Boston Bruins fall to Toronto Maple Leafs again in frustrating game

BOSTON, MA - NOVEMBER 11: Matt Beleskey
BOSTON, MA - NOVEMBER 11: Matt Beleskey /

The Boston Bruins just could not put the puck in the net in the 4-1 loss to Toronto, even tough the Bruins out shot the Maple Leafs 39-25.

In a game where the Boston Bruins held a hefty advantage in shots, they still added another tally to the loss column.  The Leafs completed the sweep of the home-and-home series after beating Boston 3-2 in OT Friday night.  The B’s could not solve Leafs goaltender Curtis McElhinney, who ended the night with 38 saves.

1st Period

The first period was a one to forget for Brandon Carlo.  The 20 year old defenseman was at the center of both of the Leaf’s first period goals.  The first came at the hands of Mitch Marner at 8:52.  From the corner, Carlo gifted the puck to Marner in the slot after trying to pass through the center of the defensive zone.  Marner quickly put the puck high glove side on Tuukka Rask, who had no chance at a save following the unforced turnover.  Despite only playing the Bruins six times in his young career, the goal was Marner’s 7th point against Boston.

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The Leafs’ second goal of the period came on the power play with about six minutes remaining in the period.  Carlo took a hooking penalty in the Bruins’ defensive zone after the B’s couldn’t clear the puck for some time.  Toronto made quick work of the power play, scoring just seven seconds after Carlo’s penalty.  James Van Riemsdyk, who scored twice against the Bruins Friday night, beat Boston again off a deflection in the slot from a Nazem Kadri pass.

The Bruins responded quickly to the Maple Leafs’ second goal.  Frank Vatrano put Boston on the board only a minute later with a deflection of his own.  Vatrano redirected Torey Krug‘s shot from the blue line to beat McElhinney stick side.  The Bruins went into the first intermission down 2-1.

2nd Period

BOSTON, MA – NOVEMBER 11: Matt Martin
BOSTON, MA – NOVEMBER 11: Matt Martin /

The teams battled it out in the second period, which was the most even period in the game concerning shots on goal.  Boston held only a slim advantage over Toronto, out shooting the Maple Leafs 13-11.  However, neither team could find the net.  There was something to get the Boston crowd excited though when Matt Beleskey fought Matt Martin.

Martin delivered a big hit to Anders Bjork a shift or two prior to the fight, which Beleskey must have taken exception to.  The fight lasted all of three seconds before both guys seemed to lose their balance and fall to the ice.  Good for Beleskey though in an effort to prove his worth to the team, protect one of his rookies, and fire up his guys to try to tie the game.

3rd Period

The Bruins wish they could redo the third period.  Still down 2-1, Boston went on the powerplay three minutes into the period after Andreas Borgman was called for a trip.  Then about a minute into the powerplay, ex-Bruin Domimic Moore was also called for tripping.  Now with a two-man advantage for about a minute, the TD Garden crowd felt a tying goal coming.  However, the 5-on-3 and the following 5-on-4 came and went without the Bruins able to find the net.  The B’s had their chances, but just could not beat McElhinney.

Even after the failed powerplays, Boston had the momentum.  That changed pretty quickly when Morgan Reilly gave the Maple Leafs a 3-1 lead at 6:52 in the period.  The goal silenced the Boston crowd and took a good amount of wind out of the Bruins’ sails.  Boston continued to put pucks on McElhinney, but not with the same intensity as earlier in the period.  Patrick Marleau sealed the win for the Maple Leafs with an empty net goal at 18:13.

Next: Bruce Cassidy delivers for Bruins

Looking Ahead

The Bruins have some time to put this loss behind them before their upcoming four-game road-trip.  The B’s will head to Anaheim on Wednesday to play the Ducks at the Honda Center.  Let’s hope Boston learns how to score again before then.