|(Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images)|
But they woke up between periods, and the third was a completely different story, as they found their grove and peppered the Flames' net for the entire frame.
David Krejci and Reilly Smith scored twice in the period, just 1:38 apart, to catapult the Bruins past the Flames in Jarome Iginla's return to Calgary.
Although Iginla did not register a point on the night in his return, the B's did bag the W, and I'm sure he's just fine with the result.
The Bruins started off slow...real slow. Their first and second periods did not see much for sustained action. They only managed five and four shots, respectively, in the first two frames. They just did not have their legs, and whatever the reason was, either the ridiculous amounts of injuries, playing in a different time zone, or the flu going around the team, it seemed like it was a going to be a night where the Bruins just didn't have the energy.
The Flames weren't much better, but they did put plenty of pucks on Tuukka Rask in the first two periods. Jiri Hudler put the Flames in front at 5:17 of the second, his 9th of the year. After Torey Krug pinched way up in the neutral zone to try and stop the play, the Flames worked it to the open ice, where Hudler got around Dennis Seidenberg and got a fluttering shot past the glove of Rask.
The B's were a totally different team in the third, and coach Claude Julien must have given quite the intermission pep-talk. The Bruins came out with more speed and firepower than the first two periods combined, and then some.
The B's registered 15 shots on goal, and more than a handful of them were quality scoring chances, one from Iginla and another with Zdeno Chara on the doorstep of the crease in the same sequence.
But it was David Krejci with his 6th of the year who finally got the breakthrough the B's were gunning for. On their second powerplay of the period due to a Joe Colborne (yes, that Joe Colborne) delay of game at 12:37, Krejci got the tip-deflection off a Torey Krug shot from the blueline. With Krug again running the show on the point, he played catch with Chara, who was parked in the circle. Krejci's deflection went under Reto Berra's pads and tied the game at one.
Just 1:38 later, Reilly Smith put the B's in front with his 7th of the season. The trio of Smith, Ryan Spooner and Carl Soderberg made the play happen, working the puck out of their zone and through the neutral zone. Smith then took over with a wicked burst of speed into the zone and cutting back across the front of the net and scoring on Berra's short side, right under the glove.
Rask and the B's shut the door for the last four minutes, sealing the win and giving Iginla a victory in his return to the arena where he played for 15 seasons.
You could feel the goals coming in the third, as the B's were outworking the Flames on every shift. The Flames were on their heels the whole period, trying to protect their 1 goal lead.
Its the 21st win of the season, keeping the B's in first place in the Atlantic with 44 points.
The B's will take on old friend Andrew Ferrence and the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday night.