In what is expected to be a tight-checking and low-scoring best-of-seven series, the Boston Bruins beat the New York Islanders, 5-2, Saturday night at the TD Garden in Game 1 of their second-round series.
One look at the numbers from the Black and Gold’s fifth consecutive playoff victory are pretty silly.
Since the April 11 trade deadline deal that landed the Bruins Taylor Hall from the Buffalo Sabres, the Boston top-six forwards have been one of the best sets of top two lines in the league. In Game 1, they put up some absurd numbers on their counterparts from Long Island.
Boston’s top line of Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron, and David Pastrnak fired 19 shots on Islanders goalie Ilya Sorokin, with nine coming in the first period alone to account for half of the Bruins 18 shots on the net in the first 20 minutes. While 16 of the shots were turned back by Sorokin, three found the back of the net off the stick of Pastrnak for his second career hat trick.
Not to be outdone, the Bruins second-line of Hall, David Krejci, Craig Smith (who left in the second period with a lower-body injury), and Jake DeBrusk, who filled in for Smith in the third period, had an impressive night themselves.
The second-line accounted for one goal, Hall’s empty-netter with just over a minute left in the game, and three assists from Krejci, to go along with 10 shots on Sorokin.
On the flip side for New York, their first-line had just three shots on Tuukka Rask and their second-line had nine shots on the net, with Anthony Beauvillier accounting for one of the Isles’ two goals with a first-period power play tally.
It is just one game, but if the Bruins continue to get that type of production and shots on the net from their top two lines in the series, they will be a tough out for the Islanders over seven games.