By Ty Anderson, 985TheSportsHub.com
The Boston Bruins and Calgary Flames appeared paced for your classic 30-to-29 game on Friday night.
But when things finally settled down after a six-goal first period that left these teams knotted up at 3-3, it was the Bruins who came through with the game-deciding seventh goal to earn their 11th win in their last 12 outings.
Down 2-0 just minutes into the first period, and then by a 3-1 score just 3:23 into the first period, the Bruins rallied to knot things up at 3-3 thanks to a a pair of goals from Patrice Bergeron, and a game-tying breakaway strike from Charlie Coyle.
And in the second period, it was Brad Marchand who used strong stick positioning to tip a Brandon Carlo shot through the Flames’ Cam Talbot for Boston’s first (and only) lead of the night just 52 seconds into the middle frame.
“I thought we showed some great resilience staying with it and sticking to the program and bouncing back after those early goals,” Bergeron, who led the Bruins with two goals by the night’s end, told reporters after the victory. “I thought we settled down and played more sound hockey and didn’t give up as many quality chances.”
That defensive shutdown was the most important part of the Black and Gold’s fifth straight victory, too, as the Bruins were more than willing to take the hits and block the shots to preserve their one-goal edge throughout the final 39 minutes and change of this one.
And after allowing three goal in the first period, B’s netminder Jaroslav Halak buckled down and finished with 18 saves on 21 shots thrown his way for his 16th win of the season win of the season, and fifth straight win dating back to Jan. 21.
As Joakim Nordstrom took a seat in the press box as a healthy scratch, Anton Blidh returned to the Boston lineup for the first time since Feb. 8, and finished with five hits with one shot on goal and one blocked shot in 10:54 of time on ice. Blidh is the likely odd man out (read as: bound for a ticket back down to Providence) upon deadline weekend acquisition Ondrej Kase’s arrival to the Bruins on Monday, as a healthy Kase would give the B’s 15 forwards and seven defenders.
The Bruins will head to Vancouver for a Saturday night meeting with the Canucks. Boston defeated the Canucks by a 4-0 final in their only prior head-to-head this season, which came at TD Garden back on Feb. 4. If you don’t really remember much about that game, it’s because it was the same night the Red Sox (originally) traded Mookie Betts to the Dodgers.