The Bruins will go into the All-Star break with a bad taste in their proverbial mouth.
Boston scored first Saturday night, but squandered their lead and fell to the New York Rangers 3-2 at TD Garden in the final game before the extended break.
Danton Heinen and Brad Marchand had the goals for Boston, while Filip Chytil and Mika Zibanejad (twice) accounted for New York’s tallies.
Tuukka Rask turned away six shots for the Bruins before leaving the game late in the first period with a concussion. Upon taking over, Jaroslav Halak made 11 stops, while New York netminder Henrik Lundqvist made 28 saves.
The Bruins fall to 27-17-5 with the loss, while the Rangers climb to 21-20-7 with the win.
Here’s how it all went down:
EVEN FIRST, BUT TUUKKA EXITS
It took a little bit for the Bruins to get going on offense, but they finally cashed in thanks to Heinen.
The Bruins squandered six minutes of time on the power play in the opening period, but with less than three minutes to go, Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson did a fine job on the forecheck to get the puck off of Brett Howden’s stick deep in Boston’s attacking zone. After securing possession, Forsbacka Karlsson found Heinen dashing to the net, and the winger one-timed the first goal of the game past Lundqvist at 17:28.
New York wouldn’t trail long, however, as they equalized just over a minute later.
Chytil went coast-to-coast, beating checks from Patrice Bergeron and David Pastrnak before slipping the puck past Rask. However, as Chytil got right on the doorstep, he was bodied by Charlie McAvoy, and as a result went flying right into Rask as he scored. The Bruins goalie’s head hit the upper post before the net dislodged and his mask flew off, and after a few moments laid out on the ice, Rask exited the game. He did not return due and was diagnosed with a concussion.
The Bruins outshot the visitors 10-7 in the first 20 minutes.
RANGERS GO AHEAD
The Rangers took the lead just over a quarter of the way through the second period.
Mats Zuccarello won a face-off in New York’s offensive zone, with the puck sliding out to Brady Skjei at the point off the draw. Skjei threw a puck on the net, and Zibanejad tipped it from the slot past Halak.
New York outshot Boston 7-5 in the middle stanza.
B’S SCORE … THEN CONCEDE
Trailing 2-1 entering the third, the Bruins didn’t wait too long to level up the score.
Lundqvist gaffed by retrieving a puck that was going to be whistled for icing, and as the netminder played it behind the net, he was hounded by Bergeron and Pastrnak. Bergeron won the puck and kicked it out to Pastrnak, and after skating to the bottom of the face-off circle, Pastrnak whipped around and sent a pass to Marchand right on the doorstep. Marchand buried the equalizer at 3:24 in the third.
Boston’s joy didn’t last forever, though, as the Rangers made good use of a Zdeno Chara delay of game penalty.
While on the power play, Zibanejad uncorked a slap shot from the point. Chris Kreider had provided a nice screen in front of Halak, and Zibanejad’s shot went top shelf, sailing over Halak’s right shoulder on the way into the net, putting New York ahead 2-1 at 9:05.
The Bruins went on the power play with 4:33 left when Adam McQuaid was given an extra two minutes for roughing in a fight with Chris Wagner. Although the Bruins created a few quality chances, they couldn’t equalize.
Halak was pulled late in the game, but the extra skater couldn’t help the score a third goal.
The Bruins now will have quite a bit of time off for the All-Star break. They’ll return to action Tuesday, Jan. 29th at home against the Winnipeg Jets. Puck drop from TD Garden is set for 7 p.m. ET.
This Bruins Wrap is presented by Plainridge Park Casino.
Thumbnail photo via Winslow Townson/USA TODAY Sports Images