Tonight’s game was the final game between the Boston Bruins and Tampa Bay Lightning for the season. Boston had defeated the Bolts in their previous three meetings, the last of which was the game where Steven Stamkos suffered his broken leg. It was a heated contest between the two teams for much of the game, but the Bruins eventually came out on top in a seven-round shootout to earn the season sweep of the Bolts.
Down by two goals in the second period, the Bruins fought back to tie the game with two of the prettiest goals of the year. The first goal, scored by Daniel Paille was an example of sticking with the puck at all costs. Paille received the puck from linemate Gregory Campbell on a bounce pass off the boards, collided with a Bolt and still proceeded to drive hard to the net. It’s the type of play that Boston fans have come to expect from Paille. Two minutes later, Carl Soderberg tied the game on a breakaway goal that can only be described as silky smooth.
A controversial no-goal call in the third period threatened to derail the momentum that the Bruins had built. Although Patrice Bergeron managed to get the puck in the net before the whistle blew, the referee ruled that it was a no-goal based on intent to blow the whistle. It’s a rule that many would like to see changed but for now is a part of the game. Fortunately, Johnny Boychuk was able to send in a bomb from the blue line that was undisputedly a good goal to tie the game and eventually force overtime.
One of the most important parts of this game for the Bruins was that they were able to come back from a two-goal deficit to win. It was a feat that they have failed to do all season long. Despite a sluggish start, the Bruins showed how hungry they are to win and found ways to be successful. Tuukka Rask showed up huge for the B’s in the shootout, giving teammate Reilly Smith a chance to eventually score the game-winner.