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Talking Points: Boston Bruins ‘Big Boys’ Bust Out Vs. Capitals



Boston Bruins

BOSTON – Here are the Talking Points from the Boston Bruins 6-3 win over the Washington Capitals at TD Garden on Sunday afternoon.

GOLD STAR: Other Boston Bruins players like Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand might have had more dominant performances, but David Krejci is the Bruins star that’s been shining since the trade deadline. Krejci was at it again on Sunday with a pair of goals when the game was very much in question as he scored the second goal of the first period to stake the Bruins to a 2-0 lead. It was a tap-in on a Connor Clifton pass after he smartly cut to the back post, and the second goal turned out to be the game-winner in the second period. The Capitals had taken a 3-2 lead in the second period but worked to tie it back up before Krejci immediately after the B’s failed to score on a power play possession. Krejci took a pass from Craig Smith, patiently waited for Dmitry Orlov to dive past him trying to block the shot and then fired one perfectly under the bar for the go-ahead score. Krejci finished with an efficient two goals on two shots on net and won 8-of-12 face-off wins in his 14:05 of ice time.

BLACK EYE: Two shots on net and a minus-5 rating in 25:50 of ice time for John Carlson, who hasn’t too many games this horrendous in his NHL career. The Bruins continuously had wide open players at the front of the net in what felt like a “defense optional” game for the Capitals. The worst was Carlson was probably the first scoring play of the game when Brad Marchand stripped Carlson behind the Washington net on a shorthanded forecheck. The puck popped away from the battle and straight to Patrice Bergeron in front of the net for the bang-bang backhander as the game’s first score. Things didn’t get any better for Carlson after that with the gaping holes in the defensive zone coverage that Boston’s best players had a field day with. Alex Ovechkin wasn’t much better with a minus-4 afternoon that was pretty light on the backchecking as well. Don’t even get us started on Tom Wilson, either.

TURNING POINT: The Bruins fell behind 3-2 in the second period and a month ago that might have been a time when the B’s folded under the weight of summoning extra offense that wasn’t there. But these days the Bruins know they can play in a high-scoring offensive game after bringing in the new blood at the NHL trade deadline, and they showed it by finishing with a six-goal afternoon that was nearly all damage done during even-strength play. At this point the Bruins are strong defensively, have got elite-level goaltending and are piecing together offense that can come from every forward line while still standing out on special teams. The Bruins are looking like a dangerous team and the second period was a good example of that.

HONORABLE MENTION: Patrice Bergeron had himself a day that started with his shorthanded scoring connection with Brad Marchand. He finished with two goals, three points and a plus-4 rating as the Perfection Line got whatever they wanted against a Washington team that wasn’t exactly looking to roll up their sleeves on Sunday afternoon. Bergeron also finished with a game-high five shots on net, nine shot attempts, a hit, two takeaways, a blocked shot and 11-of-19 face-off wins while dominating against the Capitals from beginning to end. Certainly, he was the beneficiary of some great plays from his linemates, but Bergeron was in a class by himself on Sunday afternoon.

BY THE NUMBERS: 700 – the number of career NHL points for Brad Marchand after a four-point game (two goals, two assists) against the Capitals. Only Phil Esposito, Bobby Orr, Rick Middleton and Ray Bourque got to 700 points for the Boston Bruins faster than No. 63. That’s pretty elite company.

QUOTE TO NOTE: “The big boys [on the top two lines] came to play today and we’re a dangerous team when that happens” –Boston Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy on his top two lines providing all six goals in the win over the Washington Capitals.

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