BOSTON – The Boston Bruins took the saying ‘early and often’ quite literally at TD Garden on Monday night as they embarrassed the Washington Capitals by a final score of 7-3. The Bruins struck just 5:37 into the game on a Jake DeBrusk powerplay goal. They proceeded to tack on three more goals in the first period, and led 5-0 just 6:55 into the second period.
The Bruins, who had lost all three prior games on their four-game home stand, concluded the stretch with a massive victory. They finish the stretch 1-0-3, collecting five of a possible eight points.
The Bruins went 2-for-6 on the powerplay tonight, while they killed off all five Capitals powerplays and scored a shorthanded goal. Tuukka Rask made 37 saves for the victory, while Braden Holtby was tagged with a loss. Holtby made just seven saves on eleven shots before getting pulled after the first period.
Ilya Samsonov made three saves in 40 minutes of relief work.
DeBrusk opened the scoring with his ninth of the season. The powerplay marker came after David Krejci put a shot through traffic on Braden Holtby. DeBrusk, parked in front, jammed the loose change home to give the Bruins a lead they would not lose.
Holtby surrendered another rebound a little under eight minutes later when David Pastrnak fired a shot on goal from the wing. Holtby denied the initial bid, but Brad Marchand was there to pounce on the rebound and deposit his 19th of the season.
The goal snapped a 12-game goalless drought for Marchand.
Brad Marchand throws the monkey off his back. The goalless drought ends at 12 games pic.twitter.com/dSjyksdfIV
— Evan Marinofsky (@emarinofsky) December 24, 2019
Anders Bjork made it 3-0 when he fired a one-timer through traffic just 27 seconds after Marchand’s tally.
The onslaught of Bruins goals came to a conclussion at 18:57 with the club’s second powerplay goal of the frame. Patrice Bergeron was parked in front and left open by a struggling Capitals penalty kill. Pastrnak fired a shot off the wall that Bergeron masterfully tipped behind Holtby to make it 4-0.
The Bruins finally exercised their demons on this night. Not only did they defeat the Capitals, but they also chased Holtby. The veteran starter was lifted at the first intermission in favor of Samsonov. Although Samsonov fared far better overall, he too was beaten by a scorching Bruins attack.
Charlie Coyle made it 5-0 just 6:55 into the middle frame. His 100th NHL goal came on a shorthanded breakaway after Marchand slipped the puck through Dmitry Orlov. Coyle went backhand to forehand and snapped the shot over the glove of Samsonov to essentially put the game away.
where mom hides the christmas cookies:
Coyle makes it 5-0 Bruins. pic.twitter.com/V1m0wkJ2E7
— Conor Ryan (@ConorRyan_93) December 24, 2019
Alexander Ovechkin finally checked in with his 23rd of the season at 14:35 of the middle frame, but it proved to be nothing more than a stat-padding goal in a lost night for the Eastern Conference’s top team. Ditto Lars Eller’s redirection of a Radko Gudas shot at 15:29 of the third period.
David Krejci concluded the scoring on this night with an empty net goal at 16:50, killing the last shreds of hope the Capitals had for a comeback. Garnet Hathaway made it a two-goal game at 17:47 after a miscommunication in front of Rask, but Bergeron snagged his second into an empty net with just seconds remaining.
The Bruins return to action on Friday, December 27th. They open a home-and-home set with the Buffalo Sabres in New York at 7:00 pm. The sides conclude the set Sunday night at TD Garden.