Matt Grzelcyk Gives Insight Into Bruins Fatal Game 5 Turnover

Grzelcyk admitted to miscommunication on the play


Apr 27, 2023

Linus Ullmark wasn’t the only member of the Boston Bruins involved in the fatal turnover that allowed Florida Panthers star Matthew Tkachuk to score the game-winning goal in overtime in Game 5 on Wednesday night.

Bruins defenseman Matt Grzelcyk also factored into the costly play, getting too close to Ullmark along the end boards and not providing an outlet for the netminder. Grzelcyk chalked it up to miscommunication between him and Ullmark.

“That was a little bit of a different situation,” Grzelcyk told reporters, per team-provided video. “Usually we have two D going over to each corner. It’s a little bit easier for the goalie to make the read. We just weren’t on the same page there, and they made a good play. Smart play to throw it to the net and had some good patience on the goal there.”

It seems as if Grzelcyk wasn’t ready for Ullmark to send the puck toward him and instead expected him to send a pass along the boards in the opposite direction.

“It was tough. I didn’t know if the puck was going to get to him,” Grzelcyk said. “It was kind of a foot race with (Carter) Verhaeghe there. He kind of had a step. Just wanted to maybe cut him off in case he got to the puck first. They had a guy on the other wall as well. So, it was a tough play all around, and like I said, they made a really good play to stick it down and throw it to the net there.”

The Panthers have made the Bruins pay for their repeated turnovers. Boston has 32 giveaways combined in its last two home games. Cleaning up those mistakes will go a long way for the Bruins in not making things easier for the Panthers.

“Obviously want to take better care of the puck,” Grzelcyk said. “I think if you’re just on the same page and communicate a little bit better it’s going to lead to taking care of those things and getting out of our own end. They seemed to feed on some of the mistakes we’ve been making. We’ve just got to play a little more simple game and our skill will take over from there.”

Despite Boston’s blown opportunity in Game 5, the Bruins still have a chance to close out the first-round Stanley Cup playoff series Friday night. Puck drop from FLA Live Arena is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. ET, and you can watch the game, plus an hour of postgame coverage, on NESN.

Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images
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