There are plenty of reputations a team can have. You don’t want to be known as the team that blows third-period leads without even mustering a point, but the Bruins are building a case.
In surrendering a one-goal lead and suffering a 3-2 loss to the Flyers Wednesday night in Philadelphia, the B’s took no points out of a game they led after two periods for the second straight game. It was the Bruins’ fourth such regulation loss this season, which leads the league despite the fact that the B’s had played fewer games than most NHL teams entering Wednesday’s action.
After suffering a similar fate in Monday’s 2-1 loss to the Ranger, the Bruins held a 2-1 lead over the Flyers entering the third period Wednesday, but goals from Wayne Simmonds and Mark Streit gave Philadelphia a lead just over midway through the third. As was the case against the Rangers, the B’s could not tie the game with Tuukka Rask off the ice for an extra attacker.
The Bruins are now 14-4-1 when leading after two. They had only one such regulation loss last season.
Wednesday’s loss dropped the Bruins to 1-2-1 on their current road trip. The five-game trip will conclude Friday in Buffalo.
Here are four more things we learned Wednesday:
PASTRNAK HURT, VATRANO RETURNS
David Pastrnak was a surprise absence from Wednesday’s game, with the Bruins announcing after warmups that Pastrnak was day-to-day with an upper-body injury. His absence allowed Frank Vatrano to re-enter the lineup after being a healthy scratch Monday.
Pastrnak has played just three games since returning to the lineup this month. It was a foot injury that had kept him out previously, but it’s also worth noting that he played through a finger injury at World Juniors recently.
With Pastrnak out and Vatrano back, the most notable change to the Bruins’ lines was Jimmy Hayes’ promotion to Boston’s first line. The lineup looked as such:
THE OTHER MILLER SCORES
The Bruins have two right-shot defensemen named Miller. One is known for offense and the other is Kevan Miller. After Wednesday, they both have the same number of goals on the season.
Kevan Miller’s third goal of the season was a biggie, as it got the Bruins on the board and tied the game at a goal apiece in the second period. With Boston’s fourth line and third pairing on the ice, Max Talbot got to a puck that Steve Mason had sent up the boards. Seeing Miller on the other side of the ice, Talbot sent the puck to the right circle, where Miller fired a wrister past Mason to make it a 1-1 game.
Miller came an assist away from a Gordie Howe hat trick, as he fought Brayden Schenn after the Philadelphia forward crushed Torey Krug with a clean hit early in the first period.
SPOONFUL OF APPLES
Ryan Spooner fired a shot during a second-period power play that produced a rebound that was easily put back in by Loui Eriksson. The play gave Spooner his seventh assist in his last seven games.
With his recent hot streak (one goal, seven assists over the last seven), Spooner continues to push for what would be a pretty surprising 60-point season. With nine goals and 21 assists and having played in all 42 of the Bruins’ games to this point, Spooner’s currently on pace for 59 points.
OFFENSE STILL QUIET
Though the Bruins scored multiple goals Wednesday (which has been a challenge for them), they’re still not producing at nearly the pace they did earlier in the season. The B’s have a total of four goals over their last three games (0-2-1) and they’ve averaged just 1.83 goals over their last six4 games (1-4-1).
Needless to say, the Bruins need David Krejci back and for Brett Connolly (19 games without a goal) to get going. Having Pastrnak out for any stretch doesn’t help either.