BOSTON – Here are the Talking Points from the Boston Bruins 3-2 loss to the Edmonton Oilers at TD Garden on Thursday night.
GOLD STAR: The Boston Bruins did a good job of holding down Connor McDavid in Thursday night’s game, but that opened the door for other Oilers players to step up and get the job done. In this instance it was Darnell Nurse ripping a point shot that managed to snake through traffic and rattle off the posts before ending up in the back of the net for the game-winning goal with less than five minutes to go in the game. Nurse finished with the goal and a plus-1 rating in 24:41 of ice time, eight shot attempts, three hits and two blocked shots in an impressive all-around performance on Edmonton’s back end. Certainly, Nurse and his play along the blue line have been an underrated part of the Oil’s step forward this year.
Darnell Nurse with a laser to give the Oilers the edge. 🎯 pic.twitter.com/7b9CGQwlj9
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) March 10, 2023
BLACK EYE: A rare tough night for Patrice Bergeron, who was a minus-2 and had the turnover that led to Edmonton’s first goal of the game. Bergeron also lost 13-of-23 draws in the face-off circle in the kind of performance that just looked like things were a little off for No. 37 throughout the entire game. Bergeron was also held off the scoresheet by the Oilers in an effective counter-performance against Boston’s top center. The one thing you can credit Bergeron and everybody else in a Boston Bruins uniform with is that they were able to hold Connor McDavid off the sheet for all the good that it did them.
TURNING POINT: After a strong second period and holding a 2-1 lead, it felt like the Boston Bruins were in the driver’s seat with their typically dominant third periods. But this time around it was Edmonton that stormed back and tied the game before pushing Boston until they broke late in the third period allowing the Nurse point goal. The Bruins actually outshot the Oilers by a 10-9 margin in that final 20 minutes, but it was the Oilers that enjoyed the higher quality chances leading to the win.
HONORABLE MENTION: David Pastrnak held up his end of the bargain in the matchup of the NHL’s two top goal-scorers when he notched his 45th goal of the season and helped set up Brad Marchand’s first period goal as well. Pastrnak finished with a goal and two points and a plus-1 rating in 21:04 of ice time, six shots on net, nine shot attempts overall and a pair of hits and a blocked shot in an active overall game. It wasn’t enough in the end as a number of Edmonton’s complimentary players stepped up to give them the one-goal win, but Pastrnak punched in and did his part in Thursday night’s marquee tilt.
BY THE NUMBERS: 20 – the number of goals for Brad Marchand again this season after scoring the game’s opening score, his 10th season in a row and his 12th career 20-goal season at the NHL level.
QUOTE TO NOTE: “I thought they outworked us, they outplayed us and outcoached us. I thought we were a non-competitive offensive team tonight.” –Boston Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery on Edmonton beating the B’s in a rare passive performance on home ice.