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BHN Talking Points

Talking Points: Boston Bruins Bring Game 1 Party To The Fans

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BOSTON – Here are the Talking Points from the Boston Bruins 5-2 win over the New York Islanders in Game 1 of their second round series at TD Garden.

GOLD STAR: David Pastrnak waltzed into TD Garden wearing a flashy white and blue suit with a bullfighter’s hat, so everybody had to have an idea he was feeling pretty good about dropping a big performance on the Islanders. That’s exactly what Pastrnak did scoring a hat trick against the Isles and helping the Perfection Line dominate against the Islanders in a Game 1 where they couldn’t do anything to slow down the Black and Gold. Pastrnak capped it off with a great move into the offensive zone while using the driving Taylor Hall to occupy the defense, and that freed up No. 88 to fire a laser from the high slot that iced things in the third period for Boston. His first two goals were long rebounds from Isles goalie Ilya Sorokin that Pastrnak was able to collect, and then feed right back into the Isles goalie before the young netminder could recover. In all Pastrnak finished with the three goals, a plus-2 rating, seven shots on net, nine shot attempts and an offensively dominant performance energized by the crowd that gives him the extra juice he needs to perform.

BLACK EYE: Mat Barzal did not look into anything that was happening on the ice during this one. The playmaking center finished with one shot on net, two giveaways and lost 17-of-22 faceoffs while getting completely worked by the Bruins centers. Barzal compounded the other mistakes by taking a tripping call right after Pastrnak finished off his hat trick in the third period to make it 4-2, and in doing so eliminated the Islanders from even the desperation chance of pulling the goalie. Instead the Bruins were handed a power play and Taylor Hall scored an empty netter that completely slammed the door shut on New York. Barzal didn’t look engaged or tremendously interested in playing the Bruins in this Game 1, and he was part of an Islanders team that clearly didn’t have all cylinders firing on Saturday night.

TURNING POINT: After struggling early this season against the Islanders when it came to third periods, it was Boston’s turn to create a third period nightmare against thew Isles in Game 1 on Saturday night. After the two teams battled to a 2-2 tie through the first 40 minutes and Tuukka Rask had allowed a long distance goal to tie things up, it was the Bruins scoring three unanswered goals in the final 20 minutes to take complete control of the game. The game-winner was a huge turn of events as the Bruins successfully killed a penalty and then converted on a Charlie McAvoy long distance bomb at the other end of the ice for the go-ahead goal. Once the Black and Gold had recovered the lead, they aggressively built on it with two more scores before it was all said and done.

HONORABLE MENTION: The Bruins fans earned this one, all 17,400 of them. They were rocking the house during pregame warm-ups and brought the energy from beginning to end with a joy and appreciation that comes only when you rediscover something that had been taken away from you. They busted out a “We Want the Cup” chant midway through the game and absolutely flooded the ice with hats from all directions when David Pastrnak finished off the hat trick in the third period. It’s been a long 15 months for everybody dealing with COVID-19 protocols and a very different way of living, but Saturday night’s Bruins crowd at TD Garden sent a signal to the rest of our community that it’s okay to get back to normal. You could see it in the way they celebrated everything before, during and after the game and you could see it in the way the players fed off that energy and used it to dominate the Islanders club. Saturday night’s Game 1 win was something special for the Bruins and for the city of Boston.

BY THE NUMBERS: 17,400 – the number of Boston Bruins fans at TD Garden on Saturday night as the packed house brought an electric, celebratory vibe to the proceedings and made it feel like one giant hockey party as the Bruins played winning hockey.

QUOTE TO NOTE: “It’s a different sport with fans in the building. It warms your heart and it reminds you why you play the game.” –Boston Bruins winger David Pastrnak on the packed TD Garden that greeted a group of excited players for Game 1 against the Islanders.

Joe Haggerty has covered the Boston Bruins and the NHL for 18 years with NBC Sports Boston, WEEI.com, the Boston Metro and the Woburn Daily Times, and currently serves as lead Bruins reporter and columnist for Boston Hockey Now. Haggs always strives to capture the spirt of the thing any way that he can.

Copyright ©2020 National Hockey Now and Boston Hockey Now.

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