Bruins-Maple Leafs Live: B’s Special Teams Comes Up Big, Boston Edges Leafs 3-1


Patrice Bergeron, Nikolai KuleminFinal, Bruins 3-1: That’s it, and that’s all. The Bruins win 3-1.

Third period, 19:38, Bruins 3-1: Just as he did the last time these two teams met, Patrice Bergeron has two goals.

He just scored the empty-net goal to push the lead to 3-1 after Loui Eriksson outworked Dion Phaneuf in the Toronto zone.

Third period, 17:50, Bruins 2-1: The Bruins were able to kill off the penalty, as they got physical with the Leafs.

A couple of big hits — one from Dennis Seidenberg and the other from Zdeno Chara — set the tone for the 18th straight penalty kill.

Third period, 15:24, Bruins 2-1: The Bruins are going to have to work for it.

Carl Soderberg was just called for a crucial holding the stick penalty late in the third period. If the penalty wasn’t called, the Bruins would have had at worst a 2-on-1 with Loui Eriksson and Patrice Bergeron going the other way, but it didn’t work out that way.

It was tough to see from here if it was the right call, but he certainly looked to get tied up. Regardless, the Bruins will have to kill this one off if they want to keep the lead. Duh.

Third period, 10:15, Bruins 2-1: The boarding penalty to David Krejci did not come back to hurt the Bruins, as they were able to kill off the penalty. They have now killed off 17 consecutive penalties.

Brad Marchand had a scoring chance late in the penalty and as it expired. He tried to corral a puck into the Toronto zone that would have given him a great scoring chance, but he couldn’t quite settle the puck. He skated around the net and came back into the slot where he got the puck again and put a shot on net that James Reimer stopped.

Third period, 8:08, Bruins 2-1: The Bruins will have to kill off another penalt.

David Krejci just boarded Jerred Smithson deep in the Boston zone. It was a dangerous-looking hit that Krejci apologized for, but that’s not enough to keep him out of the box.

Third period, 7:16, Bruins 2-1: The Bruins look like the Bruins we saw in the first period, which is good news for them. They’re starting to tilt the ice again, and they’re ousthooting and out-chancing Toronto here in the third period.

Carl Sodeberg just had a chance to make it a 3-1 game after a Nazem Kadri turnover, but James Reimer made a nice glove save to keep it a one-goal game.

Third period, 3:38, Bruins 2-1: Jarome Iginla just came close to finishing off a Gordie Howe hat trick.

He had a great chance in front on a pass from Milan Lucic, but James Reimer made the save as he closed down the five-hole before Iginla could find the back of the net.

As the play came to an end, Iginla got tied up with Dion Phaneuf and dropped his former teammate with a little shove at the end of the play.

Third period, 1:06, Bruins 2-1: The Bruins just cashed in on the power play.

Thanks to some good work down low from Carl Soderberg, the B’s were able to get a loose puck in front with James Reimer laying in the crease. That’s when Patrice Bergeron jumped into the slot and scored the easy put-back goal to give the B’s the 2-1 lead.

Third period, 0:01, 1-1: The third period is underway and it should be a good one.

The Bruins have 2:20 of power-play time to begin the period.

End second period, 1-1: The second period just came to an end with no real good chances on the power play for the Bruins. They will start the third with 2:20 of power-play time left after James van Riemsdyk’s double-minor for high sticking.

The Leafs are actually outhooting the Bruins 25-24 after two periods.

Second period, 18:20, 1-1: The Bruins will have a chance to get the lead back here late in the period.

James van Riemsdyk is in the penalty box for high sticking and the B’s will look for their second power-play tally of the night. It’s actually a four-minute double-minor, so it’s possible Boston opens the third on the power play as well.

Second period, 16:52, 1-1: Given the way Toronto has played this period, it was just a matter of time.

Joffrey Lupul just ripped a shot from the right wing that beat Tuukka Rask short side to tie the game. Lupul came flying in with a head of steam that was pretty much a 1-on-3.

That’s Lupul’s eighth of the season.

Second period, 16:00, Bruins 1-0: The Maple Leafs have done a really nice job of weathering that early storm from the Bruins.

The Leafs are outshooting Boston 14-7 in the second period and have done a really nice job of possessing the puck, which is something to be said given their deficiencies in that area this season.

Tuukka Rask remains sharp, and he, plus that early power-play goal in the first period, are what separates the two teams at the moment.

Second period, 12:23, Bruins 1-0: The pace is starting to pick up just a little bit here in the second period, and it’s opening up the ice for both teams.

Carter Ashton just carried the puck into the Boston end and put a shot on net from the right wing that Tuukka Rask stopped with his right arm. The B’s quickly scooped up the rebound and went back the other way with speed. Loui Eriksson got out in front before dropping the puck to Patrice Bergeron who fired from the right faceoff circle. James Reimer made the save, though, and it remains a 1-0 game.

Second period, 9:51, Bruins 1-0: The Maple Leafs are starting to fight back and not necessarily in the literal sense.

The Leafs have started to gain control of the puck int he Boston end, and they put four shots on goal in the last two minutes or so. Unfortunately for them, though, Tuukka Rask has been up to the task so far.

The goalie has made 16 saves in this one, a good amount of them within the last few minutes.

Second period, 5:00, Bruins 1-0: It’s certainly been a physical affair thus far.

James van Riemsdyk just took out his own teammate Phil Kessel after attempting to land a big check on Brad Marchand. Minutes later, Dion Phaneuf connected with a big, clean hit on Daniel Paille as the Bruins forward carried the puck into the Toronto zone. After that hit, Gregory Campbell challenged Phaneuf to a fight, but the Toronto defenseman declined.

Second period, 0:45, Bruins 1-0: Jarome Iginla has done a nice job of endearing himself to Bruins fans, and he’s doing it with his fists.

Iginla just dropped the gloves for the third time this season, as he fought David Clarkson here in the opening minute of the second period. Pretty even fight with just a few punches that were actually landed — entertaining, nonetheless.

Second period, 0:01, Bruins 1-0: The second period is underway.

End first period, Bruins 1-0: The first period just came to an end and not a minute too soon for Toronto. They were thoroughly dominated by a Bruins team that looks like it’s playing with a purpose tonight.

The Bruins outshot the Maple Leafs 14-7 in the first period.

First period, 15:27, Bruins 1-0: You have the puck in the attacking zone as long as the Bruins have, and eventually you’re going to score.

Jarome Iginla just did Yeoman’s work in the offensive end, and that ended with the Bruins’ first goal of the evening. Iginla carried the puck into the slot and then backhanded it to Zdeno Chara who was set up in front. Chara slammed it home to give Boston the 1-0 lead.

First period, 14:13, 0-0: As far as shifts that don’t produce goals go, you probably won’t see any better than what the Bruins just showed. The B’s first line just possessed the puck for what seemed like five minutes there, but they could not score the game’s first goal. Dougie Hamilton did a great job of stepping around a couple of defenders before dishing the puck to Jarome Iginla, but the winger fanned on the chance.

A few moments later, however, Jay McClement was called for a penalty at the end of what must have been a painfully long shift.

This will be the Bruins’ first power play of the evening.

First period, 11:36, 0-0: The Bruins were able to kill off the penalty to Johnny Boychuk, despite a few shots on goal from the Maple Leafs.

The Bruins had to do so without Adam McQuaid whose night might be over. McQuaid seemed to suffer some sort of right leg and/or hip injury a few minutes ago before taking a spill in the Boston end.

He had to be helped off the ice, and he wasn’t putting any weight on his right leg in the process.

The Bruins were forced to use Torey Krug and Dougie Hamilton together on that PK, and they lived to tell about it.

First period, 9:21, 0-0: The Bruins, who have killed off 15 penalties in a row, will look to make it 16 here in the first period.

Johnny Boychuk was just called for tripping, and the Leafs get the game’s first power play.

First period, 7:37, 0-0: This is arguably the best start to a game we’ve seen out of the Bruins all season long.

They have dominated in terms of puck possession, thanks in large part to an 8-2 edge in faceoffs, something we saw plenty off during these two teams’ playoff series last season.

Boston is also outshooting Toronto 7-2, a number also helped along by the poor rebound control from James Reimer, which is also something we saw last spring.

First period, 5:00, 0-0: The Bruins are buzzing.

Jarome Iginla just tried to set up Torey Krug after the defenseman jumped into the play, but James Reimer made the save.

Iginla eventually won the puck out of the corner and carried it to the net and got a shot off of his own, but Reimer covered up before Iginla could stuff it home.

First period, 1:48, 0-0: It didn’t take long for the gloves to drop.

Adam McQuaid just threw down with Frazer McLaren in the neutral zone for the first bout of the night. It looked like McLaren got the best of the fight, but McQuaid did come back late with some heavy right hands. That was a lengthy scrap if nothing else.

First period, 0:01, 0-0: Let’s rock and roll. The game is underway.

7 p.m.: Morgan Rielly and Colton Orr will be the scratches for the Maple Leafs, while Jordan Caron and Matt Bartkowski will sit for the Bruins, as previously expected.

6:40 p.m.: It does not look like the Bruins will be making any lineup changes for this one. It appears that Matt Bartkowski and Jordan Caron are once again the healthy scratches.

With that in mind, here the projected lines for the Bruins in this one.

Milan Lucic — David Krejci — Jarome Iginla
Brad Marchand — Patrice Bergeron — Loui Eriksson
Carl Soderberg — Chris Kelly — Reilly Smith
Daniel Paille — Gregory Campbell — Shawn Thornton

Zdeno Chara — Johnny Boychuk
Dennis Seidenberg — Dougie Hamilton
Torey Krug — Adam McQuaid

6:30 p.m.: The two teams have taken the ice for pregame warmups. The goaltending matchup will be Tuukka Rask going for the Bruins and James Reimer getting the start for Toronto. Not much surprise on either end with Rask and the B’s having Friday off and Jonathan Bernier starting Friday night for Toronto.

6 p.m.: Welcome in to TD Garden where we’re a little more than an hour away from hockey.

This should prove to be a good test for the Bruins who have done some damage in the division this season but have yet to face Toronto or Montreal. That will obviously end tonight when the Bruins take on the Maple Leafs.

It will be worth keeping an eye on what the Bruins’ penalty kill is able to do tonight. After some early-season struggles on the PK, the B’s have bounced back to kill 15 straight, including four against Florida. They will certainly get a test in this one against the Leafs. Toronto comes in with the league’s fifth-best power play, which is clicking at 22.8 percent success rate. The Leafs’ penalty kill has been pretty good, too, coming in having killed 86.2 percent of their penalties, also good for fifth in the league.

Also of “note” from tonight’s game notes:

Patrice Bergeron has won 60.2 percent of his faceoffs since the beginning of the 2011-12 season. That’s the best in the NHL ahead of Jonathan Toews who comes in second at 59.3 percent. Bergeron is currently fourth in the league in faceoff efficiency.

David Krejci has a point in 12 of 15 games this season.

8 a.m. ET: The last time the Toronto Maple Leafs were in Boston, their series came to a brutal finish. Despite holding a three-goal lead late in the third period, Toronto fell victim to a furious Bruins comeback that set the stage for Patrice Bergeron’s game-winner in overtime.

So when the Leafs take the TD Garden ice for the first time on Saturday night since that game, they will probably be looking for a little bit of payback. It’s likely the Bruins will be ready.

Boston and Toronto will meet for the first time this season and the first time since the Bruins dispatched their Original Six rival in the first round of last year’s playoffs. The grueling seven-game matchup proved to the Bruins and the rest of the league that the Leafs were ready to be a threat again. The Leafs have hit the ground running this season are among the Eastern Conference’s top teams despite dealing with some injuries in the first few weeks. They’re especially thin at the center position right now with Dave Bolland and Tyler Bozak out with injuries.

The Bruins, meanwhile, are still trying to find their way. After losing four of five, the B’s bounced back Thursday night to take a 4-1 win over the lowly Florida Panthers, a game that ultimately cost Panthers coach Kevin Dineen his job. Now Boston will look to build on that in the midst of this five-game homestand in the team’s first game against Toronto this season.

Puck drop from TD Garden is set for just after 7 p.m.

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