The Bruins knew a Saturday night showdown with the Maple Leafs at TD Garden would be a charged-up affair.
And it was a contest that did not disappoint, with a roaring crowd treated to an absolutely fantastic head-to-head between the Original Six rivals and league’s top two teams, capped by a Matt Grzelcyk game-winning goal scored with just 1:16 remaining in the third period of what finished as a 4-3 win for the Bruins.
“I think it was the first time in a while that we felt that good about our game and obviously we know the rivalry and how good of a team they are, so it was kind of a statement game for us,” Grzelcyk said after the victory. “We pride ourselves on not losing two in a row, so that was the focus tonight.”
With the victory, the Bruins avoided what would’ve been their first losing streak of the season, and captured their first win over the Maple Leafs since Nov. 15, 2019.
“I think the game meant more to us than I imagined before the game,” Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery said. “I think that was my biggest takeaway. And I’m glad it did. We’re proud of not having lost two in a row, and there was a purpose to what we were doing. Not only because it was the second-place team in Toronto that we were playing, but we don’t want to lose two in a row. Because you get into a playoff [series], you lose two in a row, you’re in a bit of a hole.”