The B-Side: stats and facts from Boston's thrilling 1-0 Game 4 win
The Bruins and Habs battled and fought through 62 minutes of scoreless hockey, all before Matt Fraser pounced on a loose puck just beyond the crease in overtime to send the Bruins back to Boston as winners.
Squeaking through: Fraser bags the OT-winner (via ESPN.com)
After struggling in Game 3, and for extended parts of the series, Tuukka Rask righted the ship and turned in his best performance vs the Habs thus far. He stopped all 33 shots he faced to pick up his second shutout of the 2014 postseason and his fifth in his career.
Zdeno Chara (team-high 24:24) and Dougie Hamilton (23:28) were the only two Bruin skaters over 20 minutes of TOI for the second consecutive game.
A few facts in a row on Matt Fraser...Fraser joined Reilly Smith, Jordan Caron, Justin Florek and DougHamilton by scoring his first-career postseason goal in these playoffs.
Fraser was also awarded the "Old Time Hockey" player of the game jacket.
Fraser became the first player in history to score overtime goals in both the AHL and the NHL in the same playoff season.
Fraser became the 2nd player in the 2014 postseason (and just the sixth in the last 75 years) to score his first-career playoff goal in a 1-0 overtime game, joining Minnesota's Mikael Granlund.
Fraser became the sixth Bruin to score his first-career postseason goal in overtime.
Of every skater that hit the ice in Game 4, Fraser had the highest recorded corsi at 74.1% (20 corsi for, 7 against). The rest of the third line followed suit, with Loui Eriksson (73.1%) and Carl Soderberg (70.4%) finished second and fourth in the ranks. The eyeball test backs up the stats; the third line was everywhere last night and was Boston's best set of players going.
Since the 2010-11 season, the Bruins have played four Game 4's on a Thursday that have gone to overtime. Two have been played this postseason:
4/21/11 @ Montreal: 5-4 win
5/16/13 @ NYR: 4-3 loss
4/24/14 @ Detroit: 3-2 win
5/8/14 @ Montreal: 1-0 win
Patrice Bergeron led the charge with five shots-on-goal. Bergeron logged 16:33 TOI, blocked two shots while having a bad night at the face-off circle for his standards: 11/22 for 50%.
Speaking of bad nights, David Krejci continued his struggles in the series, recording the worst corsi (46.5%) of all Bruins players not including the Merlot line, Torey Krug and Kevan Miller. Krejci could not gain entry to the offensive zone on multiple occasions, with the worst offense coming late in the second period, when he skated into a maze of bodies and lost the puck, which led to an outlet pass for Brian Gionta on a breakaway.
Montreal's third defensive paring of Douglas Murray and Mike Weaver got rampaged by the Soderberg, Eriksson, Fraser line. Habs coach Michel Therrien chose Murray and Weaver as the pair to go against Boston's third line, and the result was the worst corsi percentage of any two players in the game. Both players finished at a 16.7% (4 corsi for, 20 against). Like I said before, it's not hard to dispute that stat, as you could see through the game how badly the third line was dominating play. Murray and Weaver were the two hapless souls chosen to hang on for dear life through the action.
After much controversy was made about how badly the zebras were going to call penalties on the Bruins and award the Habs with a handful of unjustified power-plays, we saw the exact opposite happen in the two games played at the Bell Centre. A total of five penalties were called, with three going against Montreal and two against Boston.
After sitting out for Games 2 and 3 in favor of Andrej Meszaros, Matt Bartkowski found his way back into the lineup for Game 4. And Bart may just find himself back on the 9th floor come tomorrow night. Bartkowski led the Bruins with three giveaways, with two of them directly leading to Montreal scoring chances. We already know Bartkowski was on a short leash from coach Claude Julien, and his play in Game 4 did not do him any favors in hoping to crack the lineup for Game 5.
We've asked both Milan Lucic and Jarome Iginla to get more physical and establish a presence in the Habs' zone that hasn't been there through the series. We got half of that in Game 4. Iginla landed six hits, with his most crushing being planted on Max Pacioretty into the boards halfway through the first, while Lucic dealt out five of his own. With the luxury of last change on home-ice, Michel Therrien has matched Boston's top-line with the Gionta, Borque, Eller line in both games at the Bell Centre. All three Bruin skaters (Lucic - 48.6%) (Iginla - 47.5%) (Krejci - 46.5%) were the only to finish below 50% when not including the Merlot line, Krug or Miller.