Third period, 19:53, Jets 3-1: Good night. Blake Wheeler scores the empty-net goal and the Bruins blow another third-period lead.
Third period, 15:28, Jets 2-1: The frustations continue for the Bruins, as they come up short yet again on the power play.
The B’s are now 0-for-4 with the man-advantage. Despite a flurry of chances, the Jets were able to get a late clear of the zone and the B’s still find themselves down a goal as it’s getting late in Winnipeg.
Third period, 12:41, Jets 2-1: Fifty-seven seconds.
That’s all it took for the Jets to get their first lead of the game. This time, it’s Evander Kane who was able to jam home a rebound in front, as the Bruins weren’t able to clear the puck after Tuukka Rask failed to control a rebound.
Third period, 11:44, 1-1: Stats are for losers.
I told you earlier that the Jets were not very good — statistically — on both the power play and the penalty kill. Well, after killing two three penalties, the Jets now have something to show for on the power play as well.
Former Bruins forward Blake Wheeler gets a tip in front of Tuukka Rask, and the Jets tie it up here in the third.
Third period, 7:13, Bruins 1-0: We talked about the Patrice Bergeron line between periods, but the third period has been all about balanced play from each of the Bruins’ fourth lines.
All have turned in good shifts, and a great shift from the fourth line will put the Bruins on the power play. Daniel Paille was tripped by Grant Clitsome on a 2-on-1 with Shawn Thornton, and the B’s will get their third power play of the night.
Tuukka Rask is on his game in this one, and he just had two of his best saves right before the 2-on-1. Rask turned aside a shot from Chris Thorburn, and the Bruins goalie stoned Thorburn again on the rebound chance as well.
Third period, 1:30, Bruins 1-0: The third period is under way in Winnipeg.
Second period reaction: As many periods have been this season, the second period in this one was won by the Patrice Bergeron line.
They wasted no time getting going, as it was Brad Marchand’s goal just 8 seconds into the period, and it really kept going from there. In addition to the goal, the team defense was simply fantastic, with a couple of brilliant instances of backchecking from both Bergeron and Tyler Seguin on separate instances. They just continue to do it all, and it’s almost like they’re continuing to get better and better as the season goes on.
The fourth line has been impressive, too. The Merlot Line is once again bringing needed physicality and energy. They’ve combined for six hits and they’ve even mixed in a handful of scoring chances.
End second period, Bruins 1-0: The second period came to an end with a couple of chances on each end of the ice.
Once again, this one has been incredibly physical and fast-paced, with the two teams combining for 37 hits through two periods. That number tends to get inflated sometimes, but this game is not one of those instances.
Second period, 18:11, Bruins 1-0: The Bruins killed off the Dougie Hamilton penalty, and they almost scored in the process.
That’s 27 straight successful penalty kills for Boston.
Second period, 15:23, Bruins 1-0: The Bruins will have to kill off their first penalty of the evening. Dougie Hamilton was just called for interference, and the B’s will have to go to work down a man.
In case you don’t believe this has been a physical affair, the two teams have combined for 32 hits so far.
Second period, 11:30, Bruins 1-0: Once again, it’s the Bruins’ second line, er, the Patrice Bergeron line, that has been the club’s best.
Brad Marchand already has one goal, and Bergeron almost made it two. The center scooped up the rebound on a Marchand shot from the slot and put a backhander at the cage, but he ended up hitting the side of the left post and the puck deflected away.
In addition to the goal, that line has had a handful of good shifts, and they look to once again be clicking on all cylinders.
Second period, 7:13, Bruins 1-0: The pace certainly hasn’t slowed at all in this one, and that’s a good thing if you’re into entertaining hockey games.
The Bruins and Jets continue to move up and down the ice, and they’re beating the hell out of each other in the process. It’s been a hard-hitting, fast-paced game that, as Jack Edwards just pointed out, is reminiscent of playoff hockey.
Tuukka Rask looks sharp right now, with a couple of strong saves, including one on former Bruins defenseman Mark Stuart.
Second period, 0:08, Bruins 1-0: That did not take very long at all.
Brad Marchand needed just 8 seconds to score in the second period, and the Bruins have the first lead of the night. Marchand was the beneficiary of a juicy bounce off the end-boards, and not giving up on the play, the puck bounced right back out to Marchand in front of the net, and he beats Ondrej Pavelec with a relatively simple backhanded move.
Second period, 0:01, 0-0: The second period is under way.
First period reaction: All in all, it was a pretty entertaining first period. You’ve got a couple of big, physical clubs, but the ice was opened up a little bit in the first period.
The Jets came out with a little more jump than the Bruins did, but the B’s were able to slow them down after the quick start. The Jets were throwing their weight around in the early going and that may have caught the Bruins off guard.
That reached a peak when Blake Wheeler walked in all alone on Tuukka Rask, but the former Bruins forward ended up ringing the post with a wrist shot. The Bruins then went down the other end of the ice and Patrice Bergeron had a scoring chance. From that chance on, the Bruins looked much more comfortable.
It looks like the power play is up to its usual tricks, however. The B’s had two chances against the 27th-ranked penalty kill, and they couldn’t do much of anything. There was too much standing around from the Bruins and the spacing wasn’t particularly effective. Add it all up and you have a grand total of zero shots on goal on the power play for Boston.
The Bruins will be without Adam McQuaid for the rest of the evening. He appeared to suffer a shoulder injury after being hit into the boards in the first, and the B’s have announced his night is over.
End first period, 0-0: A physical first period comes to an end with no score, despite a handful of chances for both teams.
The Bruins’ power play looked worse the second time around, with, in my opinion, a little too much standing around.
Also, Adam McQuaid left the ice and he has yet to return after taking that aforementioned hit early in the game.
First period, 17:06, 0-0: Winnipeg got a chance in front of the net, but there’s a reason why. That’s because Alex Burmistrov just cleaned out a Bruins defenseman in front of the net.
That’s cheating, and Burmistrov goes to the penalty box for interference.
First period, 14:01, 0-0: The Jets are getting their chances, for sure.
Winnipeg came out real strong to begin the first period, and the Bruins weathered the storm. Nik Antropov took a shot from the left-high slot a couple of minutes ago, and he was stopped by Tuukka Rask’s glove save. James Wright tried to corral the rebound, but he couldn’t as the puck jumped over his stick.
First period, 12:40, 0-0: The Bruins weren’t able to get anything on the power play, but I guess the good news is that they kept the puck in the Winnipeg zone for much of the man-advantage.
Call-up Ryan Spooner got some power-play run in the second half of the PP, and he looked pretty comfortable out there. He’s looked very comfortable through his first few shifts, actually. Playing alongside two big bodies like Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton will probably do that for you.
The pace remains relentless, with the two clubs going back and forth still. It’s also been pretty physical, and Gregory Campbell is one Bruins player who looks to be getting agitated. He’s been all over the place, and he’s taken exceptions to a couple of big hits from the Jets. Maybe he looks to drop the gloves at some point in this one.
First period, 9:29, 0-0: The Bruins will get the first power play of the evening after James Wright is called for holding Johnny Boychuk.
We mentioned earlier that there’s a lot of room for improvement for the Winnipeg special teams, and we’ll see if that plays a role here.
First period, 6:04, 0-0: Just a little more than six minutes in, and there has already been plenty of action.
Blake Wheeler nearly made it 1-0 against his former team, but the Winnipeg forward couldn’t quite find the back of the net. After beating Dennis Seidenberg to a loose puck, Wheeler skated in on Tuukka Rask and beat the goalie, but Wheeler hit the post with the shot.
On the ensuing Boston possession, Zdeno Chara took a shot from the left point that took a perfect Bruins bounce to Patrice Bergeron in the right dot. He looked to have Ondrej Pavelec out of position, but the Jets goalie recovered just in time to stop Bergeron’s one-timer.
Great pace so far in this one.
First period, 2:41, 0-0: Adam McQuaid was spilled in the corner by Eric Tangradi, and it didn’t look good for the Bruins defenseman.
He got up clearly favoring his left shoulder after falling on it into the boards. He was attended to by the training staff, but he didn’t go to the locker room. He may or may not have had his shoulder popped back into place on the bench, but that is purely speculation at this point.
First period, 0:23, 0-0: The game is on in Winnipeg.
7:30 p.m.: Not much surprise here, but the goaltending matchup is going to be Tuukka Rask in net for the Bruins opposite Ondrej Pavelec.
5:50 p.m.: There’s still ton of time until things get started in Winnipeg (darn time zones), but luckily we’re not short on things to kick around.
Bruins president Cam Neely made his weekly appearance on 98.5 The Sports Hub, and he touched on a variety of topics.
Here’s most of what he had to say.
- David Krejci is still day-to-day. Neely said he’s not sure if Krejci will play by the end of the week, but the last Neely heard, Krejci was doing better.
- Chris Kelly is also progressing nicely with his broken tibia. According to Neely, Kelly isn’t in a cast and he’s “walking really well.” Neely said that it could have been a lot worse and at this point, it’s all about just letting the bone heal.
- The latest on the Bruins’ pursuit of Swedish player Carl Soderberg: “I’m probably more confident than I’ve ever been with Soderberg. It appears that it’s as close as it’s been for him to come over here. We still have to negotiate a contract, but at least the discussions have been positive.”
- On what kind of a player Soderberg is: “He’s a big, strong, skilled forward that has a good release. He’s a big body. If he does come over here, we certainly have to show some patience with him to get adjusted to the North American game and the size of the ice surface.”
- Neely said that getting things done on the trade front has proved to be difficult. The shortened season made it difficult to make early deals, and if anything does get done, “it could be expensive.”
- On whether the Bruins are more likely to add a forward or defenseman: “I think that if we were looking at possibly one thing it would probably be adding something to the forward group. We understand there could be some limitations there. As I’ve said many times, we’re constantly looking to upgrade our team and how we get ourselves the best chances to win. We’re going to continue to do that. Obviously things will play itself out if Soderberg does or doesn’t come, and that may or may not change how we think as well.”
- The power play has improved thanks to better movement and quicker decisions. All of that has led to improved confidence, which is helping as well.
- On the prospect of using one of the team’s goaltending chips at the deadline: “I think everybody’s looking for goaltending, but we’re happy with our situation.”
3:50 p.m.: Let’s take a little more in-depth look at the Jets, shall we? Winnipeg comes in, as mentioned, tied for first place in the Southeast. That’s not much to brag about however, as three of the conference’s five worst teams also reside in the Southeast.
If the Jets are going to make a run down the stretch and get into the playoffs — winning the division may be their only hope — they’re going to have to improve on special teams. They enter Tuesday’s matchup with the Bruins with the 26th-ranked power play and the No. 27 penalty kill. That’s obviously not a very good matchup against the Bruins who have not only the league’s top PK unit, but also a power play that has come along lately.
Be that as it may, the Jets have turned things on a bit as of late. They are coming off a 4-1 loss to the Senators on Sunday, but they have won five of their last seven, with one of those losses coming in overtime. They’re about to get tested, though, as they’re in the middle of a stretch where they’re going to play nine games in 15 days.
1:25 p.m.: It likely shouldn’t come as much surprise especially given the morning skate situation, but NESN’s Naoko Funayama just tweeted that David Krejci is indeed out for this game.
1 p.m.: Judging by the morning skate, it sounds like the Bruins are going to be without David Krejci, and Ryan Spooner will make his second NHL appearance.
Krejci, who is day-to-day with a lower body injury, was not on the ice for morning skate. Spooner, who was called up on Monday, is on the ice and he’s involved in drills, according to reports out of Winnipeg. According to the team’s Twitter account, Spooner was skating on the first line in Krejci’s spot alongside Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton.
8 a.m. ET: The Bruins opened their four-game road trip in less-than-ideal fashion with a 2-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Sunday night, and they didn’t have long to dwell on things.
The B’s are back in action in frigid Winnipeg on Tuesday night where they will look to complete a season sweep of the upstart Jets. Winnipeg actually enters this game ahead of the Bruins in the Eastern Conference standings as the Southeast Division leaders, although the B’s have nine more points in two fewer games this season.
Boston is coming off its busiest week of the season, at least in terms of the calendar. But it probably doesn’t feel like much of a break, as the Bruins are in the midst of a stretch in which they’ll play 15 games in 26 days. They have survived thus far, but they have evened off some as of late. The B’s are 6-3-1 in their last 10 games. To put that in perspective, the Bruins didn’t suffer their third regulation loss of the season until the 19th game of the season.
The Bruins may also be a little shorthanded on Tuesday night. It’s unclear whether or not David Krejci will be in the Boston lineup after the center left Sunday’s game after taking a Johnny Boychuk slap shot to the leg. It looked pretty bad at first, but Boston coach Claude Julien revealed Monday that the center will be day-to-day. We’ll obviously know more as gametime approaches.
These two clubs will get things under way in the Peg beginning at 8 p.m.