Boston Bruins: 3 Deciding Factors In First Round Victory

Boston Bruins (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Boston Bruins (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /
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Boston Bruins, David Krejci #46 (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Boston Bruins, David Krejci #46 (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

Special Teams

We touched on this one part way through this series. The Boston Bruins’ performances on the man-advantage and on the penalty kill ultimately decided the series.

The Boston Bruins netted 5 powerplay goals across the series and conceded once. They also added a further 2 goals on the penalty-kill, while only allowing the Canes to take advantage on their power-play opportunities twice.

Spending 33:25 playing 5-on-4 on the powerplay, the Boston Bruins averaged a goal for roughly every 6 and a half minutes spent with the man-advantage.

Heading into the series, the Bruins’ were the second-best team on the power-play in the regular season, though it’s fair to say a lot of their production was coming from David Pastrnak.

When he went down injured after Game 1, you might’ve expected the worst and figured the team may suffer at 5-on-4 as a result. This didn’t appear to be the case. Both goals in the clinching Game 5 came from the Bruins’ powerplay unit, with Pastrnak grabbing primary assists on both which highlighted his importance to the team.

In fairness though, it was Brad Marchand and David Krejci leading the charge in his absence. Krejci played a hand in both goals in that final game too, let’s not forget.

Far from just relying on the powerplay though, the Boston Bruins took advantage on the penalty-kill with the likes of Charlie Coyle and Sean Kuraly properly stepping up to limit a team that certainly has some strong offensive threats with an extra man.

It was a real team effort all round from all special team units, especially when you realise how close the series at even-strength actually was. When you remove special team scoring and only look at the teams at even-strength, they’re very tightly matched at 9-8.