Game 63: Islanders 3, Bruins 2

The Good

Nabokov’ed Evgeni Nabokov had no interest in joining the Islanders when the claimed him off of waivers last year, but he reported this season and the Isles must be thrilled that he did. Nabokov was huge today, making 32 saves, including a number of the highlight reel variety. Nabokov’s most important stop came in the game’s dying moments, as he reached out with his arm/stick and blocked Milan Lucic’s bid to tie the game with under 30 seconds left. Had it not been for Nabokov’s performance, the B’s would have run away with this one.

Speedy Seguin Tyler Seguin’s third period goal (the B’s second) was a “classic” Seguin goal, as he took a stretch pass from Zdeno Chara, used his speed to get in behind the Islanders D, and flipped a backhand past Nabokov. Seguin’s speed is arguably his biggest asset, and when he turns it on, he’s dazzling to watch.

Rol-ing along Brian Rolston looked a lot more comfortable today than he did in his two prior Bruin outings, chipping in with the primary assist on Lucic’s power play goal and knocking on the door a couple more times. I thought Rolston would look slow and old with the B’s, but he’s getting better every time out.

The Bad

Tuukka Rask’s injury It seemed innocent enough, and that’s what makes it so scary: all the puck did was deflect a bit, and it caused Rask to reach/stretch to his left; when he did, his left leg (I suspect it was his knee) buckled somehow, and Rask immediately fell to the ice, tossed his stick, and started pointing to his knee. He was helped off by his teammates, didn’t put any weight on it, and reportedly left the Garden on crutches. Rask had his left knee scoped over the summer after “tweaking it” last January (2011). Not good. There are already rumblings tonight that Rask is done for the year, but the team likely won’t make anything official until tomorrow.

Still no 60 Another pretty poor effort from the B’s. They came out fast, looked good, sputtered, and then roared to the finish, stopping just short of the win. Same ol’ story, really. I haven’t seen a full-60 out of this team in weeks. Is it fatigue? Injuries? Both? Disinterest? I don’t know, but it needs to be fixed fast.

-Talkin’ bout my reputation Brad Marchand got whacked in the chin towards the end of a period today and went down to the ice holding his face. Play continued, the period ended, and replays showed an Islander stick did indeed clip Marchand in the chin, drawing blood. What should have been a four-minute Bruin power play instead was nothing, mainly due to Marchand’s reputation. I highly doubt neither ref saw the infraction; instead, they probably saw Marchand’s number and assumed he was faking. Right or wrong, that’s the reputation Marchand has.

What went wrong:

The Islanders’ third goal, the game-winner, probably never should’ve happened. The play should have been blown dead due to icing, but the linesmen blew the call. To compound things, the Bruins, expecting a whistle when the Isles touched the puck, kind of stopped skating. Play continued, the Isles went up the ice, and scored. Game over. Sure, it was a bad call, but players have to play until they hear the whistle, not let up because they expect a call. Unfair, yes, but a mental lapse by the B’s too that ended up costing them the game.

Attaboy: Nabokov. He was huge today, and essentially stole the win for the Isles.

Providence Shuttle: The entire play on the game-winner. The linesmen messed up, the Bruins stopped skating, the play continued…just an ugly play all around.

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About BHN Dan

I'm Dan, a Boston native who runs Bruins Hockey Now, a website dedicated to independent coverage of the Boston Bruins.
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