After bagging their first consecutive wins in almost two months, the B’s came out slow on Saturday afternoon and dropped a tough one to the Capitals 4-3. While the Bruins seem to be cold, one unlikely forward continues to heat up.
Jordan Caron now has at least a point in four straight games, dating back to a two-point performance in Manhattan on March 4 when he bagged his fourth goal of the season. In his last four games, he’s a plus-8 and has tossed 10 total shots on net.
On Sunday, it was Caron -– alongside Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand on the B’s second line -– who set up Johnny Boychuk‘s third-period tally with under four minutes to go.
“I think just more confidence, and obviously a bit more playing time –- I think that’s huge,” he said after the B’s loss. “When you feel you have that confidence of everybody, I think it gets you going and you feel more comfortable out there. Right now it’s good, but we came up short a little bit [Saturday] so obviously we’re going to have a tough challenge [Sunday], so we’re going to have to bounce back and be ready to battle.”
One figure who won’t be a factor in Sunday’s tilt in Pittsburgh is Sidney Crosby, who has been ruled out by the Penguins. His loss will surely make things slightly easier for the B’s, but Caron says it won’t be a mental factor heading into the showdown.
“I think he’s a great player, and everyone wants him back [but] for ourselves, I don’t think it matters.”
Even though he won’t have to worry about matching up against Sid the Kid, Caron had his hands full on Saturday with another one of the league’s top forwards in Alex Ovechkin. Caron held his own, and then some, against the Caps captain.
“It’s a good challenge,” he admitted. “I think to play against top players in the league is always a tough challenge, but it’s the job so we got to be ready, find my game and just play.”
It was Caron’s hit on Ovechkin that set up Marchand’s second-period tally. The B’s winger’s body contact on Ovechkin forced the puck out into the center of the ice where Marchand picked up, went in on the left side of Caps keeper Tomas Vokoun and slipped it through the netminder’s legs.
“Ovechkin came out of his zone and had his down a little bit, and I had some speed so I just finished my hit on him.”
“I thought Caron did a good job,” added head coach Claude Julien. “He’s a big enough body and when Ovechkin challenged him physically he was up to the task.”
Marchand, who bagged a two-point day, is enjoying having such a hot player on his line.
“Yeah, he’s playing really well right now. He works very hard and he’s a big body and he controls the puck very well down by the net,” said Marchand, who now has 23 goals on the year. “He seems to have a little confidence right now and we can feed off of that. We enjoy playing against the big lines and trying to shut them down. Jordy is good defensively and he comes back hard and he’s good positionally so he definitely contributes to the line.”