From the NHL Newswire at 985TheSportsHub.com
Charlie McAvoy scored the game-winning goal with just 1:13 left in regulation, as the Boston Bruins conquered the Los Angeles Kings with impeccable late-third-period execution in a 4-2 road win on Saturday at the Staples Center. Boston leapfrogged the Toronto Maple Leafs for second place in the Atlantic Division with the victory.
Jake DeBrusk opened the scoring for the Bruins to make it 1-0 just 5:31 into the game. David Krejci and Peter Cehlarik got the play rolling by forcing a Kings turnover in the neutral zone. Cehlarik took it the other way then pinged a centering pass off the skate of Kings defenseman Paul LaDue right to DeBrusk, who slapped it by Kings goalie Jack Campbell.
The Kings started to generate more high-quality scoring chances in the second period. Tuukka Rask kept them at bay for a time with a highlight-reel save, stopping top center Anze Kopitar on a shorthanded bid with a leg save. It looked like Kopitar had Rask beat but couldn’t finish the sterling chance.
Rask later made a spectacular save on the Kings’ Alex Iafallo when he stacked the pads to rob what could’ve been an easy goal. The goalie stopped 23 of 25 shots in all.
TUUKKA RASK STACKS THE PADS WHAT A SAVE!!! pic.twitter.com/h4smZCyls8— Marina Molnar (@mkmolnar) February 17, 2019
Veteran winger Iyla Kovalchuk, however, solved Rask in an otherwise dominant period. Later in the second on a power play, Kovalchuk shifted back in the left faceoff circle to find open space and a shooting lane. That’s when he ripped a screaming wrist shot past Rask to tie the game 1-1.
The Kings got back the Bruins’ shorthanded save when Chris Wagner forced a turnover to get a breakaway on Campbell, but the winger couldn’t push his backhand through the goaltender.
Marchand stunned the Kings late in the period with his 23rd goal of the season, as he gathered a loose puck that fluttered right to him off the faceoff and launched a wicked wrister of his own past Campbell to put the Bruins on top 2-1.
After the teams traded scoring chances for the first 15 minutes of the third period, Iafallo got revenge on Rask with the tying goal to make it 2-2 with just 4:23 left. Miscommunication on the back end left the Bruins over-pursuing in the corner, which left Iafallo open in the slot so he could bury the rebound past Rask.
The Kings picked up a power play soon after the goal on a Marchand hooking penalty, but couldn’t generate a single shot on goal. That gave McAvoy the opportunity to score the eventual game-winner, a nifty give-and-go with DeBrusk that the defenseman finished with a tip-in down by the crease.
MCAVOY GIVES THE BRUINS THE LEAD pic.twitter.com/rk3VzlnDW0— Bruins (Guy Boston Sports) (@Bruins_GBos) February 17, 2019
Patrice Bergeron added his 21st goal of the season just 36 seconds later to ice the game for good.
Up Next: The Bruins continue their west coast road trip on Monday when they take on the San Jose Sharks.
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