The Bruins fell to the New York Rangers on Friday by a score of 5-2, but winger David Pastrnak could have singlehandedly led Boston to victory.
Pastrnak finished the game with six shots on goal, the most of any skater in Friday’s showdown at TD Garden. But he failed to capitalize, with Craig Smith and Patrice Bergeron scoring the goals and Brad Marchand and Matt Grzelcyk credited with assists.
Speaking to reporters after the loss, head coach Bruce Cassidy did not really have an answer for Pastrnak’s scoring woes this season, but noted that it wasn’t a lack of effort that limited him against the Rangers.
“He hasn’t scored as much as he typically does, so only he can tell you mentally, is he thinking shot when he should be passing and vice versa? ” Cassidy said, via team-provided video. “He certainly hit the net on some good looks, (Rangers goaltender Igor) Shesterkin just had his number.”
Shesterkin finished the afternoon with 34 saves.
Pastrnak has six goals through 16 games this season, and while he had a run of four games without finding the back of the net earlier in the year, he did score in Wednesday’s game against the Buffalo Sabres and again Saturday against the Philadelphia Flyers.
There’s no reason to panic about his production level just yet, but if Pastrnak had been able to land even just one of his shots on Friday, it could have been the momentum swing Boston needed to avoid a three-goal third period by the visiting Rangers.
The Bruins will look to get back on track Sunday night against the Vancouver Canucks.