Boston Bruins

Vladimir Tarasenko of the St. Louis Blues celebrates his second period goal past Tuukka Rask of the Boston Bruins in Game 1 of the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on May 27, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)

Vladimir Tarasenko of the St. Louis Blues celebrates his second period goal past Tuukka Rask of the Boston Bruins in Game 1 of the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on May 27, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)

By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com

BOSTON — The Bruins hit rock-bottom. Except this is the Bruins, so they really didn’t. They just decided that they weren’t going to let the Blues win. So the Bruins followed up a potential disaster with as dominant a run as they’ve have had in the 2019 playoffs.

Many teams would not have recovered from the second goal that the Bruins allowed on Monday night in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final. It started when David Pastrnak believed Zdeno Chara would trail him behind the net. Unfortunately, Chara had gone to the net-front. So Pastrnak’s drop-pass went right to Blues center Brayden Schenn, who fed it in front to Vladimir Tarasenko for one of the easiest one-timer goals he’ll ever score.

To go down 2-0 against a tough, stingy Blues team, in such ugly fashion, was perhaps the Bruins’ lowest point of the playoffs so far. They’ve been down in prior series. They’ve been losing by more. But no single moment felt as demoralizing as Vladimir Tarasenko’s gift of a goal. Considering the heightened stakes and the nature of the goal, it could have crushed the Bruins entirely.

Instead, it had the opposite effect. The gaffe became a galvanizing moment.

May 27, 2019; Boston, MA: St. Louis Blues right wing Vladimir Tarasenko celebrates after scoring a goal against the Boston Bruins in the second period in game one of the 2019 Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden. (Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports)

May 27, 2019; Boston, MA: St. Louis Blues right wing Vladimir Tarasenko celebrates after scoring a goal against the Boston Bruins in the second period in game one of the 2019 Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden. (Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports)

From that point on, the Bruins asserted themselves as the superior team with four unanswered goals and a dominant possession game to seize a 1-0 lead in the Cup Final. It started with a simple conversation among the team: were we really going to let it happen this way?

“On the bench it’s kind of like, ‘We better get our act together or they’re going to embarrass us in this first game,'” Bruins forward David Backes told reporters after the game. “I think we did a good job of saying we’re going to throw our best game from here forward at them, and see where the chips lay, and they found their way to our side of the table.”

After Tarasenko’s goal to go up 2-0, the Blues held a 14-6 advantage over the Bruins in shot attempts after exactly 21 minutes of play. From then on, the Bruins out-attempted the Blues 33-14.

“It’s almost like that second [Blues] goal was good for us, it woke us up a bit,” said winger Marcus Johansson. “After that we took the game over.”

Connor Clifton of the Boston Bruins scores a second period goal past Jordan Binnington of the St. Louis Blues with Robert Bortuzzo on defense in Game One of the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on May 27, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Connor Clifton of the Boston Bruins scores a second period goal past Jordan Binnington of the St. Louis Blues with Robert Bortuzzo on defense in Game One of the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on May 27, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Some of the Bruins’ sudden momentum could also be a case of getting their legs under them after working off the obvious rust. But whatever the reason, the momentum was real. It manipulated the Blues into slapdash puck management and a lack of discipline, and they never caught up.

“Yeah 2-0 lead, it was early on hockey and we just didn’t play our game after that,” said Blues center Brayden Schenn, who scored a goal and assist in Game 1. “I thought we had a good start to the first period, got to our game a little bit. We just started getting too spread out, we weren’t getting pucks in, turning the puck over. Whether it was by accident or on purpose we just got to take care of the puck. They’re good off the rush, they got mobile defensemen and they made the most of it.”

The Blues may simply be dealing with a far better, deeper team. But the Bruins’ impressive switch-flipping and dominating comeback once again demonstrated their resilience. They’re hard to kill. So much so that one of their lowest moments turned out to be a catalyst for a complete takeover.

St. Louis learned the hard way that they’ll have to put 60 minutes together to get to triple-zeroes with more goals than the Bruins. But it appears that they’ve awoken a beast. They’ll need to wake something up within themselves to have an answer for the kind of barrage that the Bruins threw at them on Monday.

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at matthew.dolloff@bbgi.com.