Bruins penalty kill leads way in season-opening win over Lightning
|10.03.13 at 9:49 pm ET|
Of all things, it was the Bruins’ penalty kill that led them past the Lightning in a 3-1 season-opening win Thursday at TD Garden.
The Bruins had a pair of shorthanded goals, one of which came in the first period on Chris Kelly’s first career penalty shot. Milan Lucic scored an even-strength goal in the second, with Patrice Bergeron picking up Boston’s second shorty of the night early in the third period.
The Lightning got their goal from Valtteri Filppula, who capitalized on a 2-on-1 in the second period after Torey Krug was caught pinching and Daniel Paille was burned at the blue line.
Tuukka Rask made 32 saves on the night, while Anders Lindback stopped 22 of Boston’s 25 shots on goal.
The Bruins will host the Red Wings Saturday.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS
– Jordan Caron played perhaps his best game at the NHL level was one of the best players on the ice. He was aggressive, took pucks to the net and had multiple scoring opportunities. He actually scored on one of them in the second period, but it was waved off (see below).
Caron was active from the beginning, as he blocked a Tampa clearing attempt in the first period and raced to the net before putting another shot on Lindback later in the shift. He also had a scoring chance in the final seconds of the period when Chris Kelly fed him in front.
– Good to see Lucic get on the board early, but don’t get carried away. Lucic scored in the season opener last season in what ended up being the first of just seven regular-season goals. Still, based on how he’s looked in camp and how offensively potent his line figures to be, this should be a big season for Lucic.
– Jarome Iginla did his best to win over the small percentage of fans who booed him during pre game introductions, as he challenged and fought Radko Gudas in the second period after Gudas took him down in the neutral zone. It was one of two fights on the night, as Shawn Thornton fought Pierre-Cedric Labrie in the first.
– Rask was high for the B’s at points, particularly on Tampa’s first 5-on-3 and in the third period. He was Boston’s best penalty killer on the 5-on-3 when he stopped a blast from Steven Stamkos at the top of the right circle and then robbed Teddy Purcell at the buzzer. In the third, Rask came across his net to rob what would have been Filppula’s second of the night off a bounce off the endboards.
WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS
– The Bruins gave the Lightning two 5-on-3s of more than 1:50. The first came when Gregory Campbell sent the puck over the glass in the defensive zone just six seconds into an Adam McQuaid cross-checking penalty in the first, with the other coming in the third on Shawn Thornton and Zdeno Chara penalties. The Lightning scored on neither of them, as Rask stoned them in the first period and a Ryan Malone penalty in the third made it a 4-on-3, which set up Bergeron’s goal.
Of course, the good news is that the Bruins killed off all the penalties and got two shorthanded goals on the night. Blessing in disguise?
– Caron was the victim of a brutal call on what should have been a goal in the second period. After he raced into the offensive zone and beat a Lightning player to the puck along the left wall, Caron drove to the net, put the puck on goal and persistently hacked at rebounds until it was in the net. The goal was waved off, however, as the official didn’t have a good angle on it and thought Lindback had covered the puck.