Final, Red Wings 1-0: The Bruins weren’t able to get much of anything at the net in the final minute of the third period, and the Red Wings will get a Game 1 victory here in Boston.
Third period, 19:20, Red Wings 1-0: The Wings ice the puck, and just before the ensuing faceoff is about to take place, Mike Babcock takes his timeout to give his club a breather.
Third period, 19:00, Red Wings 1-0: The Boston net is empty.
Third period, 16:59, Red Wings 1-0: The Red Wings have broken through first. Naturally, it was Pavel Datsyuk.
The Red Wings center rushed up ice, weaved in and out of traffic and then ripped a wrist shot from just inside the blue line by Tuukka Rask that beat the goalie glove side for the game’s first goal.
Third period, 14:34, 0-0: The Bruins have upped their pressure, and we might be starting to see how those early hits have taken their toll. Much of the play for the last five minutes or so has been in the Detroit zone. That finally produced a really good chance for the Boston third line, as Justin Florek got free in the slot and just missed the net with a wrist shot.
Third period, 11:45, 0-0: Tuukka Rask might have just given a large number of Bruins fans a heart attack. The Bruins goalie came out to play the puck far out of his crease, and his clearing attempt off the glass didn’t work out. The puck was quickly knocked down by a Detroit player who quickly fired it toward the net. The puck got by Rask, but luckily for he and the Bruins, Corey Potter was there to keep it from going into the net.
Third period, 7:17, 0-0: The Bruins power play comes to an unsuccessful end, but the B’s certainly had their chances. Boston was able to get a couple of shots on goal and there was one scramble in front of the net with Jimmy Howard on his stomach, but Loui Eriksson couldn’t quite lift the puck or jam it into the net on what might have been the Bruins’ best scoring chance of the night.
Going back a few minutes, Tuukka Rask made a sensational toe save on Darren Helm. The Detroit forward got a shot from in close that Rask stopped, but Helm got his own rebound as well. That’s when Rask extended to make the pad save, arguably his best of the night.
Third period, 5:17, 0-0: The Bruins are finally getting their first power play. Tomas Tatar just dropped David Krejci deep in the Boston end, and Tatar gets called for interference.
Third period, 0:30, 0-0: Didn’t take long for the Bruins to get a scoring chance. Brad Marchand jumped on a loose puck at the Detroit blue line and walked in all alone, but his wrist shot was stopped by Jimmy Howard’s pad save.
Second period reaction: Not how the Bruins drew things up there in the second period. The Red Wings absolutely dominated the puck possession game, which is a huge factor by itself, but just as importantly, it keeps the Bruins from doing what they want to do — get pucks in deep.
Luckily for the Bruins, Tuukka Rask has been real good through 40 minutes. The B’s will have to hope that those big hits they laid in the first period start to take its toll. There’s just not a lot there for them right now.
End second period, 0-0: The second period is over, and we are without a goal. The Bruins outshot the Red Wings 7-5 in the second period, the two teams have 16 shots apiece through two periods.
Second period, 18:00, 0-0: The Bruins were able to kill off the Torey Krug penalty without much of a threat from the Red Wings, and Boston is back to full strength.
Second period, 15:58, 0-0: Once again, the Red Wings continue to do a good job of keeping the puck in the Bruins’ end for an extended period of time. It hasn’t paid off in a Detroit goal just yet, but it did earn Detroit a power play. Torey Krug was just called for holding, and the Red Wings have earned their second man-advantage of the night.
Second period, 10:34, 0-0: The Detroit attack is starting to become relentless. The last few minutes have been played just about entirely in the Boston zone. The Red Wings didn’t get any sort of real sparkling chances, but they’ve spent a lot of time playing keep-away from the Bruins, which obviously means the Bruins aren’t able to play their usual dump-and-chase game.
Second period, 7:52, 0-0: The Red Wings just responded with a couple of solid shifts that had the Bruins running around in their own end some. The best chance came when Gustav Nyquist took a shot from the left faceoff circle that Riley Sheahan got a stick on in front, but Tuukka Rask was able to smother the puck and get a much-needed whistle.
Second period, 6:16, 0-0: The Bruins have started the second period much like they did the first, and that’s with a lot of jump. The Bruins are outshooting Detroit 3-0 through the first few minutes, and the puck has spent a lot of time in the Red Wings’ zone.
The Bruins had what looked to be a heck of a chance when Jimmy Howard lost his stick a few minutes ago. The goalie lost the stick as the B’s controlled the puck in the Detroit end, but the Bruins couldn’t get the puck to the net and failed to take advantage of the situation.
Second period, 0:01, 0-0: The second period is underway.
First period reaction: The first period was yet another reminder of how awesome playoff hockey can be. Both clubs have brought their compete level up to a 10, and every puck is contested, every check finished.
If the Bruins are able sustain this high level of physical play — 17 hits in the first period — they’re going to wear down Detroit. The Bruins were looking to hit in the first period, and that helped them win a lot of puck battles. What that physicality also does is ensure that the Red Wings aren’t able to get out in space and use the speed that everyone is talking about.
On the offensive end, though, the Bruins haven’t had many Grade-A scoring chances. The first and second lines each had one late in the period right before the Zdeno Chara penalty, but other than that, it’s been a struggle to get real good looks on Jimmy Howard. The Wings are doing a nice job of keeping the Bruins out of the slot and along the walls, which means they’re also keeping the Bruins out of Howard’s face. That’s usually a recipe for success. Boston will have to get pucks and bodies to the middle of the ice if they’re going to want to break through in the second period.
End first period, 0-0: The first period is over. The Bruins were outshot 11-9 in the first 20 minutes.
First period, 18:30, 0-0: The Bruins were able to kill off the Zdeno Chara penalty. The best chance may have come just as the penalty was set to expire when Johan Franzen got a shot from the left dot, but Tuukka Rask made a blocker save.
First period, 16:08, 0-0: The Red Wings are going to get the first power play of the game. Zdeno Chara was just called for boarding after delivering a big hit on Brendan Smith deep in the Detroit zone. Looked to be a decent enough call as Smith was facing the glass the entire time.
First period, 10:12, 0-0: The Red Wings are starting to get some more sustained offensive zone time, and that’s allowed them to take a 7-5 lead in shots on goal.
Justin Abdelkader got a shot from the top of the slot that Tuukka Rask stopped, but once again, the rebound kind of got away from him.
First period, 7:50, 0-0: Brad Marchand looked to have an open net from the right faceoff circle, but Danny DeKeyser got his stick on the puck to take away the scoring chance.
First period, 6:19, 0-0: As expected, this game has had a really good pace so far. Both teams have come out with plenty of jump, and so far, it looks like the Bruins are feeding off the home crowd. The Boston forecheck has been relentless, especially the B’s first line. They have had a couple of shifts where they’ve gotten the puck in deep and gone to work. Milan Lucic is doing a tremendous job with that in the opening minutes.
The Red Wings are getting their chances, too. The teams are tied 4-4 in shots on goal, and one thing to keep an eye on will be Tuukka Rask’s rebound control. The Bruins goalie has allowed some big rebounds so far, which haven’t yet been an issue.
First period, 0:01, 0-0: The game is underway in front of a rowdy TD Garden crowd.
7:35 p.m.: The Patrice Bergeron line will start for the Bruins against Pavel Datsyuk and the Red Wings’ top line. Zdeno Chara and Dougie Hamilton start on the back end.
7:20 p.m.: As expected, the Bruins will be without the four skaters not on the ice for pregame warmups. Those players are Matt Bartkowski, Kevan Miller, Daniel Paille and Chris Kelly.
Where will the Bruins be hurt the most with those injuries? It has to be on the blue line. Corey Potter and Andrej Meszaros were brought in to be depth guys, which really means they’re the last options. And for Game 1 at least, that’s exactly what they are, as they’re inserted to the lineup.
7:11 p.m.: Here are the Bruins lines and defensive pairings, according to pregame warmups.
Milan Lucic — David Krejci — Jarome Iginla
Brad Marchand — Patrice Bergeron — Reilly Smith
Justin Florek — Carl Soderberg — Loui Eriksson
Jordan Caron — Gregory Campbell — Shawn Thornton
Zdeno Chara — Johnny Boychuk
Torey Krug — Dougie Hamilton
Andrej Meszaros — Corey Potter
7 p.m.: The Bruins and Red Wings have taken the ice for pregame warmups, and there are some B’s missing. Daniel Paille, Kevan Miller Chris Kelly and Matt Bartkowski are not on the ice, which means their respective comebacks will have to wait at least a game.
12:52 p.m.: Detroit Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock is no stranger to a couple of the most important members of the Bruins organization. Babcock recently got an up-close look at how Boston head coach Claude Julien and center Patrice Bergeron go about their business. Babcock, the head coach of Hockey Canada at the recent Winter Olympics, picked Julien to be a part of his coaching staff. Bergeron was named to that team as well and by the end of the tournament had earned top-line minutes under Babcock.
After the Wings’ morning skate ended Friday, Babcock was asked of his impressions on both.
On Julien: “He’s a good coach, he’s a good man, he’s a real good person. I’ve known him a long time. He’s coached in a lot of places and has done a good job everywhere he’s been. He’s patient. I think he knows players. I thought he was real good with me and the players on the bench in games. He gave me someone to bounce stuff off of, he gave me some ideas. He was real good with the penalty kill. We had a real good staff. Really high-end coaches who had a lot of fun and enjoyed ourselves and worked hard at the same time. I think his team is a real good reflection of that. They’ve got good leadership in Bergeron and Chara. They’re really good people and they do things right. I think that’s a reflection of the whole organization.”
On Bergeron: “Bergeron is one of the best players in the world. What Bergeron does, like Jonathan Toews, like Pavel Datsyuk, they do it right. And so they make other people do it right, not by talking, but by doing it right.”
11:50 a.m.: The Detroit morning skate is just about wrapping up, and Henrik Zetterberg was on the ice for the Red Wings. However, Zetterbeg wasn’t doing much of anything during the skate. He’s still not expected to play in this series, but you never do know.
Claude Julien spoke to the media about an hour ago, and right off the bat, the Bruins head coach was asked about whether he thought this was some sort of “David vs. Goliath” matchup.
“Not with parity,” Julien said. “I don’t think that exists anymore. I’ve been mentioning that for the last couple of days, about the percentage of upsets in the first round over the last couple of years. So it just goes to prove to you that anything can happen in the playoffs. We’ve seen it many times before and I don’t expect that to change this year also.”
Julien was then asked if that all puts the Bruins on alert heading into this series with a team like Detroit.
“Well we’ve never get comfortable,” he said. “We’ve always talked about that. No matter what we’ve accomplished, we always know that the good things happen from hard work, so the minute we stop working hard and focusing on the areas we need to focus on, things can change. So that’s always been the approach.”
10:50 a.m.: No surprise, but Bruins coach Claude Julien won’t give any updates on Chris Kelly and Daniel Paille considering, you know, it’s the playoffs. Neither players were on the ice for the morning skate, but Paille did some skating before Boston’s optional morning skate.
10:35 a.m.: Good morning and welcome into TD Garden where the Bruins have just begun what looks to be an optional morning skate. There just seven forwards, five defensemen and one goalie on the ice for the skate.
Those players are:
Forwards: Jordan Caron, Justin Florek, Loui Eriksson, Gregory Campbell, Shawn Thornton, Carl Soderberg, Reilly Smith
Defensemen: Dougie Hamilton, Andrej Meszaros, Johnny Boychuk, Torey Krug, Corey Potter
In other lineup news, Daniel Paille and Adam McQuaid both skated before practice. The fact that Paille skated before practice probably means he’ll be out for Game 1, but we hope to find out for sure in a couple of minutes when Claude Julien speaks to the media.
8 a.m.: The most wonderful time of the year has arrived, which means the Stanley Cup playoffs are about to begin in Boston.
The Bruins will open their first-round playoff series against the Detroit Red Wings on Friday night at TD Garden. The B’s and Wings will be the final matchup to get underway in the NHL’s second season after the playoffs opened in the other matchups on Wednesday and Thursday.
The Boston-Detroit series will mark the first time these historic clubs have met in the playoffs since 1957. That’s in large part due to the fact that they’ve been in separate conferences for so long. The B’s and Wings now share the same conference after the NHL’s realignment and they’ll waste no time renewing their rivalry. Friday’s game will be the fifth time this season that the Bruins and Red Wings have met. The previous four came in Atlantic Division play where Detroit took three out of four against the eventual Presidents’ Trophy winners.
The playoffs are a different animal, though, and the B’s enter the postseason as one of the favorites to win the Stanley Cup. The B’s finished with the league’s best record, thanks to a blistering finish to the season, which was sparked by a 15-1-1 showing in March. However, one of their few slip-ups down the stretch came when they coughed up a lead and lost to the Red Wings on April 2.
The Bruins’ lineup is up in the air some leading into Game 1. Both Daniel Paille and Chris Kelly missed practice all week with their respective injuries. For Paille, he’s still feeling the after-effects of a big hit against Buffalo in the final weekend of the regular season, while Kelly is still battling back spasms. Defenseman Matt Bartkowski also missed the week of practice with an undisclosed issue, which could be related to the flu bug making its way through the team. Clubs have begun their annual playoff information lockdowns when it comes to injuries, so we might get any sort of idea what their statuses are until Friday’s morning skate at the earliest.
Puck drop for Game 1 between these Original Six clubs at TD Garden is set for 7:30 p.m.