The Boston Bruins (10-1-2, 22 pts) extended their win streak to five games and their point streak (9-0-1, 21 pts) to ten games with a hard-fought 1-0 win over the New York Rangers Friday in New York.
Boston Bruins goalie Jaro Halak made 21 saves for the shutout and Nick Ritchie notched his fifth lamplighter of the season.
Here’s your Boston Hockey Now Five Thoughts on a game that definitely had that old-time hockey feel between two Original 6 teams that still have six games against each other to settle their differences this season.
GOLD STAR: Boston Bruins Penalty Kill. What more can one say about the Bruins’ PK? They came into the night ranked second overall and just continue to dominate opposing powerplays. On Friday, the Bruins killed off all six Rangers’ powerplays with the most important kill coming in the final 1:02 of regulation after defenseman Charlie McAvoy was called for delay of game. In a game where tensions were running high and there was a parade of players to the sin-bin, the PK delivered in a big way!
BLACK EYE: Jacob Trouba. Paging NHL Department Of Player Safety! There have been too many headshots that haven’t resulted in suspensions this season and if the NHL doesn’t suspend the Rangers defenseman for this clear targeting of Bruins defenseman Jakub Zboril’s head then they can stop with their hypocrisy that they’re trying to rid the game of headshots. The principal point of contact was the head. Period. End of story!
— Hockey Hound (@HockeyHoundShow) February 13, 2021
TURNING POINT: Charlie McAvoy coming to the defense of teammate Jakub Zboril. As mentioned above, Trouba laid a textbook headshot on Zboril as the Boston Bruins defenseman was playing the puck. As I pointed out on Twitter during the game, the next time Brad Marchand or David Krejci miss a game, McAvoy needs to get the ‘A’ for alternate captain because the Bruins’ new No. 1 d-man is also emerging as a true leader on the Bruins blue line. From that point on, the Bruins were engaged and weren’t going to let the Rangers get away with any shenanigans. They clearly fed off that and by the end of the middle frame, they were up 1-0 on a Nick Ritchie goal.
HONORABLE MENTION: Jaro Halak. Let’s be honest, Halak could’ve easily gotten the Gold Star here but the PK as a whole was huge, especially as mentioned on that final and late Rangers powerplay.
The Boston Bruins ‘1 B’ goalie got his first shutout of the season Friday with a 21-save performance at ‘the most popular arena on earth’ Madison Square Garden. Halak was huge in a lackluster first period for the Bruins that saw them get outshot 10-6. Halak has now allowed two or fewer goals in four of his five starts and has not lost in regulation this season going 4-0-1 in his first five starts.
BY THE NUMBERS: Per Scott Charles of Pro Hockey Talk who after the game when asking Halak a question, pointed out, Halak is now 23-8-1 in his career against the Rangers with four shutouts. Knowing Bruins Head Coach Bruce Cassidy, you can bet Halak at least splits every two-game set left against the Blueshirts this season.
QUOTE TO NOTE: “We have fun!” – Bruins rookie defenseman Jeremy Lauzon on the Bruins 10-1-2 start to the 2021 season.