Editor’s Note: This may say “By: Justin” but it was actually written by Chris Bentivegna. Benti is one of the people we believe would be an excellent fourth writer for us, so we decided that he should get a shot doing a recap. Please leave as much feedback as possible. Any editing/formatting issues is Justin’s fault.
In past Bruins seasons, a Sunday afternoon game on National television against a desperate hockey team that needs every single win it can get would be a large cause for concern for myself. Typically, the Bruins really suck in day-time games. Then combine that with the fact that it is the second night (day?) of a road back to back, and that would be a recipe for a large afternoon shit sandwich that causes me to be drunk by 4pm on a Sunday.
So this entire game was set up for the Bruins to fall down 3-0 early and eventually lose 4-2. The Flyers had 85 points with 9 to play, not exactly clinging to the final few playoff spots in the East, but in enough of a spot where they couldn’t really afford to take losses. Not compared to the Bruins who all they have left to do is clinch home-ice advantage and could argue that they would be better off resting players down the stretch than playing all-out.
The beginning of the game played out like my greatest fears for a matinee Bruins game. The Flyers controlled the puck in the Bruins zone for the first half of the first period. Then, the Bruins recovered, owned the game for the next forty minutes and were one terrible turnover and one unlucky bounce away from winning the game in regulation before eventually winning the game in the shootout.
Overall, not much to complain about in this game. Let’s take a closer look:
- After the first goal that I described as a “softie rocket” beat Tuukka Rask low glove side, Tuukka Rask did Tuukka Rask things in the net for the Boston Bruins. He faced 52 shots of varying difficulties with 33 of those coming in the final two periods of the game. Philadelphia came after him, and he did things like this:
Jesus, that hurts my groin just watching that.
Then in the shootout, after getting justifiably undressed by Claude Giroux, he recovered to make stops like this:
Are human beings even able to do that or am I just fat? Mr. Rask, how did you feel about this game?
— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) March 30, 2014
HAPPY WIN #100!
(Wait, that was only win number 100? Feels like more than that… oh well)
- Patrice Bergeron for Hart might be the silliest thing I have seen on the internets today, but it doesn’t hide the fact that Patrice Bergeron might be putting in his finest season as a pro. Today’s goal made it seven straight games with a goal for Mr. Perfect. Even better, his move in the shootout was so good that any female watching this game is now going to give birth to the love child of Patrice Bergeron nine months from now.
Hold on, let me stare at my desktop wall-paper some more.
- Puck movement was solid all game long. Sometimes I get mad at certain players who pass instead of shoot on a consistent basis CoughDavidKrejciCough, but those players have their heart in the right place. Both the Mesarzos goal and the Chara goal were set up by Bruins players choosing to make the extra pass and both defenders burying the puck past Steve Mason.
- The 5 on 3 penalty kill in the third period. Ultimately it didn’t matter because of that aforementioned stupid bouncing puck stupid terrible back-checking game-tying goal, but that 5 on 3 kill was somehow suffocating, or maybe the Flyers suck. I’m not sure.
- I hope that was Jarome Iginla’s last fight of the season. Not only did he commit the biggest sin in hockey which is getting all pissy about a big but clean hit and wanting to start a fight over it, not only did he pretty clearly lose the fight, but he traded himself for fucking shitty Zac Rinaldo for five minutes. Stupid, stupid, stupid. He can’t do that in the playoffs, and if any shitty pesty player is seeing that now, they might see a chance to get under the Bruins skin.
- Bruins gave up a lot of poor turnovers which led to a lot of chances the other way. Give Philadelphia credit as they certainly had more energy than the Bruins from that whole “we definitely need wins more than the Bruins need wins right now” theory, but it doesn’t make up for some of the sloppy plays. I might have said “that’s not good” more times this season than any other game. Usually that corresponds with turnovers.
- Glory Days grill still hasn’t burned that booth that I sat in during this game. I enjoy your food and your beer, but I won’t be able to come give you guy’s money during the playoffs unless you do something about that booth.
- People bitching about shootouts. I might be the only one, but I don’t know how else fans would want the game to end. If the game ends in a tie, people will bitch and if the game ends in a shootout, people will bitch. It’s damned if you do, damned if you don’t. The only way to fix it would be to move to a 3 point system, but the NHL doesn’t want to do that for historical purposes BECAUSE SPORTS HAVE NEVER CHANGED EVER.
- The last play of regulation. First nobody could hit the bouncing puck highlighted by poor Johnny Boychuk hacking at the puck like my golf-swing. Then Zdeno Chara chases the puck because Boychuk is out of position with Tuukka Rask coming out to play the puck to prevent the goal against the post. That would be all fine and dandy if someone came back to take Chara’s position on the back-side of the post. Nobody did and suddenly the game was tied. Thank god this isn’t April or I would need a new coffee table.
- Shitty Philadelphia crowd is shitty. Hey guys, you’re in a game fighting for your playoff lives. Stop acting like it’s a Sunday afternoon hangover and have some excitement. Or don’t. It’s really up to you.
- Does this DOY Fourth Writer game have a name? Can it be like The Voice? Does that make Pez Blake Shelton? I think that makes Robb Cee Lo Green.
- Can the Bruins match the Red Wings 124 point season? No stop it.
- Are the Bruins (gasp!) PEAKING TOO SOON? No shut up.
- Can the Bruins win the cup if they are burdened by the President’s Trophy? It really stopped the Blackhawks last year, didn’t it?
- The Bruins next five games are against teams that need wins to cement their playoff status. If the Bruins come out of them with a winning record, does that say more about the Bruins or those other teams status as a playoff teams?