It had been over a month since Pavel Zacha had lit the lamp for the Boston Bruins, so it was a welcomed sight when it happened in a key spot for the Black and Golds.
During a wild scramble in front of the Ottawa net that included eight shots on a power play possession where they couldn’t get one past Senators goalie Cam Talbot, Zacha quickly launched a puck when it found his stick in the high slot area and he was able to get it past the surprised Ottawa goalie.
The goal snapped an 18-game goal-scoring drought for Zacha and earned the Boston Bruins a point in a 3-2 shootout loss to the Senators at the Canadian Tire Centre in their first game out of the Christmas break on Tuesday night.
PAVEL ZACHA TIE GAME pic.twitter.com/XNtapTyejL
— Marina Maher (@marinakmaher) December 28, 2022
It was a mostly quiet night for Zacha, who finished with three shot attempts, a blocked shot and a faceoff win in his 15 plus minutes of ice time, but he rose to the occasion at the key point in the hockey game.
The Bruins could have simply folded when they couldn’t put a puck past Talbot despite peppering him with pucks during a late third period power play possession, but they kept on the attack and Hampus Lindholm and Charlie Coyle kept the play alive until Zacha could snap one off at the net.
“It felt good to put it in, I think I had a lot of chances the last couple of games so it felt good to put it in,” said Zacha, who also collected his 200th career NHL point with the lamp lighter that tied things up with less than four minutes to go in the game.
It was Zacha’s first goal since a Nov. 13 win over the Vancouver Canucks, but the versatile forward is still on pace for a solid 10 goals and 51 points in his first season in Black and Gold.
All in all, it wasn’t an unexpected effort or result given that the Boston Bruins were coming out of a three-day Christmas break and seemed to improve as the game went along including firing 27 shots on the Senators net in the third period.
“Our goal was to get better every period. I thought our first was OK, our second wasn’t as good, give credit to Ottawa there, but I thought the third we really got to our game,” said Boston Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery.
Certainly, that was the case for Zacha as he was his best in the final period in the game sandwiched in between games against his old New Jersey Devils team at his old home rink at the Prudential Center.