Coming out of the room from the first intermission down 1-0 and less
than two minutes into the second period, the Boston Bruins had taken a
rarely seen penalty, given up the resultant power play goal and then a
blue line bomb just a minute later and was forced to replace their goal
Things looked pretty bleak for the black and
gold, even by Tinseltown standards. But just like in Hollywood where
presence is everything, the Bruins rode the change in script and rode
their understudy between the pipes and answered the casting call.
But would it be enough for the storybook ending, or had the Bruins dug themselves a hole too deep to escape from?
3-0 to the Los Angeles Kings and floundering, Bruins' coach Claude
Julien lifted starting netminder Tuukka Rask in favor of reserve goalie
Chad Johnson in an attempt to stir the pot, but it wasn't until
defenseman Dougie Hamilton picked off a pass in the neutral zone and fed
Carl Soderberg who found a streaking Matt Fraser for a drought-breaking
one timer that awakened the bear from hibernation.
off of a very public flogging at the hands of the Anaheim Ducks, the
Boston Bruins on Thursday night looked initially like they were still
feeling the sting of the whip. The Kings owned the neutral zone and got
full value from their time in the attacking zone, getting to the pucks
first, their big bodies winning battles along the boards...
the Fraser goal midway through the second period stopped the bleeding
and leveled the playing field, suddenly the Bruins were skating faster,
challenging at the blue line and getting to the boards quickly - and
when Kings' brute left wing Kyle Clifford decided to take a run at David
Krejci with four minutes left in the frame, Adam McQuaid took Clifford
Both fighters took as good as they got, but
the bout seemed to spark the Bruins even more - but the Kings never lost
their rhythm, didn't panic and stayed fundamentally sound, weathering
the Bruins' push with spectacular work in net by Jonathan Quick as Los
Angeles took a decisive 4-2 victory over Boston on Thursday night at the
Quick faced just 22 shots on goal as
the stifling Kings' defense dominated the middle of the ice for much of
the contest, and Los Angeles got goals from Jeff Carter, Justin
Williams, defenseman Alec Martinez and captain Dustin Brown to raise
their record to 27-13-5.
The Bruins managed just the
Fraser goal and a late Justin Florek redirection but got solid crease
coverage by Johnson, who stopped 16 of 17 after replacing the
ineffective Rask who gave up three of the goals on 15 shots. The loss
drops the Bruins to 28-14-2.
The Kings took the
early lead in the opening frame when Johnny Boychuck whiffed on a
clearing pass, Anze Kopitar swooped in and tapped the puck to the red
line where he found Jeff Carter in the low slot - taking two shots at
Rask from point blank, his first shot stoned by Rask but the rebound
jumped right back to Carter and the put back found twine - and the Kings
had a 1-0 lead.
The bottom fell out at the start of the
second period, Boston starting the frame a man down with Hamilton in the
box for a tripping penalty carrying over from the opening frame, but
when coming out of the penalty box played a stray puck before fully
removed, Hamilton called for the rare interference penalty coming out of
...Justin Williams scoring just seconds into
the resultant power play, gathering in a puck in the neutral zone and
beating the defense to the slot - unleashing a rocket that beat Rask
easily for a two goal lead, then Defenseman Alec Martinez fired a bomb
from the high point just one minute later and suddenly the Bruins were
down three and Rask was done for the evening.
the Bruins take their second bad loss in a row on their swing through
California, fortunate that the teams chasing them in the Atlantic
Division, the Tampa Bay Lightning and the hated Montreal Canadiens
couldn't make up any ground, both remaining just two point back of
The Bruins now head north to San Jose, where the Sharks lurk to take their bite out of the Bruins on Saturday night.