Bruins sweep Flyers, move to conference finals


Bruins sweep Flyers, move to conference finals

By Danny Picard

BOSTON -- @font-face font-family: "Times New Roman";p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: "Times New Roman"; table.MsoNormalTable font-size: 10pt; font-family: "Times New Roman"; div.Section1 page: Section1; The Philadelphia Flyers decided to change things up between the pipes, and started Sergei Bobrovsky as their starting goaltender in Game 4 on Friday night. But it didnt make a difference, as the Bruins got two goals from Milan Lucic and completed a four-game sweep of the Flyers with a 5-1 win at the TD Garden.

The Bs will now host Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Lucic put the Bruins up 3-1 with 4:57 left in the third period, as he finished a perfect lead pass from Nathan Horton with a low snap shot. Horton was holding the puck at the right point, and flipped a lead pass ahead to a streaking Lucic, who then skated in all alone.

Brad Marchand and Daniel Paille added empty-netters with 1:56 and 24.8 seconds left in the game.

Johnny Boychuk had previously put the Bruins up 2-1, three minutes into the third period, when his slap shot from the right point ended up top shelf.

However, the goal was scored just moments after Patrice Bergeron took a hard hit up high from Claude Giroux back in the Bruins zone, and while skating off the ice on his own power immediately after, he went straight back to the runway.

Kris Versteeg sent both teams into the third period tied at 1-1, after he came in all alone and flipped the puck top shelf while deking left, with 6:38 left in the second.

Versteeg took a nice flip pass from Mike Richards after Richards stole the puck in the neutral zone, and had Bruins defenseman Dennis Seidenberg right on his tail. Before Seidenberg could completely catch up, Richards led Versteeg in all alone.

The Bruins had previously taken a 1-0 lead into the second period, thanks to Lucics power-play goal with eight minutes left in the first. The Bs were just 31 seconds into the 5-on-4 man advantage, and David Krejci made a pass down to Nathan Horton at the left post, who then quickly through it out front to a wide open Lucic, who easily put the puck past Bobrovsky for the first goal of the game, and Bostons second power-play goal of the postseason.
Danny Picard is on Twitter at http:twitter.comDannyPicard.

Pastrnak on B's loss: "We kind of stopped playing"


Pastrnak on B's loss: "We kind of stopped playing"

BOSTON – At the end of the day, it was simply a game where the Bruins allowed themselves to get outworked in the third period and overtime. 

The B’s held a three-goal lead in the second period and still enjoyed a two-goal lead in the third period, but eventually dropped a frustrating, futile 5-4 overtime loss to the Buffalo Sabres at TD Garden on Saturday night. It was clear to most speaking after the game that the Bruins eased up on the gas pedal once they’d scored their fourth goal of the game in the second period, and simply watched as the Sabres stomped all over them in the game’s second half. 

“I think we might have been a little bit too scared to play [in the third period], you know? We tried to just flip the pucks away, and didn’t make any plays trying to get it in the zone. Instead we should have just kept going like we did in the first two periods,” said David Pastrnak, who scored a pair of goals early in the loss to allow the Bruins to build up the three-goal lead. “Obviously we’re disappointed. We got one point. I think we didn’t play our game in the third period. We kind of stopped playing and they were all over us, and you know, it’s on us. We were the ones that gave them their point, but the first two periods were good. It’s just another learning session.”

To Pastrnak’s point, the Bruins were outshot by a 15-6 margin in the final 20 minutes of regulation and 21-6 overall in the third period and overtime prior to Ryan O’Reilly’s game-winner during 3-on-3 play. It was at this point the Bruins certainly missed stalwart stay-at-home defensemen Adam McQuaid and Kevan Miller in the D-zone, and fell short of qualified penalty killers while trying to burn off a Brandon Carlo interference call at the end of the third period. 

All of that caught up to them once the Bruins loosened their grip on the Sabres, but certainly the feeling is that the loss should’ve been avoidable even if some of the circumstances made it difficult for the Black and Gold. It also should have been avoidable against a Sabres hockey club that was dreadful last season, and is again one of the doormats in the Atlantic Division in the early going thus far. 

“Those are the games you can’t lose. We obviously didn’t do the job there in the third and close it out, but we’re going to have to regroup and work on our game and be better for the next one,” said Brad Marchand. “We didn’t play the game we needed to play. We relaxed a bit and we started losing a few battles in the wrong areas, and you know, they just played better than we did.”

It’s mystifying that any team would need a crash-and-born loss like Saturday night in order to learn any lessons moving forward, and it certainly might have been a different story for the Bruins if they weren’t missing a few big defensive pieces. But that’s not how it went down for the Black and Gold as they sagged under rising pressure from the Sabres, and simply stopped working when the chips were on the table late in Saturday night’s game.