Final: Boston 4, Detroit 1
Recap: With 8:56 gone and the Bruins looking like the better team out of the chute, Niklas Kronwall was guilty of holding Loui Eriksson and went to the box. Just 15 ticks into the man advantage, Torey Krug ripped a shot from the point past Jimmy Howard with Zdeno Chara screening in front, staking Boston to a 1-0 lead. At 16:49 of the opening frame, the Wings' top line evened things up. Tuukka Rask kicked a rebound out to Henrik Zetterberg, and the Detroit captain fired it home.
In the second, Brad Marchand tallied on the opening shift with a snipe over Howard's right shoulder. Boston made it a 3-1 game a little more than seven minutes later on Jordan Caron's first (genuine) goal of the season.
The Wings mounted little pressure in the second half of the tilt, during which the B's made it a three-goal game with their second power-play strike of the night, courtesy of Zdeno Chara.
Records: Boston 2-0-0, four points; Detroit 2-1-0, four points
Key Play of the Game: Caron's goal truly did in the Wings. On the play, Reilly Smith showed great patience, passing on sending a backhander Howard's way that likely wouldn't have found twine, instead sending a pass to Caron, who had an open near side of the net to shoot at.
Connolly's Commendations: The third line (Caron, Smith, Chris Kelly) was tremendous again. More on them later.
Krug was deservedly named the game's first star, as he scored a power-play goal and set up another. It sure feels wacky to have confidence in the Bruins when they're on the man advantage. Krug is a big part of that.
There was noticeable improvement from the fourth line in this one. The Paille-Campbell-Thornton trio was quiet against the Bolts, but they set up a few chances for themselves. If a centering pass or two connected, they could've easily potted one.
Connolly's Critiques: No complaints tonight.
Notes: Brad Marchand needed help getting off the ice after getting laid out on a semi-inadvertent hit by Justin Abdelkader. He missed a few shifts in the second period but eventually returned. For Krug, the goal was the first regular-season tally of his NHL career.
Final Thoughts: Boston markedly improved across the board after a so-so showing on opening night. The defense tightened up, the third line was tremendous and Rask made all the necessary saves to help the Bruins take care of business against a team that was clearly feeling the effects of having played three games in four nights.
Next: The Bruins won't be back in action until Thursday when they play host to the Avalanche.