BOSTON – Here are the Talking Points from the Boston Bruins 3-1 win over the Dallas Stars at TD Garden to notch the opening night victory for the Black and Gold.
GOLD STAR: Brad Marchand is still the best player on the Boston Bruins, and he served notice of that with a pair of goals on opening. The first was a smart hockey play in the first period where he held up and avoided a potential offsides whistle before attacking the net and earning a penalty shot on a defensive play by Ryan Suter. Then he simply beat Braden Holtby with a slick move before giving a little shoulder shrug as he swung around and headed back to the bench. Then he iced the game late in the third period by burying an empty netter with Dallas defenseman Miro Heiskanen wrapped around his ankle as both players went tumbling into the boards. Marchand finished with the two goals and five shots on net along with a plus-2 in 20:04 of ice time.
Who had a Brad Marchand penalty to open the scoring for the Bruins this season? What a big money bet that would have been? 💰pic.twitter.com/ftfJ0rQ5V2
— Joe Haggerty (@HackswithHaggs) October 17, 2021
BLACK EYE: One shot on net and a team-worst minus-2 in 15:59 of ice time for Alexander Radulov. Thanks for playing, Alex. Or really not playing for most of the game when it comes to the enigmatic Russian winger. Tyler Seguin and Joe Pavelski weren’t much better for a Dallas team that really didn’t seem all that ready to play when they were outshot by a 17-5 margin in the first period, but at least they were a little bit noticeable. Not so much with Radulov.
TURNING POINT: For the Boston Bruins it was holding on and hanging on in the second period when Dallas really made their push. They scored the tying goal on a Luke Glendening snipe from the high slot that beat Swayman after a defensive breakdown, but that was the only shot that beat the rookie Bruins goaltender all night. Otherwise, the Bruins packed it in for just eight other shots on net in the period and lived to fight in the third period where they scored a pair of goals and pulled away from a Stars team that clearly wasn’t ready for them.
HONORABLE MENTION: Jake DeBrusk was excellent during the preseason and again saw results on opening night when he scored a goal and had a couple of great scoring chances by simply taking the puck to the net. DeBrusk finished with two shots on net, four shot attempts and a pair of hits in his 13 minutes of ice time and popped in a loose puck around the net for the game-winner in the third period. DeBrusk also had a chance and nearly scored on a one-handed flick while driving to the post, but Braden Holtby was able to sway that one away. Either way, it looks like DeBrusk is determined to consistently take the puck to the net this season and that could bode very well for his offensive game as he looks to return to his 27-goal form of a couple of years ago.
BY THE NUMBERS: 26 – the number of saves for Jeremy Swayman in a calm, solid performance between the pipes in allowing just one goal for the opening night victory. It could be the first of many this season for the rookie netminder.
QUOTE TO NOTE: “It’s gonna be a really fun year.” –Boston Bruins rookie goaltender Jeremy Swayman after notching the win on opening night against the Stars.