The Boston Bruins met up against the Anaheim Ducks on Thursday night for their first of two matchups this season.
The Bruins moved around a few players in the lineup adding forward Jack Studnicka and Defenseman Matt Grzelcyk
Jake DeBrusk has been dazzling to start the season and he nearly added to his goal total in the first period with a goal 15 minutes into the game but the Ducks successfully challenged for offsides. Despite this, the Bruins really took it to the Ducks in the first period outshooting them 13-5. The Bruins have been really aggressive on the forecheck to start the season. Something that new coach Jim Montgomery specifically mentioned in his introductory press conference.
Jake DeBrusk has benefitted the most from the change in pace. He’s been all over the ice in the best way possible. He pushes the game and his scoring touch seems to have come back. DeBrusk scored almost a third of his goals last season in April. He has 2 goals in 3 games played and 12 shots in that span. He has been aggressive on the forecheck and disciplined on the ice even showing some penalty-killing abilities. If he keeps this up DeBrusk could become a key piece in the Bruins’ future.
The Bruins got the scoring started with a goal from Taylor Hall at 2:31 in the second with a shot right in front of the net. It was back and forth for a little bit and at 13:57 Anaheim evened the score when former Bruin Frank Vtrano got one past Linus Ullmark. The second continued to be back and forth ending in a tie on the scoreboard and shots.
The Third saw the Bruins controlling a lot of the game at the start. Boston peppered Ducks’ goalie John Gibson with shots but he held strong to keep the score tied at 1. The Ducks gained some momentum after a slashing penalty from Jack Studnicka at 9:29. Boston was able to counter a little bit but was outshot in the third 11-9.
Jack Studnicka is in a tough situation with the Bruins. He made his season debut tonight and didn’t have the game that would warrant more playing time. He was a -1 and took 2 penalties in tonight’s win. It is his first regular season game so let’s hope he gets another shot soon to show he can be a part of the success of this team.
Overtime ended and the game went to a shootout. Linus Ullmark was awesome all game. He stopped 30 shots and added some highlights to his reel. Save after save it seemed like nobody could get these goalies to budge until Taylor Hall skated to center ice. He snuck one past Gibson to take the lead for Boston in the shootout. That left Ullmark to close the game against Max Comtois. Ullmark made a spectacular glove save to put the Bruins back in the win column and set their record at 4-1-0 to start the season.
Matt Grzelcyk also made his season debut tonight and had an assist and 4 blocks in 20 minutes of ice time. Grzelcyk is just one of three key players on this Bruins roster that will be returning from off-season surgery.
This is the start of a 4 game homestand for the B’s as they hope to keep their momentum going and pad the win totals before they get back to full strength.