Talking Points: Rough night defensively for Krejci
Derek Stepan was a dominant figure for the Rangers, finishing with a goal and three points along with a plus-1 in 16:19 of ice time, and it was the playmaking center that finished off a backbreaking shorthanded goal in the first period. He then made the cross-ice pass to Pavel Buchnevich for the dagger score in the third period. Stepan is one of a number of Rangers players that give the Bruins fits with their speed, and he used it to full effect on Saturday night in all phases of the game. Stepan was merely average in the face-off circle and his goal was his only shot on net, but it was his passing and playmaking that really sunk the Bruins.
David Krejci generated some offensive chances and seems like he’s starting to feel a little confident with the puck, but he was a liability on the ice defensively for pretty much the entire game. It was Krejci that coughed up the puck at the end for the Michael Grabner goal that served as last rites for the B’s on Saturday night. It was also No. 46 that screened Tuukka Rask, while being unable to catch a puck he stabbed at with one of his gloved hands, for New York’s first goal that started a big momentum swing their way. Krejci was a minus-3 in all for the game, and was part of a Bruins power play unit that couldn’t have been worse at managing the puck against a speedy New York attack. The Bruins need Krejci to start playing more like the vintage version of himself, and he still wasn’t doing that on Saturday night.
The opening goal of the second period for the Rangers was a shorthanded strike, and effectively served as the gut punch the Bruins couldn’t come back from. Kevan Hayes ended up finishing things off by getting a five hole goal through Tuukka Rask, and the B’s were sent scrambling after their power play unit allowed a second goal on the night. The Bruins ended up righting things later in the period with some chances and even scored a David Pastrnak goal in the third period to get within a couple of scores, but the game was lost in the middle 20 minutes when the B’s power play couldn’t atone for their earlier sins.
Once again Patrice Bergeron looked strong and good while throwing seven shots on net and 10 shot attempts overall in his 16:52 of ice time. He also scored the game’s first goal for his second tally of the season on a slick dish from Brad Marchand, and won 12-of-21 face-offs while generally playing a strong game at both ends. The problem is becoming that the Bruins are far too dependent on Bergeron, David Pastrnak and Brad Marchand to produce all of the offense as they did again on Saturday night. It’s time for some other players on the Bruins roster to start chipping in more than a little bit. But Bergeron is finally starting to look healthy, and that’s a good development for the Black and Gold.
BY THE NUMBERS
3-of-4 – the number of games that the Bruins have lost this season at home, with a 2-1 win over the New Jersey Devils serving as their line victory. The Bruins have been outscored 15-6 in those four home dates at TD Garden.
QUOTE TO NOTE
"I don't know if I want to call (the power play) sloppy, but it certainly wasn't good enough tonight to help us win.” – Claude Julien, discussing his 30th ranked power play that allowed two shorthanded goals in a 5-2 loss.