OFF THE SCHNEID! McAvoy Propels Bruins In OT
The Boston Bruins dominated for 60 minutes in Chicago on Wednesday night against the Blackhawks. For the second night in a row, however, the club ran into a hot goaltender who frustrated their offensive stars. For the second time in as many nights, the Bruins found a way to get the two points.
Jake DeBrusk broke into the offensive zone in overtime and fed a pass across to Charlie McAvoy. McAvoy tapped in his first goal of the season to get off the schneid and push the Bruins by the Blackhawks to even the season series.
Robin Lehner, even in a loss, was terrific for the Blackhawks. He stopped 38 shots while stealing his team a point. Jaroslav Halak made 21 saves for his 14th victory of the season.
The Bruins came out swinging in the first period, outshooting the Blackhawks 16-5 and carrying the pace of play. The Bruins, per Natural Stat Trick, had a 68.75% Corsi For in the opening frame and out-chanced the Blackhawks 9-5. Lehner stood on his head, keeping the Hawks even with the Bruins after a sloppy first period.
Lehner’s first period performance proved to be vital. The Hawks went to the powerplay 6:13 into the second period when David Krejci was whistled for a boarding call.
Alex DeBrincat, the elite sniper who is dealing with a down season, cashed in to get Chicago on the board. DeBrincat collected a loose puck that bounced off the stick of Kirby Dach out front and slipped it by Halak at 6:50 of the period.
It was DeBrincat’s 13th goal of the season.
The Bruins didn’t take too long to respond. After being scratched on Saturday in Minnesota, Sean Kuraly has started playing some good hockey. He was rewarded with his 5th goal of the season 12:49 into the second period. He beat Duncan Keith for a puck along the end wall to start the play. Then, he muscled his way to the slot and snapped home the marker that eventually would force overtime.
Sean Kuraly seems to have got the memo after getting scratched on Saturday.
Two points in the last two games for the forward.
1-1 game. pic.twitter.com/lBAyEszP5W
— Conor Ryan (@ConorRyan_93) February 6, 2020
The Bruins went to the powerplay in the final minutes of the game but ended up dealing with some drama. The Blackhawks scored what appeared to be the game-winning goal, but the marker was waved off immediately. The call on the ice was a hand pass, which correctly negated the goal.
Torey Krug did not help matters, as the veteran defenseman was called for a trip at 18:55. That set the final 1:05 of regulation time at four-on-four, and gave the Hawks a four-on-three powerplay to start overtime.
Krug opened the extra frame with a breakaway chance but was stoned by Lehner. The Hawks tried a stretch pass the other way, but the choppy ice prevented a clean look for the home side. That’s when DeBrusk broke into the offensive zone and fed McAvoy for the game winner for the Bruins.
The Bruins return to action Saturday when they host the Arizona Coyotes at TD Garden.