Bruins-Oilers Rapid Reaction: Plus-Minus
TD Garden – The Bruins reeled off four goals in the third period, overcoming a 2-1 deficit to defeat the Edmonton Oilers 5-2 on Thursday night.
A lackluster 2nd period by the Black and Gold left the door open for the Oilers, but powerplay goals from Carl Soderberg and Dougie Hamilton helped the Bruins escape with the victory.
The win marks four-in-a-row for the Bruins, who are now 5-1 without captain Zdeno Chara, who is still sidelined with an injury.
Here is tonight’s game broken down into pluses and minuses.
Reilly Smith – With linemates Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron finding their form of late, it was only a matter of time before Smith would follow suit. The winger posted his first multi-point game of the season with a goal and an assist. The goal, his 3rd of the season, could not have been placed more perfectly, slicing over the glove of Edmonton goalie Ben Scrivens and tying the game at 1-1. He would rack up his fourth assist in his last four games on Dougie Hamilton’s power play goal.
Carl Soderberg and Loui Eriksson – There should never be a time where these two are not on the ice together. Both played a vital role in the Bruins strong third period. Soderberg picked up the secondary assist on Eriksson’s third period goal, keeping the play alive upon entry in the offensive zone. Eriksson was on the ice for Soderberg’s goal off the feed from Patrice Bergeron.
Dougie Hamilton – It wasn’t a great first period for Hamilton who had a couple of close calls in the defensive zone with the puck and a pretty blatant tripping penalty. He answered the call in the third with a hand in three of the Bruins’ four third period goals, tying a career-high with three points. Hamilton has looked very good since being called on to play a bigger role without Chara, and has responded well thus far.
Matt Fraser – The winger got the call over Simon Gagne tonight and started the night next to Carl Soderberg and Loui Eriksson. Replaced by Chris Kelly in the third period, Fraser ended the night with a -1 rating and a team-low 8:53 TOI, skating only 12 shifts. After Kelly stepped into the role Fraser filled for two periods, the Soderberg line regained it’s form. It was not a good night for Fraser who is still battling to get his name in the lineup consistently.
David Krejci – The good news is that Krejci returned to action after missing two games with an undisclosed injury. After missing time to begin the season, it is evident that the center is far from midseason form. Krejci uncharacteristically picked up two penalties, a double-minor for high-sticking which led to the Oilers first goal, and a hooking penalty in the last seconds of the first period.
The 4th Line – When the Bruins have a lackluster period like they did in the second period tonight, they often turn to the 4th line to pick up the tempo and the energy, that didn’t happen tonight. Gregory Campbell was quiet with no shots and no hits while Daniel Paille registered one shot on net in 9:57 TOI.