Krejci spark not enough in 3-2 OT loss
It was all going so well. The Bruins special teams had them out in front of the Western Conference-leading Anaheim Ducks, 2-1 with a minute left to play.
Then the wheels came off.
Flew off, actually, in the kind of fashion Bruins fans have become too acquainted with during a season of peaks and valleys, but mostly craters. Add this game to the third category.
Corey Perry deflected in the game-tying goal with just 39 seconds remaining. As he came across the crease, Perry just barely nudged the arm of Tuukka Rask as he positioned himself atop the crease with Ryan Getzlaf’s point shot barreling in.
GIF: Overhead look at the contact on Perry’s game-tying goal pic.twitter.com/bnVAK2xFif
— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) March 27, 2015
The Bruins would not get the goalie interference call they hoped for, and you can probably figure out the rest from there.
In overtime, the Bruins would survive a 4-0n-3 man advantage after a one-handed hooking call against Zdeno Chara, but minutes after the penalty expired, Getzlaf fired one over the shoulder of Rask for the game-winner and denied the Bruins a crucial point.
Claude Julien was upset after the game with the way things went down regarding the game-tying goal.
“It is really disappointing that goal was allowed,” he said after the 3-2 overtime loss. “That is why they talk about reviewing those kinds of goals and coaches challenges because you can’t allow those types of goals.
“That was a big point we lost tonight on a missed call. Those things are hard to swallow.”
The Bruins do pick up a point in the loss however, tying them in the Eastern Conference standing with the Ottawa Senators for the second wild card spot after the Sens were handed a shellacking by the New York Rangers, losing 5-1. However, the Sens still have a game in hand on the Bruins.
Beyond the loss, it was a night of bright spots for a scuffling Bruins team.
David Krejci returned to the lineup after missing 15 games with a partially torn MCL. Placed on wing alongside Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand, the 28-year-old flashed speed and agility in his first game back.
Krejci also settled nicely back into his role as point man on the power play, assisting on both of the Bruins power play goals. He finished with 19:45 TOI.
Despite a handful of games when the Bruins had a surplus of centers when Tyler Seguin was still in Boston, Krejci has spent the majority of his 542 career games playing center. Still, he showed no hesitation to play along the boards.
“As the game went along I felt better and better,” said Krejci, who led all Bruins forwards in ice time after two periods.
“It’s always a huge help to get him in and see him playing again,” said Loui Eriksson, who gave the Bruins a 2-1 lead in the third. “He makes things out there look easy sometimes. It was definitely nice to have him back. I thought he played a pretty good game.”
The team played a pretty good game, especially defensively. With the exception of a hiccup by Matt Bartkowski that led to Patrick Maroon’s second period goal, the Bruins shut down one of the best forward lines for most of the game. Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf were kept quiet until the very end.
With eight games left in season, the time for moral victories is over.
“We need results,” said Chris Kelly. “That’s ultimately, at the end of the day, what we’re playing for. Yeah we defended much better, but we’re still losing a point.”
The loss makes it six straight for the Bruins, who will play the red hot Rangers on Saturday.
The Bruins got a little help in the standing from the Sens tonight, but it is time for the Bruins to either start helping themselves or start cleaning their golf clubs.
Follow Mike McMahon on Twitter @McWham