The Bruins found themselves involved in a tight, see-saw battle for much of the first two periods in Long Island on Saturday afternoon. The upset happy Isles were coming off back to back 5-3 victories over the Penguins this past week and were ready to take it to the defending champs. Marty Turco started in net for the B’s who were looking to give Tim Thomas some rest since he is the likely starter Sunday afternoon against the Rangers. The opening frame was rusty and lethargic, with both teams only mustering 7 shots a piece. The passes were not crisp, the neutral zone was sloppy, and the execution was certainly lacking. Still, after a nifty pass by Milan Lucic, David Krejci managed to put the Bruins up 1-0 with a nice wrister from the slot. Not to be outdone, Kyle Okposo answered a mere 29 seconds later with a goal of his own, one Turco would certainly want back. The game was tied heading into the first intermission.
Gregory Campbell got the second started on the right foot when he dropped the gloves with AHL callup Michael Haley, answering a hit by Haley earlier in the game that Campbell did not like. Two minutes later Chris Kelly got the scoring started in the second with his 20th goal on the year, a new career high. With Kelly eclipsing the twenty goal mark, that gave the Bruins their sixth player with twenty or more goals this year. With about five minutes remaining, P.A. Parenteau tied it up with his first of two goals on the night. This was the second time the black and gold surrendered the lead on the night. The Bruins ended the second period tied at two and were looking forward to the third period where the Bruins continue their dominance over the rest of the NHL.
Brad Marchand and Tyler Seguin scored consecutive goals for the B’s, each of them netting their 27th of the year. P.A. Parenteau would light the lamp for the second time of the night about halfway through the period when he was the beneficiary of some great vision by John Tavares. Unfortunately for the Isles, that is as close as it would get. Patrice Bergeron would add his 21st on the year and David Krejci would tally another time as well and the Bruins took this one 6-3. Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci scored 24 seconds apart, marking the sixth time this year the Bruins have scored consecutive goals in under 30 seconds. The Bergeron line did the majority of the damage with eight points on the night, (Seguin 3 points, Marchand 3 points, Bergeron 2 points) and another monster game was turned in by Milan Lucic. Teams have still yet to find an answer for him when he is moving his feet and taking defensman wide through the zone. Marty Turco got his second win and turned away 19 shots as the Bruins appear to be getting into playoff mode.
Sunday’s matchup with the Rangers should be another installment of instant classic hockey. Though both teams have already clinched playoff births, the seeding could be determined with a few different scenarios working out. Should the Senators lose in regulation to the Islanders, the Bruins could be the Northeast division champions by the time the puck drops. Even if Ottawa can muster up another win, the B’s control their own destiny and can wrap up the division with a win of their own. If the Penguins lose to the Flyers in the early game in any fashion, and the Rangers beat the Bruins, they will take the East’s number one seed. If the Penguins lose in regulation, then the Rangers will just need one point to take the conference. This game should be very exciting and a true early dose of playoff hockey as both teams attempt to gain that mental edge. Puck drop has been moved to 7:07. Let’s go Black and Gold!