Boston Bruins

By Ty Anderson, 985TheSportsHub.com

Night one of life without leading goalscorer David Pastrnak was a thumbs up for the Bruins on Tuesday night, as their offense overwhelmed Blackhawks goaltender Collin Delia for six goals on 37 shots en route to a 6-3 victory at TD Garden.

“We got results tonight, the buy-in,” Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy said after the victory. “I thought our fourth line was physical, played their game, controlled pucks low. Bergy’s line was Bergy’s line. They matched up today against Toews. We got them away from a different line the other night. Today, we stuck with that matchup. They had good energy. They were controlling the puck. I thought our D did a good job limiting the entries. Chicago’s dangerous at that. It did lead to a couple goals, but for the most part I thought we handled that part well. Scoring came with it.”

To say the scoring came with it, though, would be an understatement all things considered.

After what has to be one of the worst goals allowed all year, the game’s opening tally scored by Alex DeBrincat just 4:22 into the first period, the Bruins countered with three goals in a 4:12 span to close out the opening 20 in Boston. The first was off a power-play bullet from David Krejci, the second was off Danton Heinen’s stick for his ninth of the year, and the third was scored by Brad Marchand (and set up with a terrific pass off the warmed stick of Heinen).

Boston made sure to build off the two-goal edge, though, and connected for their fourth goal of the night when Jake DeBrusk scored his first goal in 13 games by way of a deflection just as Boston’s lengthy power-play opportunity expired.

“It’s something that’s long overdue and something that I needed, to be honest with you,” DeBrusk admitted after the win. “Obviously, didn’t do my normal celly, but it was just nice to get on the board to help the team, and obviously a big night for a couple guys, and just try to build from there and put your best foot forward.”

“He’s a streaky guy,” Cassidy, who hopes this goal can be that gets DeBrusk trending upwards again, remarked. “He’s still young, so I think it affects him mentally if you’re not on the scoresheet, so hopefully, it’s a sign of more, but we’ll see.”

The Blackhawks made it a one-goal game behind snipes from defensemen Duncan Keith and Erik Gustafsson, but the Bruins found insurance markers off the stick of Peter Cehlarik and again from Krejci, giving them a comfortable finish at TDG.

“Obviously we’ve been trying to play with the lead in the third period lately and extending the lead, just, whatever happens keep playing on your toes. Try to extend the lead, just like I said, and we did that and that shows a lot about our team,” Krejci said. “So we’re going in the right direction for sure.”

Noel Acciari finished tonight’s contest with 16:41 of time on ice, making this his fourth night of at least 16 minutes this season. Acciari, mind you, entered this season having logged 16 minutes just three times in his NHL career.

The victory was Cassidy’s 100th behind the Boston bench, making him the second-fastest coach to 100 wins in franchise history. Not bad for the Canadian-born kid that grew up rooting for the Bruins.

The Bruins will head out to California for the start of a five-game road trip beginning Friday night in Anaheim.

Ty Anderson is a writer and columnist for 985TheSportsHub.com. He has also been a voting member of the Boston Chapter of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association since 2013. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Yell at him on Twitter @_TyAnderson.