It’s incumbent on hockey clubs to develop an identity quickly in a compacted 56-game schedule like this season for the Boston Bruins.
It’s a great thing for them that the B’s are doing just that extremely early in a season where character, leadership and good, old-fashioned guts are going to count for a lot. The Black and Gold fashioned another third period comeback – a third consecutive third period really in as many games — in their 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center that pushed them to the top of the East Division.
This time it was two goals in the span of 27 seconds with Brad Marchand jamming for a gritty goal at the front of the net on a loose puck rebound, and then Sean Kuraly snapping off a long distance shot off a left wing rush that beat Brian Elliott for the game-winner.
The Bruins are wary that they can’t keep coming back from the dead against opponents while constantly playing from behind, but Bruce Cassidy countered that it’s not always the way these games have played out. On Friday night the Bruins and Flyers played to a bruising, heavy scoreless tie after 40 minutes of play, and the comeback only got started after a Flyers power play goal finally broke the scoreless stalemate to start the final period.
“I think every situation at different. Today was more about sticking with it. Clearly, we didn’t have our legs at the beginning [of the game] at the tail end of a road trip,” said Bruce Cassidy. “We found a way to keep ourselves in the game, killed some penalties and it was more about that it takes 20 guys [to win]. When you have a chance, bear down. Sure enough it was a greasy goal around the net and then Sean [Kuraly] comes through for us. That’s the stuff you need to win. It’s got to be different guys.”
That will absolutely be the case in the postseason for a Bruins team that more and more looks like it’s going to be there based largely on their dominant showings in the final 20 minutes.