Bruins Survive Shark Attack
With .8 seconds left on the clock, the Boston Bruins (7-2-0) survived the furious attack from the San Jose Sharks (8-1-1) with a 2-1 win at TD Garden Thursday night. The Bruins handed the Sharks their first regulation loss of the season, while advancing their win streak to four games.
Deadlocked at 1-1, the game looked as if it was heading to overtime. That was until David Krejci tipped home the game winner-off Adam McQuaid’s shot from the point. Tuukka Rask kept his team in the game, turning aside 38 of the 39 shots he faced.
The Bruins looked very flat in the opening minutes of the tilt. The Sharks put heavy pressure on them early on; forcing turnovers, preventing clean Boston breakouts. Boston could not sustain an attack, only managing three shots to the Sharks’ 16. Rask stuffed all 16, but he needed offensive support.
Once the second period rolled around, the Bruins found their skating legs and began to climb back into the game. On one notable sequence, Torey Krug hit Shawn Thornton with a quick pass off the right side boards. Thornton was able to break free and ripped a slap shot from the faceoff circle. The shot beat Finnish netminder Antti Niemi, but it didn’t beat the left side post.
Tuukka Rask came up with some timely saves throughout the second, and it finally paid off for the B’s with less than two minutes remaining in the period.
As the Lucic-Krejci-Iginla charged into the offensive zone, Jarome Iginla slid the puck to Dennis Seidenberg at the point. Seidenberg ripped a shot that Krejci deflected and pinballed off Niemi in front. Iginla scooped the loose puck past him for his first Bruins goal and a 1-0 Boston lead.
The lead was short lived, as the Sharks answered back in the opening seconds of the third. The Bruins mishandled the puck in their own zone, and the puck ended up on Marc-Edouard Vlasic’s stick at the left point. He fired low on Rask, the rebound kicked out front. Patrick Marleau was right on the doorstep and tapped the puck home to tie the game at 1-1.
The Sharks continued to ramp up pressure in the period, putting 14 shots on net. Boston did a good job of forcing shots from the perimeter, allowing their goalie to see the puck well and turn aside all 14.
With less than 10 seconds left in the third, it looked as if the game was going to overtime. Milan Lucic skated the puck deep into the San Jose zone, before passing back to McQuaid at the right point. He quickly fired a wrister on net. Just as the puck reached the slot, Krejci reached out his stick and redirected the puck through Niemi’s five-hole. The 17,565 in attendance at TD Garden crowd looked up on the clock and saw 0.8 left on the clock. This goal would count, and the sellout crowd jumped to their feet to celebrate the improbable victory.
“It was just basically pretty easy,” David Krejci said of the goal. “Pretty easy but we kept it simple, Looch [Milan Lucic] chipped it in soft got the puck in the corner hit Quaider [Adam McQuaid] and knew there was not much time so he just threw it on the net and hoping for the best and luckily I was there. I put my stick on it and it went in.”
“Their goalie obviously played well tonight and made a lot of key saves for them,” Patrick Marleau of the Sharks said.” “We threw a lot of rubber at him – tough one to lose right in the last seconds. … We try not to get frustrated, try to stick with it, and he played a great game tonight. But, you know…we got to keep going the same way in order to get wins.”
Tuukka Rask said he saw the puck well against the Sharks. Check out his video below:
The Boston Bruins will play their next game Saturday night at 7:00 p.m., against the New Jersey Devils at TD Garden. The Sharks will travel to Montreal to face the Canadiens on Saturday night at 7:00 p.m.
In the Battle of the Finns, Tuukka Rask may out-battled his fellow countryman, Antti Niemi, for the #1 goaltending spot for Team Finland in the Sochi Olympics with last night’s victory. Jarome Iginla scored his first goal as a member of the Bruins. The Bruins went 0/1 on the power play, they are 4/31 this season on the PP (12.9%).