Final, Canucks 3-2: Three times in a four-game homestand the Bruins go to a shootout, and all three times they lose. But that's not the issue. Boston again goes the duration of the second and third periods without a goal and blows an early two-goal advantage in this one.
The losing streak is at 10 (0-6-4) for the bumbling B's, who can sing the same tune — they played pretty well for long stretches but simply could not put the puck in the net.
Boston outshot Vancouver, 43-31, won 35-of-60 faceoffs and had the game's only four takeaways. But Roberto Luongo was just too good in net as the road warrior Canucks escape with a big two points.
It's a quick turnaround for Boston as the team travels to Montreal for a Sunday afternoon clash with the Canadiens. It marks the opener of a four-game road trip before the Olympics break. Will the streak end before the Games begin?
Shootout, Round 3: Patrice Bergeron with a chance to keep the Bruins alive has the puck poked away and holy crap, the losing streak is at 10.
Shootout, Round 2: David Krejci fails and the B's are up against it.
Shootout, Round 1: Pavol Demitra schools Rask and the Canucks are up 1-0.
Shootout, Round 1: Blake Wheeler stuffed by Luongo's left pad.
End of overtime, 2-2: The Bruins got seven of the eight shots on net in OT but are forced to resort to a shootout again.
Tuukka Rask is 3-3 in his career in shootouts. Roberto Luongo is 1-2 this season, stopping just four of his opponents' eight attempts.
Overtime, 2.2 seconds, 2-2: Two more shots by the B's in the final 10 seconds here. Boston will have 2.2 seconds of a power play and a faceoff in the Canucks zone to try to make something work here.
Otherwise we have the third shootout of the homestand.
Overtime, 39.8 seconds, 2-2: Roberto Luongo nearly loses one from his pads but is able to cover up just in time.
Overtime, 1:34, 2-2: Zdeno Chara and then Blake Wheeler add to the attempts here in OT, but still nothing to show for it.
The B's are a shot away from reaching 40 for the third straight game.
Overtime, 2:50, 2-2: Roberto Luongo covers up another left floating around the left post. He has been outstanding since the B's early outburst.
Overtime, 4:25, 2-2: Blake Wheeler with the first real look in the OT session. His wrister is right in Roberto Luongo's stomach.
End of regulation, 2-2: When the game was a physical one (12 total penalties in the first two periods) the Bruins seemed to thrive, but once it became a bit more of an open affair the Canucks had it in them to tie it, giving us five minutes of 4-on-4 action.
Boston is 8-10 in overtime affairs, Vancouver 4-2.
Third period, 57.1 seconds, 2-2: It smells like overtime, a session Boston has become all-too-familiar with of late.
Third period, 2:09, 2-2: The B's have not been starved for chances here in the third but it's the same old problem – they cannot finish.
Remember, their only two goals, the last of which was more than 52 minutes ago, came on the power play.
Third period, 4:42, 2-2: Another broken stick comes into play and this time throws the B's off just enough to help the Canucks tie it.
A Boston defender seemed to misread a play after a stick shattered and it left Pavol Demitra open for his first goal of the season.
Here we go again.
Third period, 6:53, Bruins 2-1: Some great end-to-end action here as first Blake Wheeler is denied on a breakaway and then Tuukka Rask has one of his best saves of the game on a Vancouver rush.
Rask follows it up with another stoning and loses his helmet in the mix.
Chants of "Tuuuuuuu" rain down upon him.
Third period, 9:07, Bruins 2-1: Tuukka Rask with a glove save of a slap shot, his 17th save of the game.
Third period, 10:55, Bruins 2-1: Nice play by Tanner Glass right there as he uses his glove to help the Canucks clear the zone after losing his stick.
By the way, there have been a ton of broken or lost sticks in this one.
Third period, 12:30, Bruins 2-1: Patrice Bergeron's drive in the slot is off, but the Bruins are maintaining an attack here, something they've been professing as a positive aspect of their recent losses.
Third period, 13:53, Bruins 2-1: In addition to assisting on both Bruins goals, Marc Savard has won 11-of-14 faceoffs in 18 total shifts.
On the other end of things, Kyle Wellwood has lost all seven of the faceoffs he has taken for Vancouver.
Third period, 14:37, Bruins 2-1: Good to see the B's keeping the puck in the Canucks' zone here in the third and putting pressure on Roberto Luongo. You get the sense that they know how much an insurance goal means at this point.
Third period, 17:34, Bruins 2-1: Michael Ryder's doorstep drive early in this period is his third really good chance in the past few minutes of game time.
He leads the Bruins with four shots and of course had the game's opening goal.
Third period, 19:50, Bruins 2-1: Boston is 12-3-1 when leading after the second period while the Canucks are 5-14-1 when on the other end of things going into the final 20 minutes.
End of second period, Bruins 2-1: The way this one started it's likely many of you were hopeful the B's would actually get four or five goals on the board for a change, but here they are stuck on two and now with just a one-goal advantage.
Boston has outshot Vancouver, 25-12, and now has a 114-63 advantage over its last two-plus games. That won't mean much unless it secures a pair of points here.
Second period, 1:00, Bruins 2-1: Michael Ryder gets two great looks in a minute, the first a drive in the slot that sails high and the second a shot in tight that Roberto Luongo blocks.
Second period, 3:10, Bruins 2-1: Tuukka Rask turns aside a blast from the right circle but only after the puck dances along the goal line for a beat.
Second period, 4:30, Bruins 2-1: No dice for the B's on their fifth power play. Since scoring on their first two they are 0-for-3.
Second period, 6:36, Bruins 2-1: The officials continue to call this one tight as Shane O'Brien goes off for interference and the Bruins are on the power play.
Second period, 7:10, Bruins 2-1: Another quality kill for the Bruins and this one can be classified as clutch. There was a sense in the building that this was the start of the B's regular collapse and if Vancouver scored there would have been a ton of "here we go agains" uttered throughout the Garden.
Second period, 9:48, Bruins 2-1: You cannot keep giving this Canucks team power-play chances as they will make you pay.
Vancouver has another opportunity with an extra man – its fifth – after Zdeno Chara picks up an interference call.
Second period, 11:09, Bruins 2-1: The Bruins' shutout streak against Vancouver ends at about 150 minutes as Mason Raymond.
Give the Canucks a ton of credit for outworking the B's along the boards for a period of about 15 seconds to keep the puck in the zone. Seconds before the goal Milan Lucic, who was one of several Boston players who could not corral the puck, missed a check badly. It freed up space for Vancouver to find Raymond in front.
Second period, 11:41, Bruins 2-0: We just got word that Johnny Boychuk will not return for this one. No surprise there after the blast he took off the old noggin.
No immediate word on the severity of the injury.
Second period, 13:20, Bruins 2-0: Marco Sturm gets turned aside on a shorthanded breakaway, the second such chance the Bruins have had in this one.
Second period, 14:24, Bruins 2-0: Another penalty in a game which is being filled by them. This time it's Michael Ryder who gets whistled for tripping.
Second period, 16:10, Bruins 2-0: Zdeno Chara nearly gets a carbon copy of his first goal but it sails wide. Still, Boston has eight seconds of a 5-on-3 and then most of another power play chance after Henrik Sedin is caught slashing.
Second period, 18:02, Bruins 2-0: Mason Raymond floats the puck into the crowd and picks up a penalty for it, giving Boston another chance with an extra man.
Second period, 18:38, Bruins 2-0: Vancouver drops to 0-for-3 on the power play after another strong kill for the Bruins.
Second period, 19:59, Bruins 2-0: The Canucks begin the second period with 74 seconds of a power play left. Mark Recchi will be the one storming out of the box if and when Boston can kill this one off.
The Bruins are 11-2-2 when leading after the first period and 13-1-1 when holding a 2-0 advantage.
End of first period, Bruins 2-0: Nice to see the slumping B's come out with a ton of energy in this one and make their opportunities count.
They go 2-for-2 on the power play and end up outshooting Vancouver 13-7.
With four straight on the road before the Olympics break it seems almost imperative that Boston gets at least one 'W' on this otherwise dismal homestand.
It's off to a good start in doing so.
First period, 46.7 seconds, Bruins 2-0: Vancouver will end the first on a power play, its third, after Mark Recchi picks up a hooking penalty.
First period, 1:05, Bruins 2-0: Shawn Thornton and Darcy Hordichuk will go at it again, if Thornton gets his way.
Their first fight didn't yield enough satisfaction for the Bruins brawler, I'm sure. He just challenged Hordichuk again near the Boston goal.
First period, 3:50, Bruins 2-0: The crowd loves it as the B's get off a couple more shots on Roberto Luongo.
Boston now has a 12-6 shots advantage.
The big screen just asked the fans to salute the Bruins' six Olympians, the biggest ovation obviously going to the one Team USA member, Tim Thomas.
First period, 5:40, Bruins 2-0: 2-for-2!
The power play pays off for the second time in the opening period as Michael Ryder tips in a drive by Marc Savard.
It's Ryder's 13th goal of the season and gives the Bruins five power-play goals on this four-game homestand.
First period, 7:26, Bruins 1-0: As Milan Lucic skates from the Bruins' penalty box, Vancouver center Rick Rypien gets an interference call and the B's get their second power-play chance of the game.
First period, 7:35, Bruins 1-0: The Bruins have now killed off two penalties against the NHL's fifth-best power-play unit.
Of course, the penalty kill has been Boston's most consistent unit this season. It entered ranked third overall by killing 86.3 percent.
First period, 9:35, Bruins 1-0: Milan Lucic does his best bulldozer impression by shoving both Roberto Luongo and a Canucks defender into the net.
As he was ushered to the box for interference, Lucic received some unkind words from Darcy Hordichuk, who was emerging from the Canucks' penalty box at the same time.
Keep an eye on those two potentially getting into it later on.
First period, 10:53, Bruins 1-0: Boychuk is helped off the ice by his teammates, moving very slowly.
He was in deep on the play and took a blast from the right circle.
Boston nearly nabs a shorthanded tally seconds later but Roberto Luongo is up to the challenge.
First period, 11:38, Bruins 1-0: This does not look good. Johnny Boychuk takes a slapshot near his left temple and crumbles to the ice. He remains face down as I type this, but now is getting to his knees.
Updates when I get them on Boychuk's condition.
First period, 12:56, Bruins 1-0: Matt Hunwick is called for a hold and the Canucks have their first chance with an extra man.
Boston has given up three power-play goals on this homestand.
First period, 13:59, Bruins 1-0: Dennis Wideman takes a pair of hits in a span of 10 seconds, one on either end of the ice.
At the timeout we have Boston holding a 6-1 advantage in shots on goal. Adding that to the Bruins' totals from the last two games they have outshot their last three opponents by a combined margin of 95-52.
First period, 15:33, Bruins 1-0: Man are we a good team. You pointed it out, I echoed it and Shawn Thornton obliged.
Heeding our call for an early brawl Thornton goes at it with Darcy Hordichuk and gets the better of it.
First period, 18:04, Bruins 1-0: Picture perfect and just what this place needed.
The Bruins execute a brilliant power play that puts the puck on the stick of Zdeno Chara, who scores his fifth of the season.
The assists come from Marco Sturm and Marc Savard.
First period, 18:40, 0-0: The Canucks rank 14th overall on penalty kills at 81.6 percent, but 19th on the road.
First period, 19:22, 0-0: An early power-play chance for the Bruins as Tanner Glass goes off for boarding.
First period, 19:55, 0-0: We are underway in this one and as some of you may have seen, Shawn Thornton is active after a few healthy scratches.
I noticed one of your readers saying you would like to see Thornton or Milan Lucic throw down early to get this team a bit fired up. I concur.
Let's keep an eye on that.
12:55 p.m.: As the Bruins have struggled there have been fingers pointed at multiple aspects of their game, but it's gotten so frustrating for some that just getting back into the win column is the important thing.
"I think you get to a point where it doesn't matter how you play, you want the results to be more important, and that's what we've got to do here," said B's head coach Claude Julien moments ago.
Andrew Ference was out there again in warm-ups and Julien insists he'll be back soon. Ference was the last Bruin still on the ice before the team retreated to the locker room. While his effectiveness upon return remains in question, his presence does not, at least to Julien.
"He's coming along and I think he's getting better and hopefully we'll see him back soon," Julien said of Ference. "There's no doubt, I think there's some experience missing back there [on defense] and when you don't have that, to me, a defenseman is like a quarterback on a football team."
12:35 p.m.: Tuukka Rask led the Bruins onto the ice and will be starting in net, contrary to an earlier report.
No surprise on the other end, where Roberto Luongo is between the pipes, seeking his fifth straight 30-win season.
12:10 p.m.: Greetings from the Garden, where the Bruins will soon take the ice for warm-ups wearing their Winter Classic uniforms. They've gone 1-1-0 thus far in those.
Also from the game notes:
This is the 12th in a league-high 19 afternoon games for the B's. They are just 3-6-2 thus far in such affairs.
Finally, this is Boston's last home game before the Olympics break. Its next game at the Garden comes March 2 against Montreal. This 23-day stretch between home games ranks as the longest in team history, eclipsing a 22-day run in February 1993.
11:16 a.m.: When the Bruins last had a losing streak like the one they are on now, Vancouver was an up-and-coming outpost of the British Empire.
Saturday it holds one of the hottest teams in the NHL, the Canucks, who hope to extend the B's misery to 10 straight games.
A loss to the Canucks in a TD Garden matinee would put the Bruins within one of matching the franchise record of 11 straight setbacks in their inaugural season of 1924-25.
Boston was able to gain a point in Thursday's 3-2 shootout loss to Montreal and can hope that Vancouver's monstrous 13-game, 44-day road trip has begun to take its toll. Sure enough, the Northwest Division-leading Canucks have dropped their last two, including a 3-1 setback in Ottawa on Thursday.
And if you're looking for something else to hang your hat onto, the Bruins own the all-time series in Boston, 39-7-7.
Tim Thomas is expected back in net for this one. Be sure to follow along as the B's aim to capture a little life.
Powered by WordPress.com VIP