The Boston Bruins ended the month of November on a high note, and are starting December off to a good note. After Sunday night’s 3-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens, Boston is looking to continue their good fortune in a busy December month.
With the first period underway at the TD Garden, the Bruins found themselves trailing 1-0 after Montreal’s Joel Armia scored off a backhand that seemingly looked to be a deflection off a Bruins player. After a quiet second period, Boston’s goalie Tuukka Rask kept the game within reach as the score was 1-0 by the end of the second period. The Canadiens team looked better than the previous bout against the Bruins when they lost 8-1.
Coming into the third period, the Bruins David Pastrnak continued to slap rockets into the net. Notching his 25th goal of the season, the 23-year-old Czech native is now the eight-player to reach that mark in 27 or fewer games. He is also the first Bruins player since Phil Esposito to reach the 25-goal mark so quickly in the league.
BACK IN THE SADDLE
Another big story was the return of David Backes, who had been out since November 2nd. The 35-year-old has a long withstanding history of concussions, and there was concern about his return to the game itself. After consulting a neurologist, he was cleared to lace-up his skates. And as such, Sunday night Backes was back. And judging by his reaction to scoring a power-play goal, it was a moment to remember:
“That was elation. You don’t understand how small the window Krejci had to put that puck in. There’s a guy above me and below me that I have to try to get off and he puts it right where he needs to and Jake got it front.”
The Bruins have now extended their winning streak to seven games as the Montreal Canadiens continue their frustrating losing streak to eight games. Boston is now 19-3-5 and leads the league, while Montreal falls to 11-10-6.
On Friday, the Bruins faced the New York Rangers for a post-Thanksgiving matinee game at the TD Garden. New York struck first as Pavel Buchnevich and Filip Chytil scored first to give the Rangers a 2-0 lead in the second. Boston found their legs and Sean Kuraly would break through, getting the Bruins on board. David Pastrnak would tie the game up in the first few minutes of the third period. The B’s managed to kill off a double-minor penalty against Par Lindholm (high stick).
With the teams heading into overtime, fellow Czech line-mate David Krejci would score the game-winning tally off a wrist shot, completing Boston’s comeback win 3-2.
The Bruins headed up north to face the Ottawa Senators at the Canadian Tire Centre at the tail end of a back-to-back. After two lackluster periods that saw both teams scoreless, it would be Ottawa with the first strike. Seconds into the third, Thomas Chabot would snap one past Tuukka Rask, making the score 1-0. Minutes later, Brad Marchand would net one on the five-hole to tie up the game. The game-winning goal would come courtesy of Captain Zdeno Chara, who rocketed one past Senator’s goalie Anders Nilsson, with the final score of 2-1.
BLOWOUT IN MONTREAL
In their first of a back to back, Boston would face the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre Tuesday night. After winning the first of the series, Montreal was hoping for a repeat. Unfortunately for the Canadiens, the night would belong to the Black and Gold. David Pastrnak recorded his sixth NHL career hat trick in the 8-1 throttle against the Habs. Jaroslav Halak made 36 saves in net, and both Brad Marchand and Charlie Coyle tallied a goal and two assists for Boston. The team had 12 players that notched at least one point during the game. Shea Weber was the lone Canadien to score. Montreal’s goalie Carey Price was pulled in the second after the score was 5-1.
Boston will face the Caroline Hurricanes (16-10-1) this coming Tuesday at the TD Garden. The Canes are coming off a 3-2 win over the Tampa Bay Lighting. The Canes were up 3-0 but held on to win despite a potential comeback by the Lightning. It will be the first meeting this season between Boston and Carolina since last year’s Stanley Cup Playoffs. Boston would sweep the Hurricanes to meet with the St. Louis Blues for the Cup final. Canes’ Dougie Hamilton has five points in his last five games. David Krejci has seven points in his last five games. Andrei Svechnikov leads the team with 29 points, while Sebastian Aho leads with 13 goals. Teuvo Teravainen leads with 19 assists.
WHEN AND WHERE TO WATCH: Tuesday, November 3rd with puck drop at 7:00 pm. ESPN+, NESN, FS-CR
The Bruins continue their four-game homestead when they face the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday night. Chicago is 10-11-5 in their last 10 games, and are coming off a back-to-back loss against the Colorado Avalanche (home/away). The Hawks are down key players; goaltender Robin Lehner is out due to having flu-like symptoms, Andrew Shaw (undisclosed injury), Dylan Strome (concussion) and Duncan Keith (groin). Chicago will be looking to get in the win against St. Louis Monday night after suffering a few losses last week. Patrick Kane leads the team with 33 points, 14 goals, and 19 assists.
WHEN AND WHERE TO WATCH: Thursday, November 5th with puck drop at 7:00 pm. NESN, ESPN+. NBCSCH
On Saturday, the B’s face the Colorado Avalanche for the second time this season. Back on October 10th, the Bruins lost 4-2 to the Avs. Colorado is coming off a three-game winning streak and will be playing a back-to-back prior to the game against Boston. Top center forward Nathan MacKinnon leads the team with 42 points, 17 goals, and 25 assists. MacKinnon was also named NHL’s First Star for the week that ended December 1st. He is tied with David Pastrnak for fourth in the league in points.
WHEN AND WHERE TO WATCH: Saturday, November 7th with puck drop at 7:00 pm. NESN, ALT
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Featured image courtesy of (AP Photo/Winslow Townson) Winslow Townson