GOLD STAR: The Flyers had some standout players on Sunday afternoon, but Hart Trophy candidate Claude Giroux rose to the top with a pair of goals scored, including the overtime game-winner on a breakaway chance. Giroux finished with the two goals, a plus-3 rating and had five shot attempts in his 18:52 of ice time and bookended the Flyers scoring with the first and last goal of the game. Giroux was also all kinds of dynamite in the face-off circle winning 7-of-9 draws and otherwise played a strong game working the two-man game with Travis Konecny throughout the contest. The 95-point mark that Giroux has reached this season is a career-high for the Flyers center as he’s enjoying one of his best seasons in Philly.
BLACK EYE: It was a tough night for Adam McQuaid, who finished a minus-2 in just 13:04 of ice time and made some mistakes on the ice that led to high quality chances throughout the game. The Torey Krug/McQuaid pairing in general got into a lot of adventurous shifts on the ice where they were allowing Flyers players to get behind them, struggling to break the puck out of their own zone and at times giving up too much ground to the Flyers attacking the B’s zone with speed and aggressiveness. Certainly it felt like McQuaid and Krug were the pairing against Claude Giroux’s line on the ice every time something good was happening for Philly. It might have just been one of those days for a pair that hasn’t played much together lately after spending all of last season together, but they need to be a lot tighter defensively.
TURNING POINT: The turning point for the Bruins was simply getting the game to overtime and salvaging a point in a game where they clearly didn’t have much in the tank. With the goalie pulled, the Bruins simply wouldn’t relent while hunting the puck offensively and making a handful of plays to keep the puck in the zone while maintaining heavy pressure on Philly’s defense. It was David Krejci that made the final play to keep the puck inside the Bruins attack zone, and that set up the play where a loose puck bounced from the front of the net to Patrice Bergeron’s stick for the game-tying strike. It wasn’t enough to get the full two points, but for a gassed B’s bunch pushing things to overtime was an impressive feat in and of itself. In all the Bruins outshot Tampa Bay by a 10-8 margin while coming back again in the third period.
HONORABLE MENTION: David Pastrnak was the best of the three forwards on Boston’s top line with a power play goal in the third period that deflected off Wayne Simmonds and a team-high seven shots on net in his 21:30 of ice time. Brad Marchand managed just a single shot on net and Patrice Bergeron finished a minus-2 despite his last second heroics in the third period, but it was Pastrnak that had the good skating legs to be a threat throughout the game. Pastrnak was robbed earlier in the game of a second goal when a backdoor feed left wide open, but somehow Petr Mrazek was able to extend fully across the crease and swallow up Pastrnak’s elevated shot with a big time glove save that ranks as one of the best all season. That’s what was needed to keep Pasta from cooking up a little more offense for the B’s.
BY THE NUMBERS: 30 – the number of goals for Patrice Bergeron after scoring his last-second, game-tying strike that now gives the Bruins 30-goal scorers at all three spots on their top line with Bergeron, Brad Marchand (34) and David Pastrnak (33).
QUOTE TO NOTE: "Losing sucks. That's only what I can say." –Anton Khudobin, who clearly didn’t want to hear about moral victories after losing in overtime while giving up four goals on 24 shots in a so-so kind of effort.