Patrice Bergeron (3-0–3 totals) scored a hat trick and his linemates, Brad Marchand (2-3–5) and David Pastrnak (0-5–5) each had five-point nights as the Boston Bruins beat the New York Rangers, 7-4, Saturday night at Madison Square Garden.
Bruins goaltender, Jaroslav Halak (3-1-1 record, 2.59 goals against average, .919 save percentage in five games played) made 25 saves on 29 shots against (.862 SV%) in the win for the B’s.
Henrik Lundqvist (2-3-0, 3.58 GAA, .906 SV% in six games played) stopped 27 out of 31 shots faced (.871 SV%) in 40 minutes played prior to being replaced before the third period by Alexandar Georgiev (1-2-1, 2.70 GAA, .923 SV% in four games played) for the final frame.
Georgiev turned aside nine out of the 11 shots he faced for an .818 SV% in the loss.
Boston improved to 8-1-2 (18 points) on the season and remained in command of 2nd place in the Atlantic Division, meanwhile, New York remained stagnant in 7th place in the Metropolitan Division with a 3-5-1 record (seven points).
For the 11th time this season, Kevan Miller (knee) and John Moore (shoulder) were out of commission due to injuries. Miller should return to full practice later this week, however, while Moore is still on track for a return in mid-November.
David Krejci (upper body) missed his 4th consecutive game, but is hopeful to return Tuesday night against the San Jose Sharks.
Karson Kuhlman (fractured right tibia) is still out and was placed on the injured reserve as he’ll be sidelined for at least four weeks.
Meanwhile, Joakim Nordstrom (infection) and Chris Wagner (foot) were new additions to Boston’s injury list Sunday night as both players took part in Saturday night’s, 3-0, shutout win over the St. Louis Blues, but were not well enough to go in New York on Sunday.
Nordstrom’s been battling some lingering issues, while Wagner blocked a shot against the Blues and went down the tunnel briefly before returning moments later on Saturday.
As a result of the mountain of injuries for the Bruins, Peter Cehlarik was recalled from the Providence Bruins (AHL) on emergency basis and made his 2019-20 season debut for Boston against the Rangers.
B’s head coach, Bruce Cassidy, inserted Cehlarik on the fourth line left wing and reintroduced David Backes on the right wing of the fourth line, leaving Steven Kampfer as the only healthy scratch for Boston.
Jesper Fast (personal reasons) was a healthy scratch for New York on Sunday.
Nearly 30 seconds into the game, Rangers defender, Brady Skjei tripped up Bruins alternate captain, Patrice Bergeron, and was sent to the penalty box for a minor infraction.
Boston went to the power play 35 seconds into the first period, but couldn’t muster much of anything on the skater advantage and instead took a penalty of their own shortly after New York killed off Skjei’s minor.
Cehlarik was called for hooking Libor Hajek at 2:55 of the first period and the Rangers went on their first power play of the night.
It didn’t work.
Midway through the opening frame, however, Brendan Smith let go of a shot from just past the blue line that deflected off of Torey Krug in front of his own goaltender.
Micheal Haley (1) pounced on the rebound to give the Rangers the, 1-0, lead with his first goal of the season at 10:19.
Smith (3) and Lias Andersson (1) notched the assists as New York was the first to get on the scoreboard and carried their one-goal lead into the first intermission– even after botching another power play at 12:17, after Marchand cut a rut to the sin bin for high sticking Rangers blue liner, Jacob Trouba.
After one period, New York led, 1-0, on the scoreboard, despite being outshot, 10-7, by Boston.
Both teams were pretty even in the statistical categories unrelated to shots on net and goals as the Blue Shirts led in blocked shots (9-6), giveaways (12-4) and hits (12-6) and the B’s led in takeaways (1-0) and faceoff win percentage (60-40).
The Rangers were 0/2 on the skater advantage and the Bruins were 0/1 on the power play entering the second period.
It didn’t take long for Boston to tie things up in the middle frame as Bergeron (3) scored his first goal of the night 11 seconds into the second period.
Pastrnak crashed the net and was tripped by a New York defender into Lundqvist– knocking the Rangers netminder to the ice and allowing for Bergeron to swoop in and bury the rebound.
Officials reviewed the play and determined that the call on the ice stood– it was indeed a good goal, as the play was deemed a “continuous motion” cause by New York’s own volition.
Pastrnak (8) and Marchand (11) tabbed the assists and the game was tied, 1-1.
Less than a minute later– 57 seconds, to be exact– Marchand (6) received a pass from Pastrnak, held onto the puck as he entered the low slot, deked Lundqvist off his rocker and scored to make it, 2-1, Boston at 1:08 of the second period.
Pastrnak (9) picked up his second assist of the night on the goal and Brandon Carlo (2) recorded the secondary assist– his first of two in the game on Sunday night.
About 30 seconds later, Kaapo Kakko caught Charlie McAvoy with a high stick and was sent to the box at 1:36.
Boston didn’t convert on the resulting power play.
Midway through the period, Charlie Coyle (1) scored his first goal of the season after receiving a tape-to-tape pass from McAvoy after the Bruins defender wrapped around the net.
McAvoy (3) and Zdeno Chara (1) tallied the assists on Coyle’s goal and the B’s led, 3-1, at 9:27 of the second period.
Less than a minute later, feeling as though he had been wronged on the non-call against Pastrnak (even though it was his own defender’s doing that caused No. 88 in black-and-gold to crash into the New York goaltender), Lundqvist lunged at Pastrnak while the Bruin was attempting to make a play of the puck in the trapezoid.
Marchand and Lundqvist got into a shoving match immediately thereafter and each were disciplined with roughing minors at 10:01.
Pavel Buchnevich served Lundqvist’s penalty in the box for the Rangers as both teams skated 4-on-4 for two minutes before resuming full strength action.
After serving his time in the box, Marchand (7) sniped a shot past Lundqvist to give the Bruins four unanswered goals in the second period.
Whereas on the previous goal, Coyle received a pass on a wraparound from McAvoy, this time around Coyle received a drop pass from Jake DeBrusk, wrapped around the Rangers net and sent a pass to Marchand for the goal.
Coyle (3) and DeBrusk (3) tallied the assists on Marchand’s second goal of the night at 12:09.
After allowing a fourth goal against, Rangers head coach, David Quinn, used his team’s only timeout to refocus his team.
Seconds later, Chara tripped Brendan Lemieux and was sent to the box at 12:36, but New York couldn’t convert on the resulting skater advantage.
Through 40 minutes in “The Big Apple”, the Bruins led the Rangers, 4-1, on the scoreboard and outshot New York, 31-12, entering the second intermission– including a, 21-5, advantage in the middle frame alone for Boston.
The Rangers, however, had taken advantage of nearly everything else, leading in blocked shots (14-7), takeaways (4-3), giveaways (19-8) and hits (18-10), while the Bruins led in faceoff win% (55-46).
New York was 0/3 and the B’s were 0/2 on the skater advantage to begin the final frame of regulation.
Quinn replaced Lundqvist with Georgiev prior to the start of the third period and the young Rangers goaltender was immediately put to the test less than a minute after coming into the game.
Chara (2) blasted a one-timer rocket from the point over Georgiev’s glove and the Bruins extended their lead to four-goals.
Pastrnak (10) and Carlo (3) had the assists on Chara’s goal 43 seconds into the third period and the Bruins led, 5-1.
Moments later, Pastrnak tripped up Buchnevich and presented the Rangers with yet another power play opportunity at 4:18 of the third period.
New York didn’t score and Boston successfully made the kill.
The B’s announced that forward, Par Lindholm, suffered an upper body injury at some point in the action and would not return for the night– this, after New York did the same with Mika Zibanejad back in the first period after Zibanejad got laid out on the ice along the boards on a clean hit from Bergeron.
Almost midway through the third, Buchnevich (2) cut Boston’s lead to three-goals as Artemi Panarin sent a saucer pass across the ice to Tony DeAngelo, whereby DeAngelo spotted Buchnevich in the low slot acting as a bumper for the goal.
DeAngelo (3) and Panarin (3) had the assists and the Rangers trailed, 5-2, at 8:15 of the third period.
Moments later, Bergeron (4) sent a shot from the high slot into the corner of the twine behind Georgiev for his second goal of the game and re-extended Boston’s lead back to four at 11:39.
Marchand (12) and Pastrnak (11) had the assists on Bergeron’s goal and the B’s led, 6-2.
Late in the third, Chara received a delay of game penalty for closing his hand on the puck at 17:52.
Nine seconds later, New York scored on the power play as Chris Kreider (2) snuck around Halak to pocket a rebound off the post and just across the goal line to make it, 6-3.
DeAngelo (4) and Buchnevich (6) were credited with the assists on Kreider’s goal at 18:01.
Just 21 seconds later, Skjei (1) notched his first of the season while following up on another rebound as the Bruins completely broke down in their own zone.
Panarin (4) and Ryan Strome (5) gathered the assists on Skjei’s goal and the Rangers trailed by two, 6-4, in favor of Boston at 18:22.
But with about 90 seconds left on the clock, Quinn pulled Georgiev for an extra attacker, leaving Bergeron (5) with the hat trick goal on an empty net at 19:15 to seal the deal on the win for the B’s, 7-4.
Marchand (13) and Pastrnak (12) each collected their 5th point of the night on Bergeron’s 5th career hat trick.
The Bruins finished the night with the win and with the advantage in shots on goal, 43-29, while the Rangers bounced back to a, 17-12, advantage in shots on net in the third period alone.
New York wrapped up Sunday night’s action leading in blocked shots (16-12), giveaways (25-13), hits (21-15).
The Rangers went 1/5 on the skater advantage in the game.
Boston finished the night with the advantage in faceoff win% (52-49) and 0/2 on the power play.
Bergeron’s hat trick marked Boston’s second hat trick this season as Pastrnak previously scored a hat trick (and a fourth goal for good measure) in the Bruins’, 4-2, victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Oct. 14th.
With five assists on the night– despite not scoring a goal– Pastrnak now has 11-12–23 totals through 11 games played this season.
Boston finishes the month of October at home Tuesday night versus the San Jose Sharks. They begin the month of November at home against the Ottawa Senators on Saturday (Nov. 2nd).
The Bruins went 8-3-2 in back-to-back days with games last season and improved to 4-1-1 on the road this season.
Sunday night’s matchup was the 2,000th regular season game at “The World’s Most Famous Arena”, Madison Square Garden.