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Talking Points: Marchand Leads The Way Again, Bruins Beat Canucks 3-2



Boston Bruins

BOSTON – Here are the Talking Points from a 3-2 win for the Boston Bruins over the Vancouver Canucks on Sunday night at TD Garden.

The Bruins erased a 2-1 third period deficit with two powerplay goals from Brad Marchand – who tied the game at 8:45 of the final frame – and David Pastrnak, who scored the game-winner with his seventh goal of the season at 16:36. Anton Blidh scored the other Bruins goal tying the game at one 5:51 into the game and Patrice Bergeron assisted on Marchand’s and Pastrnak’s third period tallies. Boston Bruins goalie Linus Ullmark was shaky in the first half of the game but made some huge saves in the third period and finished the game with 36 stops.

Scituate, MA native Conor Garland was the best player for the Canucks with a goal and six shots, and Tanner Pearson also lit the lamp for the visitors. Former Boston Bruins goalie Jaroslav Halak turned away 39 shots in the loss.

GOLD STAR: Brad Marchand – Marchand had one of those games that once again showed why he should be considered an early Hart Trophy candidate. After being one of the few Bruins to show up in a 5-2 loss to the New York Rangers on Friday, Marchand once again put the team on his shoulders but thankfully on Sunday, his teammates followed his lead. The Boston Bruins alternate captain was like a bat out of hell throughout the game, hitting any Canucks within striking distance and swarming around the net like a bee who just found a honey utopia. Marchand finished the game with a goal and assist, five shots, and five hits in 20:10 TOI. He almost had another assist on a late empty-netter from Bergeron but the goal was called back due to a missed offsides. The veteran winger now has a three-game point streak going with a goal and three assists during that span. Marchand now leads the team in goals (9), assists (15), and points with 24.




BLACK EYE: Oliver Ekman-Larsson – As far as this puck scribe is concerned, it was a blessing in disguise when the Boston Bruins didn’t acquire Ekman-Larsson this past offseason. The former Arizona Coyotes captain made it clear to Coyotes general manager Bill Armstrong that he would only waive his no-movement clause for the Bruins or Canucks and in the end, the Canucks pulled the trigger on a trade that netted them the Swedish rearguard and Garland. On Sunday, Ekman-Larsson failed to register a point and had just two shots. He also injured himself on a dirty hit on Blidh that saw both players leave the game. Ekman-Larsson returned but Blidh did not. At an $8.2 million cap hit for this season and the next five, Ekman-Larsson just wasn’t worth what it likely would’ve cost the Bruins in a trade.


TURNING POINT: Ullmark Stones Motte – Boston Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy referenced this save in his post-game presser (see below), and it certainly seemed to pick the Bruins up and made them realize they had a chance to erase that 2-1 deficit in the third period. Ullmark stopped Canucks forward Tyler Motte and a shorthanded breakaway 8:01 into the final frame and just 44 ticks later, Marchand tied the game.


HONORABLE MENTION: Linus Ullmark – The Boston Bruins goalie was on his way to being the Black Eye here but he battled through a rough start to the game and came up with some huge saves late. Ullmark still seems to be fighting the puck too much when there’s traffic in front but also seems to be a resilient goalie that can never be counted out. He can make big saves at crucial times and it’s clear his teammates fed off that on Sunday.

BY THE NUMBERS: 13 – The number of NHL Execs and pro scouts that were on hand at TD Garden Sunday night. As we reported this past Friday, NHL trade chatter has picked up again and there could be some moves made soon. Amongst those scouting the game was Seattle Kraken GM Ron Francis, Minnesota Wild Senior Advisor To The GM Ray Shero, Florida Panthers Senior Advisor to the GM Paul Fenton, Toronto Maple Leafs Director of Pro Scouting Eric Joyce, Blackhawks head of scouting Alex Brooks, and former Boston Bruins GM and current St. Louis Blues VP of Hockey Ops Peter Chiarelli.

QUOTE TO NOTE: “If he doesn’t make that save, I don’t think we won the game.” – Boston Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy on Ullmark’s huge stop on Motte.



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