Ed Mulholland/USA Today Sports

Bruins 5, Devils 3: Strange bounces benefit Bruins

Ty Anderson
February 12, 2018 - 2:04 am

How strange was Sunday’s 5-3 win over the Devils?

Well, Adam McQuaid scored the game-winning goal when Drew Stafford came through with an unbelievably perfect deflection of McQuaid’s shot through Eddie Lack. Stafford, of course, is no longer on the B’s, meaning this came on the wrong side of the ice.

Yeah. Strange to say the least.

But it was also the fitting end to what was a pinball-like 60-minute affair that saw the Bruins and Devils trade goals for a 3-3 draw through two periods, and with the game having no distinct feel in terms of one teaming having a leg up on the other.

The Devils heavily out-chanced the Bruins, and the Bruins simply did not have an answer for what was pure domination from Taylor Hall. But it seemed that the bounces consistently favored the Bruins, even before the McQuaid goal in the third period.  

Torey Krug scored Boston’s first goal when he banked a puck off the Devils’ Nico Hischier and through Lack for an own-goal on Jersey, scored with the Bruins on the kill. Tim Schaller then took advantage of some poor positioning from Lack and scored the B’s second shorthanded goal of the first period, and beat the buzzer in the process.

The Schaller goal would hold after a lengthy review -- the Bruins were likely bailed out by the goal call on the ice, as no replay definitively proved anything one way or the other -- and served as the first time the B’s had scored two shorthanded goals in the same period since Apr. 10, 2013. (Fittingly, that also came against the Devils.)

And when the Devils tied things up with a Hall strike scored just 31 seconds into the second period, the Bruins stormed back with a Krug power-play bullet scored two seconds into a power-play opportunity that came just two minutes after Hall’s goal.

Again, while the Bruins were not playing particularly great, these were the fortunate bounces that completely eluded the B’s in Saturday’s loss to the Sabres in Boston.

The Bruins, hanging on for dear life, also proved willing to pay the price for victory after the McQuaid go-ahead goal in the third period. No play spoke to this more than Brad Marchand (a wanted man in New Jersey after his elbow to Marcus Johansson a few weeks back) and his willingness to absorb a gigantic hit from Damon Severson to complete a pass to Patrice Bergeron for the game-sealing empty-net tally.

This, again, was not something the Bruins seemed willing to do in their Saturday loss to the Sabres. And Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy did not hide from that in his postgame address Saturday, noting that the B’s were too cute and that they needed more ‘meat and potatoes’ from the rest of their lineup. They got that Sunday.

Along with some bounces that made this one bizarre game.

The Bruins return to Boston for a Tuesday night showdown with the Flames. 

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