Postgame Video courtesy of Tim Rosenthal
BOSTON– Three out of five ain’t bad. And six goals in a span of 38 seconds sounds even better.
Tack that along with seven goals in one game and you have a thriving and confident Bruins team.
Though the Bruins took a tough loss against the Penguins on Saturday, there wasn’t much concern in the locker room with how they played, and in fact, the team was confident that they could rebound quickly for this game against the Hurricanes.
And who was going to dispute it? After all, in the past five games Boston has outscored its opponents 26-10 while earning a 4-1-0 record in that time. Also within the week, the Bruins have had three games where they have scored two goals within 13 seconds of each other or less in a single game — twice against the Penguins, and once tonight against the Hurricanes.
In Monday afternoon’s 7-0 Bruins shellacking of Carolina, the Bruins put up their goals in a way most fans weren’t expecting. The first goal came just 7:56 into the first period from defenseman Mark Stuart, who had been out for over a month due to a broken wrist. Still donning a brace, Stuart found himself becoming more comfortable after putting his team up 1-0.
“It felt good,” Stuart said. “I mean, a little nervous beforehand because you don’t know what to expect. I think I was fortunate enough to get that goal early and it kind of helped me relax.”
Also from the defensive side of the game, captain Zdeno Chara thrilled the sold out crowd at TD Garden by unleashing three goals of his own — the third coming with just under six minutes to go in the game. It was Chara’s first hat trick of his career, and he joins only three other Bruin defensemen who have a recorded three-goal game.
“It’s well deserved,” Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas said. “Earlier this year he struggled scoring. And he’s getting it back. Those were three good goals. I’m liking where his shot’s at and the positions he’s getting himself in to take those shots the past few games, and it’s paying off. So I’m very happy for him. He got two early, and I was hoping he’d get that third. Of course nobody wanted to say anything. It’s kinda like shut out; you don’t say it, but I was very happy when he actually…he finished that hat trick off.”
While the defense accounted for four of the Bruins goals, the other three came from your usual suspects– Gregory Campbell, Michael Ryder and Patrice Bergeron.
Bergeron was named the NHL’s Second Star of the Week, and before tonight’s game, he tallied four goals and three assists. Tacking on another goal and assist tonight just solidified Bergeron’s spot in that group. He has become the second player from the Bruins this year to earn such honors. Tim Thomas was the other.
If there was one thing the Bruins needed from their offense, it was a consistent game plan and execution, and according to Bergeron, that’s exactly what they have been getting as of late.
“Yeah I think that’s something that we’ve talked about for a long time this year and we’re starting to see it,” Bergeron said. “But obviously you want to stay consistent so you got to keep going you can’t just stop here. You gotta take it a game at a time. It’s been good, our intensity, the way we played for 60 minutes and back to back games. And in the Pittsburgh game, even though we didn’t win, I thought we were in it the whole time.”
The Bruins will have to keep the same strategy going into tomorrow night’s matchup, against the Hurricanes back in North Carolina. The Hurricanes will be hungry for revenge, and the Bruins will need to match that intensity going on the road.
“Things can carry over from games, so obviously they’re not going to be happy with how things went,” Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid said. “They’re going to come out hard tomorrow, so we got to make sure we come out with the same effort that we did tonight.”