action:article | category:SPORTS0701 | adString:SPORTS0701 | zoneID:40

Home » Sports » Hockey » Bruins/NHL

May 02. 2014 9:51PM

Missed chances cost B’s in Game 1


The Boston Bruins leave the rink after being defeated 4-3 by the Montreal Canadiens in the second overtime period in game one of the second round of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Banknorth Garden. (Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports)

From the drop of the puck Thursday night against Montreal at the Garden, there was absolutely nothing wrong with the Boston Bruins’ effort — except maybe that they were trying too hard.

Indeed, if effort — and high-quality scoring chances — were all it took, the Bruins would not have dropped this 4-3 Eastern Conference semifinal series Game 1 decision to the Canadiens on defenseman P.K. Subban’s second goal of the night at 4:17 of the second overtime.

Game 2 is today at 12:30 p.m. at TD Garden.

The Habs took home-ice advantage away from the Bruins despite being outshot 51-33. Add up all the shots — on net, blocked or wide of the cage — and the home team had a 98-58 advantage.

The Bruins came up empty on many great chances against goalie Carey Price & Co. The B’s also know they let one slip away they should have had — even if the Canadiens held a 2-0 lead after two periods.

The B’s finally got their game in sync both in the third period — scoring twice to tie the score and a third goal to even the score again — and in the first overtime, playing with tremendous energy and funneling a ton of rubber toward Price. But not in the net.

“It’s always disappointing losing any game in OT,” said Bruins winger Jarome Iginla, one of many B’s who had a slew of near-misses. “I thought we dominated the game. Even when they got out to the lead we had chance after chance. They were just a little tough on going in.

“Some nights that happens. Tip your hat, the goalies were very good. On other nights, (the pucks) go in.

“It (stinks) not winning that one, but we played well. I thought we controlled that game. If we play that way, we’ll get good results. We hit some posts, (Price) made some great saves, sometimes we didn’t get the puck up. But we had good zone time and good looks.

“For the most part, I thought we really carried the play and did a lot of things we want to do.”

But for all their frenzied compete-level, the B’s weren’t getting a whole lot accomplished in the first two periods, as Montreal claimed a two-goal lead and the B’s looked sloppy.

The patient Canadians seemed quite capable of protecting the puck well, covering the Bruins tightly and running out the clock with their two-goal lead. It was working because the B’s let so many good scoring chances fizzle. A sample:

•With 3:05 left in the first, Bruins winger Milan Lucic set up trailing defenseman Torey Krug in mid-slot. It appeared Krug had an open net, if he pullled the trigger immediately, but he hesitated and the opportunity was gone.

•A minute into the second, a great Krug pass sent Bruins center David Krejci in alone, but he pushed his backhander wide — and slammed his stick on the ice in exasperation.

With just over a minute left in the second, Iginla’s pass found Lucic for an open bid from mid-slot — but he missed the net.

•Midway in the third a neat little Krug pass by the blue line cleared the way for Lucic to walk in from left point. But he fumbled the puck.

It was a frustrating night for the home team and its fans — both seeming close to death after two periods. But then, a bolt from out of the blue changed everything and turned a rather uninteresting contest into a great playoff game.

Reilly Smith’s goal from the right circle launched the comeback 6:32 into the third — and the B’s suddenly had their game in order. Krug scored with a slapper from the left circle to make it 2-2. Montreal reclaimed the lead, but with 1:58 left in regulation, defenseman Johnny Boychuk’s bomb from the high slot sent the game into overtime.

“I think we had a lot of opportunities before I scored,” said Smith. “It’s tough when they’re not going in. But then in the third period, we did a better job of getting in front of (Price). That led to some of our chances and goals.

“They have a good goaltender on the other side. We really have to focus on making life a little more difficult for him. Our effort was really good. We got a lot of opportunities. We’ve just got to focus on putting them in the back of the net.”


 NH Sports Angle Ľ more
Links to news and happenings around the world of sports with a Granite State connection, updated daily.

Chowder Potís entertainment halted by bloody baseball rivalry and liquor liability

Heavyweight great 'Gentleman' Gerry Cooney on dramatic career and the hardest comeback of all

NASCAR: Logano interview makes UNH writerís dream come true

Nashua's Fayne moves from Devils to Oilers

Granite State Pro Stock Series to make debut at Lee Speedway

BRIAN McCLOSKEY

Ex-UNH hockey coach indicted on four charges

Growing up a hazard to golf: Real world claims talent from NHGA

Concord man wins National Javelin Championship at 2014 USA Track & Field Masters Championship

Conway's Locke happy with first half, believes best yet to come for Pirates

Court filing details prosecution's perjury allegations against Aaron Hernandez girlfriend

Is N.H. really home to longest mini golf hole on the planet?

Professional hockey coming to Berlin

van Riemsdyk setting high expectations for pro career

Life changes in an instant: Travis Roy shares story at Frank Monahan Foundation event

Improvements help, but traffic still a problem on race weekend in and around Loudon

Itís show time in Chicago for Dartmouthís Hendricks

State sells Windham golf course site for $3.06M

Ex-minor leaguers sue MLB over low salaries

$14M to beaten Giants fan returns security focus

Matt Bonner and brother bring rock show back to Redhook

GM: Twin State Speedway progressing with revival

Foot golf arrives on Seacoast

New Hampshire's Burns gets more than he could ever ask for

Pro runner's yoga class will raise money for clean Kenyan water

Menard wrecks as New Hampshire testing concludes

MORE

 New Hampshire Events Calendar
    

   Ľ SHARE EVENTS FOR PUBLICATION, IT'S FREE!

Upcoming Events

 New Hampshire Business Directory

  

   Ľ ADD YOUR BUSINESS TODAY!