Another night, another shoot out loss, only this time to the division rival Buffalo Sabres. Really, it’s too early to get down on it, and I think the hardest part about the losses are that they should have been wins. I’ve come to dislike like the shoot out, because it seems like its a total crap chute. I don’t get aggravated the the Bruins loose in the shoot out, I get frustrated because it has to go that far. So let’s take a look at some of the reasons we had to watch another overtime game last night. I know, its up kind of late today, but just because I’m unemployed doesn’t mean I don’t have anything else to do.
Gabe and I live blogged the game over at the Fanhouse thanks to Tom Luongo, and if you are really bored you can read the replay of it. Additionally, thanks to Brett for dropping in and being the only brave commenter soul to get involved in the live blog. Realistically, if you want a recap of this game, just go re-read the Penguins home opener recap and replace Dany Sabourin with Ryan Miller and Mark Stuart didn’t have quite as good of a game this time around.
The Bruins came out firing on all cylinders, picking up right where they left off in the Penguins game. As Billy Jaffe was quick to point out, and beat to death, the Sabres have been getting off to slow starts this season and last night was no different (although Tom Luongo says their slow start in Atlanta the other night is being blow out of proportion). Overall, in the first period the Bruins looked solid from top to bottom. Manny Fernandez wasn’t tested too much in the first, but was playing sound. Both the offense and defense were playing their game and the Bruins controlled the ice for the majority of the period. Dennis Wideman opened the scoring with a blast through an immense amount of traffic. After the first, the game balanced out and was a well played game by both teams, but it seems to be the brief lapses by the Bruins (i.e. Mark Stuart’s ill timed penalty right after Phil Kessel’s power play goal), that cost them the game. The Bruins played another good game and plenty of positives of to take away, but the fear becomes are they going to come this close all year? Let’s do some bullet points.
- Gabe and I had discussed trading high on Kessel, and I know Gabe is holding out until the trade deadline to really make a decision on it, but I’m on board with keeping Kessel. The odds he stays this hot are slim, but at the start of every game I think “Oh, Kessel will come down to earth tonight” and he doesn’t. He looks like he is ready to make the step to being a complete beast, and if he can do that, the Bruins are going to give opposing defenses fits on a nightly basis.
- Dennis Wideman bounced back from what seemed to be a frustrating game against the Penguins with a solid performance. The Bruins were the second to last team in the league to have a defensemen score. Atlanta remains the only team without a defender to score. He did get burned by Drew Stafford on the second goal, but that was some NHL ’94 type shit by Stafford.
- Goalies will steal games. When its Ryan Miller, I’m okay with that, when its Dany Sabourin, not so much.
- As Eric McErlain asked us last night, “What’s up with the Bruins power play?”. They roll out two scary looking lines but the conversion rate so far has yet to amaze. Also, why is no one set up in front of the net? Although, they were the first team to score on Buffalo’s penalty kill units.
- Milan Lucic was credited with a team high three give aways last night, he also had three hits and an assist. He is looking better each game with his hockey sense and positioning. I think everyone last year got used to the super rough and tumble Lucic, and in the early stages of this season it looks as if Lucic is trying to improve his overall game. Gabe made a great point last night that there is no reason not to develop Lucic into a well rounded player, and let Shawn Thornton do the majority of the dirty work.
- Aaron Ward is still super pissed off and remember, anything he hits he destroys. Ward and Vladmir Sobotka were both shaken up by being hit by pucks, both returned to the game. Sobokta didn’t have his best game ever, but definitely brought the energy level up when he was on the ice.
- Patrice Bergeron was a monster in the face off circle last night. The Bruins as a team won 32 of 55 face offs.
- Marco Sturm celebrates every goal scored so hard. Doesn’t matter whether or not he scored, he is fucking thrilled a puck got in the net.
- The Bruins have a lot of young talent, but as we have pushed around these parts, David Krejci is going to be something special. He got robbed with a beautiful glove save from Ryan Miller, but got a small amount of revenge by smoking Miller in the shoot out. Krejci logged 19:28 of ice time last night, and played in all situations, getting 2:45 on the power play and 3:05 on the penalty kill. Sit back and enjoy watching him get better and better with every game this season.
- Craig Rivet played well last night and I would have never been able to tell you he was operating on a sore knee. As Die By The Blade informs us, Rivet will undergo arthroscopic knee surgery and be out for two weeks.
- The Willful Caboose was updating while at the game, worth a gander for the other point of view.
The Bruins take on the Toronto Maple Leafs tomorrow night at the Garden and don’t be surprised to see Manny get the start as it looks like Tim Thomas is still getting over a cold. I’m not sure if Gabe’s working but the preview tomorrow may be a little thin.