Though the Bruins came less than a minute away from the second point, the B’s picked up a point with a 3-2 overtime loss to the Ducks to at least gain some ground on the Senators. With the Senators still controlling the Bruins’ destiny, that missed point could prove very costly.
With the Senators trailing the Rangers handily at the time of Boston’s loss, the Bruins positioned themselves to tie the Senators with 85 points, though Ottawa will have a game in hand.
The Bruins were on the way to a 2-1 regulation victory until Corey Perry redirected a puck past Tuukka Rask with Frederik Andersen pulled and 38.5 seconds remaining.
Boston had a 2-1 lead as a result of a pair of power-play goals from Ryan Spooner and Loui Eriksson on a night that saw the B’s keep Anaheim off the man advantage for most of the night. A Zdeno Chara hooking penalty in overtime changed that, and though the Bruins managed to kill it off, Ryan Getzlaf beat Rask on the next shift to end the game.
The Bruins will next play the surging Rangers Saturday at TD Garden.
Here are four more things we learned Thursday:
David Krejci made his return to the lineup and had a pair of assists after missing the last 15 games with a torn MCL.
Krejci skated at right wing on Patrice Bergeron‘s line with Brad Marchand. The trio was matched up mostly against Anaheim’s top line of Ryan Getzlaf between Jiri Sekac and Corey Perry. He also manned the point on Boston’s first power play unit in place of the injured Dougie Hamilton.
The veteran forward’s return to the lineup came with an early flub, as Krejci mishandled a pass in the neutral zone on a first-period power play, kicking it to Jakob Silfverberg to give the Ducks a shorthanded partial 2-on-0. Silfverberg missed the net, rendering Krejci’s misplay less costly.
Krejci did pick up an assist on Ryan Spooner’s second-period goal and added another on Loui Eriksson’s third-period strike.
The Bruins need to be rock-solid in all three zones the rest of the way. Matt Bartkowski getting treated like a turnstile in the defensive zone won’t fly.
Patrick Maroon walked right around Bartkowski in the second period before firing a shot that beat Tuukka Rask and gave the Ducks an early lead.
Bartkowski began the night paired with Zach Trotman on Boston’s third pairing, but some in-game changes saw Bartkowski take some shifts with Adam McQuaid while Zdeno Chara played with Trotman.
SPOONER TAKES LEAD IN GOALS SINCE RECALL…
Kudos to Ryan Spooner for being able to handle an unsettled puck on a second-period power play and fire it past Frederik Andersen, who looked surprised by the shot.
Replays showed that the puck actually may have been standing up on its side at the point of release for Spooner. However he took that shot, it made for his sixth goal of the season. Given that all six of his goals came after Krejci’s injury on February 20, Spooner has the Bruins in goals since his late-February recall.
Spooner’s line was on the ice for Maroon’s goal, making it the second five-on-five goal the Lucic-Spooner-Pastrnak has allowed. The trio has scored seven when all on the ice together.
…UNTIL ERIKSSON TIES HIM
Six goals in the last 16 games was something that, at the time of Spooner’s goal, only he had achieved. A third-period power-play goal from Loui Eriksson pulled the veteran winger even with Spooner, however.
With Anaheim killing off a tripping penalty from Simon Despres taken late in the second period, Eriksson jumped on the rebound of a Torey Krug point shot, beating Hampus Lindholm to the puck and sent it past Andersen to give Boston a 2-1 lead.