Postgame Breakdown: Early flurry propels B's past Flyers
Jordan Caron and Rich Peverley set up Chris Kelly's first-period goal in Saturday's matinee against Philly. (Getty Images)
Final: Boston 3, Philadelphia 0
Recap: After an opening half of the first period that was quite possibly completely void of a scoring chance, the Bruins exploded, starting with a power-play strike from Tyler Seguin. Just 95 seconds later, Chris Kelly made it 2-0 after taking a feed from Jordan Caron and wristing a shot from the slot past Ilya Bryzgalov.
The B’s continued to attack and upped their lead to three less than a minute after Kelly’s goal, with Dan Paille tipping a Greg Campbell pass by Bryzgalov from the top of the crease.
The Flyers effort to claw back into the contest was virtually nonexistent. Tuukka Rask made 23 saves, 99 percent of which were worthy of the “necessary stops” label, as the B’s cruised to a 3-0 victory.
Records: Boston 16-3-3, 35 points; Philadelphia 11-14-1, 23 points
Key Play of the Game: After the Bruins went ahead 3-0, The Flyers responded by – “responded” being the loose terms here – putting just two pucks on net in the remainder of the period. The closest one came from 52 feet away. That sequence pretty much summed up the afternoon for Philadelphia.
Connolly’s Commendations: Way to make an immediate impact, Mr. Caron. I don’t think it’d be much of a stretch to say this was the third line’s best game all season. They were strong defensively and had a point apiece. Looks like the decision to recall Caron provided a necessary spark.
As far as shutouts go, this was a piece of cake for Rask. Nevertheless, he deserves a congratulatory high-five for beating a team he hadn’t faced since May of 2010 when the Flyers, as you may remember, erased a 3-0 deficit in the game and the series to complete their historic comeback in Game 7 at TD Garden.
Nice to see the first line spend majority of the game in the offensive zone. David Krejci and Milan Lucic picked up assists on Seguin’s power-play goal. Along with Nathan Horton, the trio – thanks in large part to the size of their wingers – did a solid job of getting chances against Bryzgalov during 5-on-5 play.
Connolly’s Critiques: By Patrice Bergeron’s standards, this was a pretty “blah” game. No. 37 attempted seven shots, three of which were blocked and two of which missed the net completely. His passing was off, as a number of centering passes went directly onto a Flyers’ stick. Add it all up, and his line didn’t do anything noteworthy at even strength.
Notes: Rich Peverley’s assist on Kelly’s goal was the 200th point of his NHL career. The Flyers were 5-1-1 in their previous seven games at TD Garden.
Final Thoughts: Shy of that flurry of goals in the opening frame, this turned out to be arguably the dullest Flyers-Bruins game I can ever recall. It was highly reminiscent of the Philly’s final two games in Boston during the second round of the 2011 playoffs. Just no real fight in the Flyers today whatsoever. Strange times.
Next: The Bruins will head up to Ottawa to square off with the Senators Monday night.