RALEIGH, NC Those that have followed Patrice Bergerons career know that the mild-mannered Bruins forward isnt one to drop the gloves and start throwing haymakers unless hes properly provoked.
The Selke Trophy winner and perennial Lady Byng candidate has only truly lost his temper a handful of times on the ice. But a skirmish at the end of regulation in Monday nights 5-3 win over the Carolina Hurricanes definitely qualified as the 27-year-old center found himself trading punches with 20-year-old Jeff Skinner at the end of regulation as Tyler Seguin flipped an empty net goal into the net at the other end of the ice.
The only other times Bergeron was running just as hot: during the Stanley Cup Finals two years ago when Alex Burrows took a bite out of his finger during a scrum at the end of the first period of Game 1, and a rivalry game against the Montreal Canadiens when Josh Gorges took a run at the centers head.
So it was expected that a threat to Bergerons health was at the heart of the outburst against the Canes youngster, and a review of the video from Monday night game clearly shows Skinner taking the Bs center down with a slewfoot behind the net. The take-down was violent enough that it also caused defenseman Dennis Seidenberg to trip over Skinner as he was in the act of throwing Bergeron down to the ice.
The refs never caught it because it happened well behind the play as the puck was leaving the Boston zone, and the only penalties called were roughing infractions after both players had tussled in the corner of the ice.
With only eight seconds to go in regulation both Bergeron and Skinner were escorted off the ice to their opposing locker rooms to start cooling down with the game already decided.
BOSTON – It was a nice night for Claude Julien in his return to Boston with a well-done video montage and a warm ovation from the still-appreciative Bruins fans. But that’s where it ended for the Habs coach as his hockey club pretty much no-showed for the game and rolled over in a 4-1 win for the Bruins at TD Garden on Wednesday night.
The Canadiens scored the game’s first goal just 31 seconds into the game when a Jakub Jerabek perimeter shot bounced off Zdeno Chara in front and skipped past Tuukka Rask. But it was all Black and Gold after that with David Pastrnak tying things up six minutes later, and the Bruins outshooting the Habs by a 13-7 margin in the second period while extending their lead.
This time it was Ryan Spooner taking the puck to the net and watching as his centering pass attempt bounced off Jonathan Drouin’s skate and into the net. It was three goals in his last four games for Spooner, who had to feel a pretty big sense of satisfaction at netting the game-winner against a coach he clearly didn’t see eye-to-eye with early in his B’s career.
Brad Marchand added a necessary power play strike in the third period to give Boston the insurance marker that they needed, but it didn’t really matter against a Canadiens team that was pretty lifeless for long stretches of the game.
Tuukka Rask stopped 21 shots and went into lockdown mode after the first goal allowed, but truth be told the Canadiens didn’t have much in the way of quality chances throughout the game. David Krejci added the empty net goal late in the third for icing on the cake in a pretty one-sided affair for a Boston/Montreal rivalry game.
In his return to Boston, former Bruins head coach Claude Julien gets a standing ovation for the crowd at the TD Garden.