Bruins show the hoped-for defiant reaction in Toronto

After the last three games without a win (0-2-1), those involved in the Boston Bruins camp were confident in the run-up to the encounter with the Toronto Maple Leafs that they would soon be able to overcome the small crisis in the results. The optimism displayed was rewarded on Wednesday evening. The guests prevailed 5:2 in the Scotiabank Arena in Toronto and impressively underlined their exceptional position in the league ahead of the NHL All-Star Game 2023.

“I think that was the best team performance we’ve shown in a long time,” said a satisfied Bruins coach Jim Montgomery after the final siren. “I don’t think relief is the right word. For us today it was about finding our standard and our team identity again.”

Video: [email protected]: Marner hits from the circle

That defiant reaction saw the Bruins improve their streak to 39-7-5 and become only the tenth NHL team to win at least 39 games in a season before an Olympic or All-Star hiatus. The Anaheim Ducks (41) had previously achieved this in 2013/14, the Chicago Blackhawks (41) in 2009/10, the Washington Capitals (41) in 2009/10, the Pittsburgh Penguins (40) in 2013/14, and the San Jose Sharks in 2009/10 (40), 1984/85 the Edmonton Oilers (40), 2013/14 the St. Louis Blues (39), 2005/06 the Carolina Hurricanes (39) and 2005/06 the Detroit Red Wings (39).

Aside from the recent streak of three games without a win, which was the longest streak without a double point for the Boston side this season, the Bruins have been in impressive form since October. They’re sitting first in the Atlantic Division and even the league, have the second-highest points haul in franchise history and a regular season that looks set to be one to remember. The Bruins are seven points clear of the second-placed Carolina Hurricanes in the race for the Presidents’ Trophy.

After the NHL All-Star Weekend 2023 in Florida, the main round is on its way to the finish line, where the top of the league will primarily be about preserving this form of the first few months and, if possible, expanding it selectively.

Goalkeeper shone in the Toronto success Linus Ullmark with 33 saves. The goalie will also represent Boston at the upcoming 2023 Honda NHL All-Star Weekend on Friday and Saturday in Sunrise, Fla. “He was incredible in the first half of the game,” said the Bruins forward Pavel Zacha his goalkeeper. “He got us into the game. He was there when we needed him. He’s that in almost every game. He’s a great goalkeeper. Both goalkeepers that we have available (Ullmark and Jeremy Swayman), are incredible. That helps us a lot when we’re going through a weak phase and miss so many chances. They keep us in the game until we can push and move forward.” In addition to the goalkeeper, Zacha, who scored two goals in the win, and Charlie Coylewho received two assists.

Video: [email protected]: Zacha hits the target

After a goalless opening period, the encounter in Toronto really picked up momentum in the second half. Derek Forbort gave the Bruins a 1-0 lead with a man down in the 27th minute when he picked up and successfully converted a pass from Coyle. The Boston representation has a record of 25-0-3 this season if they have scored the first goal.

Mitchell Marner equalized for the Maple Leafs in the power play to make it 1:1 (30th, PP) when he received a pass from goalkeeper Ilya Samsonov at the blue line, broke into the zone and scored with a low shot from the right faceoff spot. The guests took a 2-1 lead after 12:33 minutes of the second period when Brandon Carlo a passport from Hampus Lindholm, who was on the blue line, picked it up and shot in from the right faceoff circle. It was his second goal in his 47th game this season.

“It’s always nice for me as I’m not a big goalscorer, but it definitely gives me a bit of confidence for the game and for the break,” said Carlo optimistically. A.J. Greer made it 3-1 in the 43rd minute when he threw himself back against David fight was able to prevail and scored. “It was strange. I looked around and didn’t see any of us on the ice at first. But of course I was happy anyway,” said Greer.

Video: [email protected]: Greer uses a counterattack to score

Jarnkrok Street shortened the score for the home side to 2:3 (49th) when he rebounded after a shot from Mark Giordano sunk in the box. 30 seconds later, Zacha scored the decisive 4:2 (50) when he TJ Brodie played around just behind the blue line and then successfully netted. With just under eight minutes to go, Zacha scored again when he received a pass from David Krejci sunk to the final score in the meshes of the goal.

“That was our goal before the game, we didn’t want to go into the break with a loss, especially not after three defeats in a row,” explained Zacha. “We managed that. We played really well for the full 60 minutes. It was a solid team effort today.”

“I just congratulated the boys on their great performance over the past few months,” said Coach Montgomery, proud of his team’s performance. “It was fun but I said we have to do better and I know we can do better because we’re so professional and willing to work in this dressing room.”

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