Bruins Live Blog: Zdeno Chara’s Late Goal Lifts B’s to 4-3 Win in Washington As Boston Takes 2-1 Series Lead


Bruins Live Blog: Zdeno Chara's Late Goal Lifts B's to 4-3 Win in Washington As Boston Takes 2-1 Series LeadFinal, Bruins 4-3: The Bruins hold on for the victory and take a 2-1 lead in the series with a victory in the first game down in Washington.

Alex Ovechkin hit Rich Peverley at the buzzer, sparking yet another scrum before things calmed down. Nicklas Backstrom received a match penalty during that fracas, which means he will face an automatic suspension for the next game pending a review. Knowing the NHL's track record for suspending stars, though, there's a good chance that Backstrom won't actually end up sitting out any games.

The Bruins will have a chance to take a commanding lead in the series when they play again in Washington, with Game 4 on Thursday.

Third Period, 18:07, Bruins 4-3: The Bruins take the lead during the 4-on-4 as Zdeno Chara blasts in a shot from the right circle.

Chara scores on a one-timer that appeared to have possibly tipped off Seidenberg or Capitals defenseman Roman Hamrlik, but Chara gets the goal for now, and the Bruins have the lead.

Third Period, 17:34, 3-3: Things get nasty in a scrum in front after a Holtby save. Milan Lucic and Matt Hendricks try to go, but the linesman jumps in, then Karl Alzner jumps Lucic from behind. That brings everyone in, with Lucic going back after Alzner. Lucic gets the extra penalty out of all that, putting the sides at 4-on-4.

Third Period, 16:46, 3-3: The Capitals commit a costly penalty late as Nicklas Backstrom gets called for cross-checking after shoving Brad Marchand into the boards from behind.

Third Period, 14:00, 3-3: The Capitals pull even on a brutal defensive breakdown by the Bruins, who let Brooks Laich get alone behind them for a breakaway.

Laich swoops in down the right wing, cuts across the front of the net and roofs the shot at the left post for the equalizer.

Third Period, 12:17, Bruins 3-2: The Bruins come through with the crucial kill, with Johnny Boychuk helping Thomas with a key block in front early in the power play.

Third Period, 10:17, Bruins 3-2: The Bruins will have a huge penalty to kill here midway through the third as Dennis Seidenberg goes to the box after taking out Nicklas Backstrom going along the wall. Seidenberg gets a roughing call on the play.

Third Period, 8:02, Bruins 3-2: Zdeno Chara takes a high hit from Matt Hendricks. Chara loses his helmet and appears a bit shaky going back to the bench. Replay shows Hendricks caught Chara up around the face with his stick on the followthrough of his hit, but no penalty was called.

Third Period, 5:01, Bruins 3-2: The Bruins can't take advantage of that power play despite a couple near misses, and the sides are back at even strength.

Third Period, 3:01, Bruins 3-2: The Bruins now go on the power play as Jason Chimera gets the only penalty out of a scrum in the Boston crease. He gets two for slashing after some stickwork that left Brad Marchand down on the ice and in pain for several minutes.

Third Period, 1:02, Bruins 3-2: The Bruins take their first lead of the game and first lead in regulation in the series as Brian Rolston bangs in a rebound.

Dennis Seidenberg began the play with a deep pinch in. It eventually led to a scramble in front, with Rolston finishing a second-chance bid from the left crease for the goal.

Third Period, 0:00, 2-2: The final frame is under way down in Washington, although it's probably not safe to assume this will be the final period as the clubs are tied 2-2 and have gone to overtime in each of the first two games in the series.

Second Intermission Notes: The Bruins scored as many goals in the second period as they did in the first two games combined but still don't have a lead to show for it as it is 2-2 heading into the third.

Boston still does not have any production from its top two lines, as the goals came from Rich Peverley while skating with Chris Kelly during a 4-on-4 and fourth-liner Daniel Paille. Paille's goal was a rebound in front and shows what the Bruins need to do more of in creating chances in close with a better net-front presence.

Boston continues to play physically. The Bruins have a 42-23 edge in hits, and every Bruin except Greg Zanon has at least one hit. An even dozen have multiple hits, led by Milan Lucic's six and Zdeno Chara's five. Boston also did much better on draws, going 18-8 in the second to improve to 27-22 (55 percent) overall on the night. Washington does have a 21-19 edge in shots (14-11 in the second), but blocked shots are even at 12-12 in a major change from the first two games, when the Capitals dominated that stat category.

End Second Period, 2-2: The middle frame comes to a close down in Washington, where the Bruins rallied twice to tie it up and will head to the third deadlocked 2-2.

Second Period, 17:39, 2-2: The Capitals threaten again with Jay Beagle getting the point-blank chance in front from the top of the crease, but Thomas comes up with a huge stop to keep this one tied.

Second Period, 13:41, 2-2: The sides will be skating 4-on-4 again after tempers flare before the faceoff, with Milan Lucic first jawing with Jason Chimera, then shoving Brooks Laich to the ice. Lucic and Laich each get two for unsportsmanlike conduct.

Second Period, 9:38, 2-2: The Bruins pull even again as Daniel Paille provides an unlikely source of offense.

Greg Zanon sent the initial shot in from the left point, and Paille banged home the rebound in front to tie it.

Second Period, 8:36, Capitals 2-1: The Caps with a couple near misses with a shot off the crossbar, then a Semin shot just wide off the ensuing faceoff that Thomas never saw. Washington threatening to break this one open as the Bruins have been uncharacteristically sloppy in this period.

Second Period, 8:03, Capitals 2-1: The Bruins threatened on the 4-on-4 with a bid in front by Pouliot but couldn't muster anything on the power play as the sides are now back to even strength.

Second Period, 6:03, Capitals 2-1: The Capitals squander that power-play chance as Nicklas Backstrom is called for tripping up Seidenberg. Barring any further calls, it will be 4-on-4 for 1:15 before the Bruins get a brief power play of their own.

Second Period, 5:18, Capitals 2-1: The Bruins will be shorthanded again as Rich Peverley is sent to the box for hooking down Alexander Semin. Semin went down pretty easy, but Peverley can't afford to get his stick in that position.

Second Period, 4:19, Capitals 2-1: The Bruins are trying to come up with their own answer, but Holtby seems to have settled down after allowing that quick goal. He snares a Benoit Pouliot bid from the slot with a glove save there.

Second Period, 0:48, Capitals 2-1: The Caps answer right back as Alex Ovechkin gives Washington the lead 13 seconds after Boston ties it.

Ovechkin chases down the puck and fires in a slapper from the right circle past Thomas.

Second Period, 0:35, 1-1: The Bruins make use of the extra space as Rich Peverley criss-crosses at the top of the zone and fires in a shot off Holtby's glove and in from up high on the left wing.

Second Period, 0:00, Capitals 1-0: The middle frame is under way down in Washington, and it will begin 4-on-4 as Milan Lucic got a roughing call and Nicklas Backstrom a cross-checking minor for the scrum at the end of the first.

First Intermission Notes: The Bruins' offensive struggles continue as Boston goes another period without a goal despite a pair of power-play chances. Boston is now 0-for-8 on the power play in the series, while Washington finally broke through on the man advantage for the only goal of the game.

Boston has a slim 8-7 edge in shots. The Bruins have avoided the Capitals' shot blockers better in this one (5 blocked shots in first). The problem is they seem to be doing so by shooting less.

They are hitting more, with a 27-19 edge there. Milan Lucic leads with four, and 14 different Bruins have been credited with hits. Alex Ovechkin still leads all players with five, though. The Bruins are also just 9-for-14 on draws (39 percent).

End First Period, Capitals 1-0: The opening frame comes to a close with Washington holding the one-goal lead as the Bruins continue to struggle to solve Braden Holtby and the Capitals' defensive system.

The final whistle produces a lengthy scrum, but cooler heads prevail without any actual fights breaking out.

First Period, 19:22, Capitals 1-0: The Bruins had some better pressure late in that power play but still can't convert as the sides return to even strength.

First Period, 17:22, Capitals 1-0: The Bruins will get another chance to score a power-play goal of their own and pull even in this one as Keith Aucoin is sent off for tripping.

First Period, 16:00, Capitals 1-0: The Capitals strike first with the first power-play goal by either team in the series as Alexander Semin scores.

Semin fired in a wrist shot from the high slot as Brooks Laich, and Andrew Ference, provided the screen in front of Thomas.

First Period, 15:31, 0-0: The Bruins will be shorthanded for the first time in this one, and they'll be without one of their key penalty killers as Zdeno Chara is sent to the box for roughing.

First Period, 12:17, 0-0: The Bruins with another bid as Milan Lucic goes end-to-end on a rush, only to be robbed by Holtby.

First Period, 11:36, 0-0: The Bruins do a good job clearing the puck as the Capitals put some pressure on Boston, which was caught at a disadvantage after Greg Zanon broke his stick.

First Period, 8:53, 0-0: The Bruins with their best chance yet as Shawn Thornton fires a dump-in on goal and Daniel Paille has a chance at the rebound in front, but Holtby breaks it up by losing control of his stick. No penalty was called on Holtby despite him appearing to throw the stick rather than simply losing his grip.

First Period, 6:16, 0-0: The Bruins have mixed up their top line a bit. David Krejci was skating between Brad Marchand and Tyler Seguin on that last shift as Boston continues to search for some kind of offensive spark.

First Period, 4:27, 0-0: Seidenberg returns the favor on Ovechkin, repaying his earlier hit with another big collision, this time initiated by Seidenberg in the Washington zone.

First Period, 3:14, 0-0: The Bruins can't do much with that power-play chance, struggling to set up in the Washington zone as they go to 0-for-7 on the power play in the series.

First Period, 1:14, 0-0: The Bruins get an early power-play chance as Alexander Semin goes off for tripping Brad Marchand. Boston is 0-for-6 on the power play so far in the series.

First Period, 0:26, 0-0: Ovechkin sets the tone early with a huge hit that levels Seidenberg inside the Bruins zone on the opening shift of the game.

First Period, 0:00, 0-0: Game 3 is under way down in D.C., where the Bruins will try to regain the lead in the series and the Capitals will try to maintain their hold on their newfound home-ice advantage after earning a split in the two games in Boston.

7:30 p.m.: Both teams will start this one with some tweaked lines, although it's not certain the new combinations will last for long.

The Bruins open with Milan Lucic, Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci together up front, with Dennis Seidenberg and Johnny Boychuk on defense and Tim Thomas in goal.

The Capitals counter with Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and Jason Chimera up front, Karl Alzner and John Carlson on the blue line and Braden Holtby in net.

7:20 p.m.: No changes in the team's rosters for Game 3. The Bruins have again scratched Jordan Caron and Mike Mottau, with Adam McQuaid (upper body) and Tuukka Rask (groin) remaining out. McQuaid did not make the trip to Washington.

Jeff Halpern, Mike Knuble, Mattias Sjogren, Cody Eakin, John Erskine, Dmitry Orlov, Tomas Vokoun and Michal Neuvirth are all out again for Washington.

7 p.m.: To no one's surprise, reports out of Washington have Tim Thomas and Braden Holtby leading the teams out for warm-ups.

That will be the goaltending matchup once again in Game 3 after each netminder allowed just two goals in the first two games, both of which went to overtime.

6:30 p.m.: The Bruins and Capitals are about an hour away from resuming their first-round series down in Washington.

Boston will be looking to retake the series lead and regain the home-ice advantage, but that won't be easy against what has proven a pesky Capitals squad.

Washington will have the last change this time around, which means Dale Hunter may be able to get Alex Ovechkin away from the smothering defense of Zdeno Chara and Dennis Seidenberg. That's one way Washington will look to create more offense, but the Bruins are in need of greater production as well. They have just two goals in two games, with both coming from the third line. Boston needs its top two lines to get on the board, and quickly, if the Bruins want to take control of this series.

8 a.m. ET: Two games into the opening round of the playoffs, things are just about as even as possible between the Bruins and Capitals.

The clubs split the first two games in Boston, with each team scoring just two goals so far in the tight, defensive struggles. Neither game was settled in regulation, with the Bruins prevailing 1-0 in overtime in Game 1 and Washington answering with a 2-1 win in double overtime in Game 2 on Saturday.

Now the series shifts to Washington for Game 3 on Monday night. The Bruins will look to recapture home ice by winning one away from home, but they'll need more production from throughout their lineup to do that.

Both of the Bruins' goals have come from the third line, which has carried the momentum from their strong run down the stretch. Chris Kelly scored the winner in Game 1, and Benoit Pouliot got Boston's only goal in Game 2.

The Bruins need some goals from the top two lines and the power play (0-for-6 so far in the series after finishing the regular season 2-for-21 in the final 10 games).

The Bruins defense has been strong, especially the top pairing of Zdeno Chara and Dennis Seidenberg. That duo has kept Alex Ovechkin in check in what has been a very physical matchup of elite players.

Boston won't get any additional help on defense just yet, with Adam McQuaid not making the trip to Washington. He'll remain out of the lineup with an upper-body injury. Goalie Tuukka Rask (abdominal/groin) did travel and will continue practicing with the team, but Anton Khudobin is expected to remain in the lineup as Tim Thomas' backup on Monday.

The puck drops at 7:30 p.m. Tune in to NESN to watch the game, and stay with the live blog, as we'll keep you up to speed on everything happening.

TMZ logo

© 2017 NESN