BOSTON — Bruce Cassidy knows something needs to change in order to get the Boston Bruins to score.
His team dropped its third straight game Thursday night in a disappointing 3-2 overtime defeat to the Philadelphia Flyers at TD Garden on Thursday night. David Pastrnak notched the Bruins’ two goals, and while he, Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron have been a force as the NHL’s top line this season, Cassidy is ready to see more secondary scoring, as well as fewer mistakes from the back end.
“More self-inflicted damage from the back end tonight. Very disappointed,” Cassidy said after the game. “That group, the ability to identify what’s going on, time and score. To give up a breakaway (to Claude Giroux) in the last minute (of the first period), get caught up ice. …We have to fix it. The guys have to decide if they’re going to play the right way and buy in and understand what we are right now. If we’re scoring five goals a night, you get a little different animal. You can overlook some of those things. We’re not in that position right now. Hopefully we are at some point. But we’re not there right now.”
Another area Cassidy did not shy away from was blocked shots, noting his squad practices to recognize where the coverage will be in order to avoid getting a shot blocked by the opponents.
“That’s a play we probably practice twice a week,” Cassidy said, “where the puck comes from the half wall to the offside D. Most of the time the forwards on the other team are on that side of the ice … so you roll away from it. … Unfortunately, we rolled right back into their coverage, shot it and got blocked. … it’s on the individual. We practice that, to recognize where the coverage is, roll outside and get your shots through. It didn’t happen. And Tuukka (Rask) had to bail us out on that.
“So again, talking about some mistakes in the back end that are increasing here, and we have to put the brakes on in a hurry. It’s up to the leaders back there, it’s up to me and it’s up to (assistant coach) Kevin Dean. We have to straighten this out now because we’re not scoring enough to get away with it.”
The Bruins will need to quickly figure out how to either score more or put an end to the many mistakes as they get set to face the Washington Capitals on Sunday. And while the defending Stanley Cup champs are in a slump, Boston has yet to win in its last 14 meetings with them..
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images
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