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Talking Points: ‘Czeching Line’ Comes Up Big For Boston Bruins

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WASHINGTON DC – Here are the Talking Points from the Boston Bruins 5-2 win over the Washington Capitals on Wednesday night in their regular season opener at Capital One Arena.

GOLD STAR: David Pastrnak was like a human highlight reel in this one parlaying great energy, emotion and skill into a four-point performance that included a goal and three assists, with his best pass of the night not even resulting in a goal. Either way, the goal was a highlight reel one and he teamed with Pavel Zacha and David Krejci for some phenomenal offensive production on a night where Brad Marchand and Charlie McAvoy weren’t really missed at all. Pastrnak and Krejci finally iced it in the third period when a rebound of Pastrank’s net drive resulted in Krejci’s first NHL goal in a couple of years. In all Pastrnak finished with six shots on net, nine shot attempts, a plus-2 rating and four points in 19:03 of ice time that served as a statement that No. 88 is primed for a massive season.

BLACK EYE: The Boston Bruins might have already suffered their first injury of the 2022-23 NHL season as Jake DeBrusk couldn’t play in the third period after his left shoulder slammed down hard to the ice in the second period. DeBrusk was doubled over and in major pain as he skated back to the bench in the second period but finished out the middle segment before staying behind for treatment in the third period. DeBrusk finished with 11:06 of ice time and Jim Montgomery had to piece things together on the top line for the remainder of the game once DeBrusk was out.

TURNING POINT: Clinging to a 3-2 lead in the third period, Lars Eller managed to break in all alone on a Boston Bruins power play for a shorthanded breakaway bid that could have taken all the air out of the Boston Bruins. Instead, Linus Ullmark stepped up and made his biggest save of the game to preserve the one-goal lead and open things up for the Black and Gold to extend the lead later on in the period. Ullmark finished with 33 saves in a big performance between the pipes that Jim Montgomery called “awesome” after it was all over. The save was a massive one midway through the third period.

HONORABLE MENTION: There will be nights when honors will go to a big scorer, or when the goaltender will sweep up these kind of postgame honors. Then there will be nights when a tough-as-nails defenseman gets credit for his work in the trenches as Derek Forbort absolutely should after finishing with six blocked shots and five hits in 23:19 of massive ice time as the single biggest D-man to step up in Charlie McAvoy’s absence. Forbort was huge on the penalty kill and just massive all-around playing a shutdown role and paying a giant physical price to allow the B’s to come out of the game with a road win. Credit where it’s due for a guy that picked up where he left off at the end of last season for the Bruins.

BY THE NUMBERS: 2 – the number of penalties that 22-year-old rookie Jakub Lauko drew in the third period to help keep the momentum’s Boston way in what was a tight one-goal game at that point.

QUOTE TO NOTE: “It’s an honor. Bergie gave it to me. Pretty sweet. It’s going on the mantle, probably in my son’s room.” –Jim Montgomery, on being awarded the game puck by Boston Bruins captain Patrice Bergeron after securing his first win as the new B’s bench boss.

 

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.

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Fred DeCicco

The “Czech-mates” looked pretty good

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