Anyone who was skeptical about how the Bruins would fare after spending 100+ days away from the Garden Ice, I hope you left the skepticism at the door. The Boston Bruins beat the New York Rangers 3-1 in their first game back. The new father Milan Lucic opened the scoring and Dan Paille and Johnny Boychuk added the supporting goals. The lone Rangers goal came from Brad Richards in the second period.
Tukka Rask Tuukka Rask debuted in his new starting role in Boston, making 21 saves against the Rangers. The two new kids on the block Dougie Hamilton and Chris Bourque played very well in their first games, Hamilton forced a lot of turn overs and fore checked hard, Bourque was shaky at first but learned the ropes and played physical and also forced a few turnovers. Bourque had a chance for an empty net goal but the adrenaline got to him as he missed the net. Still, a great performance from the two new additions in Boston.
Rick Nash certainly dangled well here and there but his play was anything but spectacular. No bias, the guy really isn’t what he used to be in Columbus, he fell victim to the Bruins checking, and looked lost at several points through out that game. Sure his spin-o-rama move before the Richards goal was nice but that was about the only flair I saw from him. Henrik Lundqvist played very well and made a highlight reel stop against David Krejci on a powerplay chance. Lundqvist made 31 saves on 34 shots and certainly showed no signs of crushed confidence following the Rangers conference finals loss last year. The Bruins checked hard and played smart, including an amazing shift by the KHL (Krejci-Horton-Lucic) line in the second period.
The Bruins are set to face the Winnipeg Jets on Monday January 21st and hopefully they can improve on tonight’s performance and be the team to beat for the Eastern Conference lead this season.