BOSTON — The Boston Bruins defeated the New York Rangers 3-1 on Saturday afternoon in what could be a playoff preview.
More importantly than the outcome, were the reinforcements the team received for the game. David Pastrnak, Linus Ullmark and Hampus Lindholm all returned against the Rangers.
A reporter asked Pastrnak how it felt to be back.
“It’s nice,” Pastrnak said. “It’s a nightmare for every athlete, being hurt, and I ended up playing so it was nice that I was able to come back and help the team.”
Pasta talked about how he felt some rust early but settled into the game. He didn’t take long, scoring with a few seconds left in the first period and logging an assist from Taylor Hall’s goal in the second.
“The first period was a little rusty but the goal helped me shake things off,” Pastrnak said.
After his first game back from injury, the 25-year-old forward did not say he felt 100% when asked, and instead talked about how at this point in the season everyone is a little banged up.
“At this point, at the end of the season, it’s long, so everybody is playing through some injury so obviously just battling through and can’t wait for the playoffs,” Pastrnak said.
Here are some more notes from Bruins-Rangers
— Ullmark did not feel or play rusty in his return to the net.
“We’re so far into the season so everything is kind of in place,” Ullmark said. “I was just out like a week so no I wasn’t worried at all.”
— Pastrnak scored his 500th point at 25 years old, the third fastest Bruins player to do so.
“Who are the first two? Cassidy asked when talking about the achievement. “Bobby Orr and Ray Bourque,” a reporter answered. “Alright well that’s pretty good company for David,” Cassidy said. “(I’m) not surprised. High offensive skill, for him it was a matter of growing into his body at a young age. He’s put all the work in, in the gym to be strong on pucks. He gets targeted every night so to be able to sustain it is a credit to what he’s done off the ice. On his way to 600.”
“It’s nice,” Pastrnak said. “If you told me as a kid then I wouldn’t believe you. Obviously, I’m very humble about it and happy. It’s something you look back to and will enjoy with your family and friends. It’s nice but at the same time, there’s other goals I have in my mind.”
— The Bruins have not had as dynamic of a defensive pair as Charlie McAvoy and Hampus Lindholm under Bruce Cassidy’s tenure, which is helping upfront.
“The first shift of the game, I think it was Lindholm in front of our net, (he) throws a little sauce into the middle and we’re gone three-on-two,” Cassidy said. “Those are the plays that some defensemen are capable of making in this league and some are not and that’s going to change the dynamic, the way he moves the puck. That shouldn’t change whether he’s with Charlie or (Brandon) Carlo.”
“…I think the initial first pass no matter who he’s playing with, we’ve seen a noticeable difference in our group,” Cassidy said.