End of game, Penguins 2-1: As far as the game goes, the Bruins played very well. However, the real story here is the state of Marc Savard. He took a brutal hit late in the third period and was taken off the ice on a stretcher.
It certainly looked to me like the hit on Savard was dirty. After Savard took a shot from the high post, the Penguins’ Matt Cooke lowered his body a delivered a left elbow directly to Savard’s head. I’m sure the league will look into the hit. (In case you were wondering, there was no penalty called. All the officials missed it.)
The most important thing right now is the health of Marc Savard. Check back to NESN.com and SportsDesk for more information on his injury.
It was a very good showing by the Bruins this afternoon, especially Tim Thomas. However, the headline — rightfully so — will be the health of Marc Savard.
Third period, 0:39, Penguins 2-1: Boston is narrowly able to avoid allowing what looked like a sure empty-net goal, but there is not much time left.
Third period, 2:20, Penguins 2-1: The Bruins are on the attack. Can they net the equalizer?
Third period, 3:15, Penguins 2-1: Back on the ice, the Bruins will need to try and put Savard out of their minds for just a few minutes — easier said than done. That certainly looked like a dirty hit, but Cooke wasn’t whistled for a penalty.
Third period, 5:37, Penguins 2-1: Savard is being taken off the ice as the crowd and Penguins cheer loudly. He took a shot from the high post and then took a brutal shoulder from Pittsburgh’s Matt Cooke that seemed to snap his head and neck back. Savard was completely defenseless and dropped immediately to the ice. Let’s hope he will be OK.
Third period, 5:37, Penguins 2-1: Savard is down. This does not look good. The crowd is completely silent. I am not a doctor, but looking at Savard’s eyes, it looks like he may have suffered a concussion. Right now they are taking him off the ice on a stretcher.
Third period, 6:57, Penguins 2-1: Pittsburgh with a furious attack. Thomas makes several terrific saves.
Third period, 9:41, Penguins 2-1: The Bruins defense is holding tough, but they are not getting much in the way of an attack. For right now, that’s actually OK. They do not have to worry about scoring for a few more minutes.
Third period, 11:21, Penguins 2-1: It feels like the Bruins have put an end to Pittsburgh’s offensive surge. This included a great save by Thomas against Crosby. The Kid tried to deke Thomas, but to no avail.
Third period, 13:42, Penguins 2-1: A good chance for the B’s. Lucic with a steal in the neutral zone, and then drops a pass, but the shot goes wide.
The Penguins follow that up with a hard shot that bangs loudly off the post. Pittsburgh is really attacking at the start of this third period. The B’s cannot afford to allow another goal. They need to withstand this rush.
Third period, 15:55, Penguins 2-1: Malkin gets credit for the goal on one of Pittsburgh’s softest shots of the game. He carries the puck from the right wing, fans on a centering pass, then throws the puck on net. Thomas seems to be in good position, but the shot sneaks by him. That’s a tough way to start the third period.
Third period, 18:33, Penguins 2-1: The Penguins quickly net a goal here in the third. I’m not sure who they are going to give the goal to. The shot might have been tipped.
Third period, 19:42, 1-1: The puck is down in the third. The B’s need to finish strong and continue to attack. They cannot afford to watch the clock and hope for a 1-1 finish.
End of second period, 1-1: Some good things for the B’s that period. They scored first for the 10th time in the last 11 games. They also did a great job of not allowing a goal in the four-on-four situation. That is very impressive against a line led by Sidney Crosby.
Many Bruins are playing very well. In particular, Bergeron and Satan have done a very nice job in the offensive zone. They have been quick to the puck and have made some very nice passes. Chara and Wideman have seen a lot of ice time and have played strong games. They are holding their position and not trying to do too much. In net, Thomas has been terrific. The Pittsburgh attack was very aggressive during the second period, but Thomas has come to play.
End of second period, 1-1: Bruins looking good, as they are tied with the defending champs after two periods.
Second period, 1:17, 1-1: Pittsburgh with a 3-2 counter-attack, but Thomas makes a good save and quickly slides several feet outside the net to cover up the puck. Timmie’s playing well.
Second period, 3:58, 1-1: The B’s withstood that Pittsburgh surge and are now back in attack mode. Satan just had a beautiful dish from behind the net, but Lucic was unable to get a stick on it. Satan is having a good game here. Yeah, I said it.
Second period, 6:14, 1-1: The action is really picking up here late in the second. I think that first goal really fired up the Penguins. They are attacking with every line. The Bruins will do well if they can hold Pittsburgh to only one goal this period.
Second period, 6:58, 1-1: The Bruins escape the four-on-four. Crosby’s line was on the ice for that action and the B’s were fortunate that the Penguins’ best opportunity went off the post.
Second period, 9:52, 1-1: Four-on-four action for the next 2:00 after dual roughing calls.
Second period, 10:54, 1-1: Pascal Dupuis scores for the Penguins. He attacks with a wrap-around from behind the net and keeps slapping at the puck until it goes in. The goal was reviewed, but it’s upheld.
Second period, 13:43, Bruins 1-0: The Bruins take a penalty right after their goal, but they are able to kill it off.
On the B’s goal, Sturm and Krejci pick up assists. It was a team effort to net that one, with Wheeler picking the puck away from a sprawled-out Marc-Andre Fleury and depositing it in the back of the net.
Second period, 16:22, Bruins 1-0: Bruins score! Great action in front of the Penguins net and Blake Wheeler pokes in the goal.
Second period, 17:45, 0-0: Another penalty upcoming against the Penguins — hooking. On the delayed penalty, the B’s got a very good look, with Bergeron dishing a nice pass to Recchi, who put a shot on net.
Second period, 18:55, 0-0: Pittsburgh kills off the remainder of the penalty. The Pens started off this second period very well with a couple of shots.
Second period, 19:52, 0-0: We’re underway in the second. The B’s will be on the power play for about one minute. The Bruins only had three shots on goal in that first period.
End of first period, 0-0: Tim Thomas made several good saves in that first period. Nothing unbelievable, but a number of good, solid saves. That is exactly what you need to do against a team like Pittsburgh. You simply cannot allow any easy goals.
Sidney Crosby is a special player. By my count, he made three terrific centering passes that period. It’s not so much that the B’s made great defensive plays, but more that Crosby’s teammates were not where they should have been. He looked to set up others in the first, but I would be surprised if Crosby does not try to attack to score in this second period.
This game is a measuring stick for the Bruins. So far, so good.
End of first period, 0-0: You certainly have to like the score, but you also have to realize that the Bruins had three power plays that period and really did not do much with them. Pittsburgh’s penalty killing has been very aggressive.
First period, 1:18, 0-0: Interference call against the Penguins. The B’s have played well overall, but they really need to capitalize on one of these power plays.
First period, 2:49, 0-0: The Penguins looked better early on, but the B’s have controlled play of late. Ryder with some good rushes and Thomas has played very solidly.
First period, 4:03, 0-0: A good opportunity by the B’s. Satan with some fancy stickwork, but he is unable to get a shot away.
First period, 6:52, 0-0: Pittsburgh does a great job of killing off its second penalty of the period. No shots on goal for the B’s that time.
First period, 8:55, 0-0: Pittsburgh is really aggressive early on. Boston is having difficulty going D to D because the Penguins are all over them.
On the bright side, the B’s will be going on their second power play after a high stick. The B’s could really use an early lead.
First period, 10:42, 0-0: Oh, a terrific save by Tim Thomas. The Penguins charge from the right wing and Malkin throws a great centering pass, but Thomas is up to the challenge.
First period, 11:23, 0-0: Pittsburgh’s penalty killing has been very good of late. They have now killed off 62 of their last 72 penalties, including 21 straight.
First period, 12:19, 0-0: Really only one good look on that power play. Bergeron had a shot from outside, but he sends the puck just wide.
First period, 14:31, 0-0: The Bruins are going on the power play after a tripping call against Pittsburgh.
First period, 16:25, 0-0: Very early we see an example Sidney Crosby’s presence. He rushed the net (without the puck) and drew two defenders.
The B’s look pretty strong early. They are skating hard and definitely matching the Penguins’ intensity.
First period, 19:23, 0-0: The B’s are underway in Pittsburgh.
3:04 p.m.: The puck drops at 3:08 p.m. Tim Thomas will mind the net this afternoon for Boston. He played brilliantly in the third period yesterday, helping seal the victory for the B’s.
Tuukka Rask has skated with the team the past two days, but Claude Julien is going to keep him out for one more game. He is expected to dress for Tuesday’s game at Toronto.
2:39 p.m.: About 20 minutes away from the drop of the puck in Pittsburgh. If the playoffs started today, Bruins-Penguins would actually be a first-round matchup. The B’s really want to finish in seventh place or better in the Eastern Conference so they can avoid a first-round matchup with either Washington or Pittsburgh.
2:31 p.m.: After a great win on Saturday, the Bruins come back today to face the Pittsburgh Penguins. A playoff berth will not come easy. Coming away from today’s game with a point would have to be considered a big plus.
9:59 a.m.: The Bruins play the second of back-to-back games this Sunday, going on the road to face the very talented Pittsburgh Penguins. Playing back-to-back road games is always difficult, but it’s even tougher when the opponent comes in the form of the offensive-minded Penguins.
After the slow start to the season, the Bruins cannot afford to mail in any games the rest of the way. The B’s must continue to accumulate points if they plan on making the playoffs. It would be great if they can steal a point (or even two) on the road against a team like Pittsburgh.
The Bruins currently hold the seventh playoffs spot in the Eastern conference, but they will need to figure out a way to slow down Pittsburgh’s high-powered offense. The Penguins are led by Canada’s Olympic hero, Sidney Crosby. “Sid the Kid” leads the NHL with 44 goals, including the two he netted on Saturday.
With Tuukka Rask out because of injury, Tim Thomas has been in net the past two games. (He had not started since Feb. 2.) Thomas has played very well in his return, quieting his critics with two straight wins. He will need to be at his best to stop the Penguins.
The Bruins are 2-1 since their extended Olympic break, including a win Saturday against the New York Islanders. This is the second game of a brutal seven-game road trip for the B’s. The black and gold better get used to it, because 11 of their remaining 19 games are on the road. However, that may not be so bad, as the B’s have won their past five road games.