Here’s the Talking Points from the Boston Bruins 2-1 shootout loss to the New York Islanders at Nassau Coliseum on Tuesday night.
GOLD STAR: The real winner was the fans that got to watch a 3-on-3 hockey overtime between the Boston Bruins and New York Islanders that had both teams at their best. The Boston Bruins had chances with David Pastrnak getting multiple looks, Patrice Bergeron stuffed on a net drive attempt and Brad Marchand snapping one off the crossbar after he’d stripped an Islanders defenseman right at the blue line. It wasn’t just the Bruins with the breathtaking chances in overtime either as Jaroslav Halak was forced to make two saves in the five-minute overtime session with both teams going back and forth during the extra five-minute period. Sometimes things can get bottled up by NHL coaches during the 3-on-3 overtime and the excitement can get sucked out of the extra session, but this was not of those particular times during a thrilling five minutes. It just didn’t have a happy ending for the Boston Bruins.
BLACK EYE: It’s not all Charlie Coyle’s fault, but he finished Tuesday night’s game with zero shots on net in 16:38 of ice time in a game where the Bruins clearly needed more from their big guys. Instead, the Bruins were left to wonder why players like Coyle, Anders Bjork, Jack Studnicka, David Krejci and a host of fourth line players simply aren’t up to the offensive task. The Perfection Line has roughly half the number of goals scored this season, and down the line players like Krejci (zero goals), Torey Krug (gone to St. Louis), Jack Studnicka and Craig Smith are either gone or still have plenty of work to be done. There are too many guys that the Bruins rely on for offense that just aren’t providing anything for the Black and Gold right now and need to step up and alleviate some of the pressure that’s ailing them right now. If they wanted to win this one, one of those lines or players needed to step up and be the hero.
TURNING POINT: The moment arrived in the second period on a Bruins power play when they could have extended the lead to 2-0 over the Isles, but the Islanders were able to keep it a one goal game with a spectacular stop from Semyon Varlamov. Krejci was wide open with the entire net to shoot at and Varlamov seemingly out of the play, and the Bruins center flipped a backhanded shot that appeared to be destined for a goal. But instead Varlamov was able to knock the puck away from danger using the shift of his stick, a breathtaking save that was as much lucky as it was good stuff from the Russian netminder. So instead Krejci was left looking to the sky for answers and continues on without a goal this entire hockey season, and the Bruins weren’t able to extend a lead that might have been good enough for two points if they’d managed to scrape for the Krejci goal in the second period.
HONORABLE MENTION: Brad Marchand showed up looking to win the game and very nearly did it in the overtime session. Marchand stole a puck at the offensive blue line and moved in all alone for the shot during 3-on-3 overtime but snapped a shot off the crossbar after beating Semyon Varlamov clean with a rifled shot. He did take a penalty in the second period after jumping Oliver Wahlstrom following his boarding hit on Connor Clifton, and that led to the Islanders scoring their only goal during regulation on the ensuing power play. But the Marchand roughing call was the kind of team-support penalty that the Bruins will accept in defending teammates, and beyond that Marchand had an assist on David Pastrnak’s goal, five shots on net and 10 shot attempts overall while bringing the energy and a little attitude in a big game vs. the Isles. He just can’t carry things all by himself.
BY THE NUMBERS: 400 – the number of career points for David Pastrnak after scoring the Bruins lone goal, a power play strike in the first period, in the 2-1 shootout loss to the Islanders.
QUOTE TO NOTE: “I liked our team’s effort from start to finish. I thought we were the better team. Didn’t generate a lot, didn’t give up a lot. We just couldn’t finish one more play…didn’t have much luck around the net.” –Bruce Cassidy, who didn’t really sound displeased with his team’s effort after a 2-1 shootout loss to the Isles where they picked up a point.
Here’s the added bonus for the best video created during 65-minute plus game on Tuesday night on Long Island.
Its good TV etiquette pausing for the Zamboni pic.twitter.com/exs9SWuZCJ
— Joe Haggerty (@HackswithHaggs) March 10, 2021