Thornton and Hendricks look like they’re going to fight before the faceoff, but the refs step in.
-Then halfway through, we get a good offensive stand, but a missed pass leads to a 2-on-1 break for the Capitals with Ovechkin.. across to Johanson.. he scores.  That’s 2 goals for them in a minute and 55 seconds.
-About 14 minutes in, Thomas makes a nice save.
-16 mins in, we had a nice shot the Neuvirth didn’t fully catch and it landed right in front of the open net, but the Capitals knock it away.
-With just over 3 mins left, Chara shoots from the point, Krejci tips it in for his 21st goal of the season.
-Right after, we get another good offensive stand with a nice shot.
-With 2 mins left, as the teams change, Chara gives a big hit and knocks Keith Aucoin into the boards in front of his bench.
-With just over a minute left.. the Capitals seem like they won’t let us get in their zone, then we do and Ference shoots from the point.. scores his 6th goal of the season!  We scored twice in 1:54.. better than them by a second.
-With half a minute left we get a good chance.
-It ends tied 2-2 and we go to overtime.

Overtime
-It starts with a big hit on Wideman by Marchand.
-Almost a minute in, Ovechkin carries in and shoots.. nice save by Thomas.
-Corvo tries to flip the puck past one of the Capitals pressuring him and gives it up.. example of why he has been a healthy scratch in the last few games.
-3 mins in, nice save by Thomas on Ovechkin.
-Half a minute later, Peverley with good work, skates it all the way into the net in his usual fashion for a good chance.
-With just under a minute left, Boychuk with a nice shot leaves the puck loose for Marchand to try to jam it in.. the puck gets lost in the pile and the refs stop play.  Then the Capitals call their timeout to give Ovechkin a breather.
-With 30 seconds left, Ovechkin misses the open net with a rushed shot.
-In the last seconds, Krejci skates it into their zone and passes across to Boychuk who dives to get a shot off.

Shootout
-David Krejci goes first.. nice shot.. stick save.
-Matt Hendricks goes.. he dekes, Thomas falls backwards early, he skates around Thomas and scores.
-Tyler Seguin goes… deke to backhand at the last second.. goal!
-Alex Oveckhin goes.. he goes wide, comes in, Thomas gets his glove on it to knock it away.
-Patrice Bergeron goes.. deke.. scores 5-hole!
-Alexander Semin goes.. deke.. to backhand.. scores.  Tied after 3 rounds, we go one round at a time…
-Rich Peverley goes.. fakes.. shoots.. gloves stop by Neuvirth.
-Brooks Laich goes.. dekes.. backhand.. scores high glove side corner.. the Capitals win and get the 2 points they desperately needed to have a shot at the playoffs.

Final Thoughts / Notes
-Dennis Seidenberg was out for the first time this season as he cut his leg on a skate in the Kings game and it got infected..  So, Joe Corvo, who has been a healthy scratch in the last few games to make room for Greg Zanon (who was playing better), played in Seidenberg’s place.
-This was Vokoun’s 48th game this season (he was out for 13 days with a groin injury), It was Thomas’ 57th game.
-The game before this, the Capitals had a bad 5-1 loss to the Sabres knocking them out of the playoff structure.. so they were desperate to win this.  Ovechkin only got 4 shots on goal and ended up with a +/- rating of -1.  They were 1-1-2 in the 4 games before this one.  They didn’t look a whole lot better in this game, and I’m not to worried about them in the playoffs if they do end up making it.
-If we won, we would’ve clinched a spot in the playoffs.. we’re still one point away.
-Half of our shots and the 2 goals in regulation were by defensemen.. meaning we didn’t have many offensive plays with forwards doing their thing.
-This was the 123rd consecutive Bruins home game that was sold out.
-Two Bruins battle for the NHL 13 cover.. it’s about time.. they should’ve put one of the Bruins on there last year.. like the best player of the whole last season, Tim Thomas.
-On a side note: the Canadiens are officially out of the playoffs for first time since 2007.

Here’s NESN’s game preview (with Bruins/Capitals history & build-up):

Here’s a video of Jason Chimera’s huge dirty hit on Adam McQuaid:

Here’s a another video of the above hit, with more angles plus a Bruins fan yelling at Chimera (with Russian announcing):

Here’s a video of David Krejci’s goal (with Russian announcing.. English link below):

Here’s a video of David Krejci’s goal (in English):
http://video.bruins.nhl.com/videocenter/console?hlg=20112012,2,1154&event=BOS604

Here’s a video of Andrew Ference’s goal:

Here’s a video of the shootout (with Russian announcing.. English link below):

Here’s a video of the shootout (in English):
http://video.bruins.nhl.com/videocenter/console?catid=0&id=168650

Here’s a video recap of the goals and big saves in the game:

Here’s the NHL’s video recap of the game:
http://video.nhl.com/videocenter/console?hlg=20112012,2,1154

Here’s the NHL’s page of video clips of the goals and some saves and hits: http://bruins.nhl.com/club/gamevideo.htm?id=2011021154

Here’s the NHL’s photos from the game:
http://bruins.nhl.com/club/gallery.htm?id=28950&location=/photos&pg=1

Thanks for reading,
Matt

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About bost0nfire

Here in Boston, our pro sports teams won seven championships in a decade, with all teams accounted for. That means the Bruins, Celtics, Red Sox, and yes the New England Patriots.. they did play in Boston at one time after all.. and they're still our team. So, I declare Boston to be the City of Champions. ... Check us out on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/b0stonwins?ref=hl ... Follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/BostonWins_Blog ... **** READER DISCRETION ADVISED: Adult Language may be used.
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