Boston Bruins captain, Patrice Bergeron, and teammate, Brad Marchand, each had two goals and three points in a, 6-1, win over the Philadelphia Flyers Saturday night at TD Garden.
Two B’s earned their first career National Hockey League point, while another scored their first as a Bruin in the outburst of offense as Jaroslav Halak (1-0-0, 1.44 goals against average, .938 save percentage in two games played) made 16 saves on 17 shots faced for a .941 SV% in the win for Boston.
Flyers goaltender, Carter Hart (2-2-1, 4.19 GAA, .880 SV% in five games played) stopped 20 out of 26 shots faced for a .769 SV% in the loss.
Boston improved to 3-1-1 (seven points) on the season and took command of 2nd place in the MassMutual NHL East Division, bumping Philadelphia (now 3-2-1, seven points) to 3rd place in the division.
The Bruins also improved to 2-0-0 at home (two games) this season, while Claude Giroux took part in his 610th game as the captain of the Flyers– tying Bobby Clarke for the most games as captain in franchise history.
Bruce Cassidy made a few changes to his Bruins lineup, swapping Anders Bjork with Trent Frederic– promoting Frederic to the third line and demoting Bjork to the fourth line in the process.
On defense, Cassidy replaced Matt Grzelcyk (lower body) with Connor Clifton, who made his season debut alongside Brandon Carlo on the second pairing.
Greg McKegg, Par Lindholm, John Moore, Urho Vaakanainen, Dan Vladar and Karson Kuhlman all were healthy scratches and/or taxi squad members on Saturday night.
Meanwhile, Ondrej Kase (upper body) missed his third game since being injured in New Jersey on Jan. 16th, David Pastrnak (hip) missed his fifth and has yet to make his season debut and Grzelcyk (lower body) missed his first game this season due to an injury in Thursday night’s, 5-4, shootout win over the Flyers.
Almost midway through the opening frame, Mark Friedman hooked Frederic and was assessed a minor infraction at 7:55 of the first period.
It didn’t take Boston’s power play unit that long to find the back of the net as Bergeron (2) pounced on a rebound and slipped the puck past Hart to give the Bruins a, 1-0, lead.
Nick Ritchie (2) and David Krejci (4) tallied the assists on Bergeron’s power-play goal at 8:09 of the first period.
After one period of action Saturday night, the B’s led, 1-0, on the scoreboard and, 10-4, in shots on goal.
Boston also held the advantage in blocked shots (7-2), takeaways (4-1) and hits (11-8), while Philadelphia led in giveaways (3-2) and faceoff win percentage (68-32).
The Flyers had not yet seen any time on the skater advantage heading into the first intermission, while the Bruins were 1/1 on the power play.
About a minute into the middle frame, the B’s had a great scoring chance that just didn’t pan out.
Instead, Philadelphia emerged with a rush the opposite way, in which Jakub Voracek sent a shot pass from the boards to Kevin Hayes (3) for the tip-in past Halak.
Hayes’ goal tied the game, 1-1, at 1:14 of the second period and was assisted by Voracek (6).
But the game wouldn’t remain tied for long as Charlie Coyle got a backhand spin pass through the low slot to Craig Smith (1) as the Boston winger pounced on the puck and hit the twine while Hart was out of position.
Smith’s goal– his first as a Bruin– was assisted by Coyle (1) and Jeremy Lauzon (1) at 2:30 of the second period– marking a span of 1:16 between Hayes’ tying goal and Smith’s eventual game-winning goal.
Almost midway through the middle frame, Voracek received a roughing minor and was sent to the penalty box at 7:28, but Boston’s power play wasn’t able to convert on the ensuing skater advantage.
Moments later, the Coyle tripped Giroux and cut a rut to the sin bin at 12:37, presenting a skater advantage to the Flyers.
Philly was unsuccessful on the resulting power play, however.
Late in the period, Frederic setup Coyle (2) for a one-handed deflection goal over Hart’s glove side and under the crossbar to give Boston their first two-goal lead of the season.
Frederic (1) had the primary assist, while Smith (2) had the secondary assist on Coyle’s goal and the Bruins led, 3-1, at 17:50 of the second period.
With an assist on the goal, Frederic officially registered his first point in the NHL.
Entering the second intermission, the Bruins led, 3-1, on the scoreboard and, 16-12, in shots on goal, despite the Flyers holding an, 8-6, advantage in the second period alone.
Boston held the advantage in blocked shots (12-7), takeaways (8-4) and hits (22-13) through the first 40 minutes of action, while Philadelphia led in giveaways (5-4) and faceoff win% (58-43).
The Flyers were 0/1 and the Bruins were 1/2 on the power play after two periods.
Marchand (2) kicked off the scoring in the final frame after initially sending a shot wide of the net before Jake DeBrusk kept the puck low in the attacking zone, whereby Bergeron scooped it up before passing it to Marchand for the close range one-timer past Hart.
Bergeron (3) and DeBrusk (1) notched the helpers on Marchand’s first goal of the game and the Bruins extended their lead to, 4-1, at 4:13 of the third period.
About a couple of minutes later, Friedman earned unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for some heated words and shoving aimed at Frederic after a stoppage in play and presented Boston with another power play at 6:54 of the third period.
65 seconds later, the Bruins converted on the ensuing skater advantage when Marchand (3) fired a shot under Hart’s glove into the twine from the faceoff dot to the Philadelphia netminder’s left side.
Ritchie (3) picked up his second assist of the night, while Jakub Zboril (1) earned the secondary assist, which was also the first point of his NHL career.
Marchand’s second goal of the night gave the B’s a, 5-1, lead at 7:59 of the third period, while on the power play.
Less than a minute later, Bjork hooked Michael Raffl and set the Flyers up with their last power play of the night.
Philly’s power play was powerless as the Bruins made the kill.
Later, James van Riemsdyk tripped Coyle at 13:17, presenting Boston with yet another skater advantage.
This time, Bergeron (3) finished the night’s scoring with Boston’s third power-play goal on yet another rebound that the Bruins captain banked off of the Flyers goaltender and into the net.
Marchand (4) and Charlie McAvoy (1) had the assists on Bergeron’s power-play goal at 13:33 of the third period and the Bruins led, 6-1.
At the sound of the final horn, Boston had won, 6-1, and finished the night leading in shots on goal, 26-17, including a, 10-5, advantage in the final frame alone.
The Bruins wrapped up Saturday night with the final advantage in blocked shots (14-10) and hits (26-24), while the Flyers ended the game leading in giveaways (6-4) and faceoff win% (54-46).
Philadelphia went 0/2 on the power play, while Boston notched a 3/4 success rate on the skater advantage in the 60-minute effort.
With Bergeron wracking up another three-point night in his career, he became the 11th player in Bruins franchise history to record at least 50 games with three or more points.
Phil Esposito has the club record for more games (140) with at least three or more points.
Boston improved to 11-0-3 in their last 14 regular season home games against Philadelphia, which is also their longest active point streak at home against any opponent.
The Bruins improved to 2-0-0 when scoring the game’s first goal, 2-0-0 when leading after the first period and 2-0-0 when leading after two periods this season.
Boston continues their four-game homestand (2-0-0) with two games against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Jan. 26th and Jan. 28th before hitting the road down to D.C. on Jan. 30th and Feb. 1st, then Philadelphia on Feb. 3rd and Feb. 5th.