GOLD STAR: There were a number of Bruins players that stepped up in the absence of Brad Marchand against the Ottawa Senators, and one of them was undoubtedly Danton Heinen when the B’s needed a spark early. Heinen stepped into Marchand’s spot on the power play and stepped up with a PP goal after a David Pastrnak pass flipped up into the air. It was Heinen that made a sweeping one-timer whack at the puck after it took a short hop off the ice, and completely beat Mike Condon for Boston’s first goal of the evening. In all Heinen finished with the goal, four shots on net, five shot attempts, a hit and a 1-for-1 performance in the face-off circle in 15:27 of ice time. Heinen actually has some Marchand to his game as far as strength on the puck and skill go, so he is a pretty good choice to step in for him on the PP.
BLACK EYE: A tough night for Colin White, who finished with a game-worst minus-2 and no shots on net in 18:40 of ice time against the Bruins team that he grew up rooting for. White missed on a couple of his shot attempts and really wasn’t much of a factor against the Black and Gold in his first time suiting up against them. It’s kind of been that way since White got called up for the Senators with no points, a minus-1 and just four shots on net in seven games, and he’s still looking for a moment to catch his footing at the NHL level. Here’s hoping that White starts putting it together in this audition because he’s a good kid that has the goods talent-wise, but he’s a first-round pick and he’s going to get his share of opportunities no matter what.
TURNING POINT: For the Bruins it was hanging in there in the third period as the Senators had scored a game-tying goal just 20 seconds after the Bruins had notched a short-handed strike. That could have been a big momentum swing against the Black and Gold against a potentially good hockey team, but instead it was a sad sack Senators group that couldn’t capitalize on the moment. Instead Jake DeBrusk beat Mike Condon with a soft, fluttering goal that got through the backup’s equipment for the back-breaking game-winner. Boston never wavered in the third period and in the end it made all the difference in the world.
HONORABLE MENTION: Patrice Bergeron stepped up without his partner-in-crime on the ice and notched a pair of assists in the three goals produced by the Black and Gold. It was Bergeron that won a race to the puck in the third period, and pushed a pass to Tim Schaller for a shorthanded strike that factored heavily into the game’s outcome. Bergeron finished with the two assists, seven shot attempts, two hits and a takeaway in his 17:43 of ice time. Sure No. 37 had an uncharacteristically tough night in the face-off circle with an 8-for-19 performance, but he stepped up in a spot where he didn’t have his usual wing man on his left. Not that it’s surprising because it’s Bergeron, of course, but it’s certainly worth noting.
BY THE NUMBERS: 16-0-2 – Tuukka Rask has become just the fifth goalie in Bruins history to record at least one point in 18 straight games, and joins that select club with Gerry Cheevers, Pete Peeters, Frank Brimsek and Ron Grahame.
QUOTE TO NOTE: “I think our guys stuck with it, did a good job and had the will to win in the end.” –Bruce Cassidy, to NESN postgame on another Bruins win where they fell behind while giving up the first goal to Ottawa.