GOLD STAR: On a night when the Bruins needed their best players to step up and make plays if they were going to beat the Red Wings, Brad Marchand did exactly that for the Black and Gold. Marchand kicked off an epic night with a hat trick, five points and a plus-2 rating in 19:38 of ice time while also putting up with some definite targeting at the hands of the Red Wings players coming at him. Marchand also set a Bruins franchise record with his 11th overtime game-winner, which passed Dit Clapper and Glen Murray for the top spot on the all-time list. What was perhaps most impressive was Marchand providing the final three goals for the Bruins in the game, and essentially refusing to let Boston lose in a game where they played far from their best brand of hockey.
BLACK EYE: It was a very “meh” night from Zdeno Chara where the Bruins captain was on the ice for four of the five goals against, finished a minus-2 in 25: 26 of ice time, and made some poor decisions in puck management, zone coverage and execution in clearing pucks. It seemed like one of those nights where the heavy schedule might be getting to the 40-year-old captain a little bit, and Chara somehow didn’t have even a single hit or a blocked shot while logging the most ice time of anybody in the game. Clearly the Bruins were just good enough to survive and the hope has to be that the Chara/Brandon Carlo pairing gets a little better as things move along, but it wasn’t a very good showing for them just hours after it was learned that Charlie McAvoy would be out for the next four weeks.
TURNING POINT: The Bruins are only 8-8 in overtime this season, but they’re beginning to develop a confidence and swagger when the extra session hits. It’s probably because they have an absolute OT weapon in Marchand, and he was once again in full effect crashing the Detroit net and cleaning up a Torey Krug chance for his 28th goal of the season and 66th point of the season. All the Bruins needed was 34 seconds once the overtime session started, and they were ready to dispatch a Detroit Red Wings team that really isn’t very good this season. Once it reached overtime and the Red Wings had put up a reasonable fight, it was all over for them and it was winning time for the Black and Gold.
HONORABLE MENTION: Torey Krug had an opportunity to really step up and fill in the offensive defenseman void with Charlie McAvoy out, and he did just that on Tuesday night against the Red Wings. Krug finished with two goals, four points and a plus-2 rating in 20:18 of ice time, and he was part of the early offensive boost from the Black and Gold that got things up and running for them. Krug had seven shot attempts and a couple of blocked shots as well in his night’s work, and looked pretty good in a pairing with Nick Holden that’s been put together with McAvoy missing. It certainly looked like that might be a better fit for No. 47 than the work he’d done with Carlo for most of this season.
BY THE NUMBERS: 3 – the number of assists for Nick Holden in his three games as a member of the Bruins as he’s managed to notch a helper in each of the three games that he’s played thus far.
QUOTE TO NOTE: “We know there are 82 of these [games], and it’s hard to stay in the moment for 82, and focused and not want to have a little offensive surge and trade chances. But we’re trying to play to our identity, as well. So we talked about it; hopefully it doesn’t go in one ear and out the other and we take it to heart, and build on it for our next game.” –Bruce Cassidy, knowing that the Bruins have some defensive things to work on after allowing five goals.