The Boston Bruins bounced back on Tuesday night after a couple of losses to the Buffalo Sabres and Pittsburgh Penguins. The Bruins showed us the classic winning mentality that fans are used to seeing this late in the season, with the B’s recently going on a six-game win streak. The Bruins left a lot to be analyzed after their 3-1 win over the Penguins – let’s delve into three takeaways from last night’s triumph over Pittsburgh.
Injuries Haven’t Affected Tuukka Rask’s Abilities in the Crease
Tuukka Rask left the Boston Bruins on March 7 after sustaining a back injury and again on March 25 after injuring his back again. Many Bruins’ fans felt demoralized knowing their starting goalie was out with a nagging back injury. The Bruins would have to look to the backups for help, and they surprisingly delivered. However, no goalie currently in the organization can compare to the experienced brick wall which is Tuukka Rask.
Since his return on April 15, the Finnish netminder has shown he is aging like fine wine and not letting the injuries hold him back. Rask has four wins in his last five starts from coming back, with a shutout amongst those wins. On Tuesday, he continued to prove that he is the Bruins’ starter and won’t let injuries take away his ability to keep his spot as the Bruins’ starting goalie.
Taylor Hall Has Found His Home
Taylor Hall hasn’t had a place to call home for over a year. After a short stint with the Arizona Coyotes, and most recently a stint with the Buffalo Sabres, Hall seems to finally found some peace and seems to be settling down nicely. The former 2010 first-round pick has an impressive four goals and seven points in nine games with the Bruins. That is quite impressive, considering he has doubled his goal total in 28 fewer games from when he was on the Sabres.
Hall is finally beginning to prosper and show the talent we were once used to seeing during his time with the New Jersey Devils. The Bruins have given him a role that suits his playing style more all while providing him with talented players available to support him. He absolutely sniped a goal last night that left Penguins’ goalie Tristan Jarry startled between the pipes. The sniper seems to be back and better than ever, let’s hope he can keep it up in a possible postseason appearance by the Bruins.
Hitting Comes First
The most admirable thing about the Boston Bruins, in this modern-day and age of hockey where grit has less and less to do with the game each year, is their willingness to get in the dirty areas. The Bruins don’t shy away from completing their checks and hitting when they get the opportunity. The B’s proved this by doubling the Pittsburgh Penguins hits in the match, with a whopping 50 hits in the match.
Four players registered five or more hits, with a total of 22 hits coming from four players. However, it was a team effort in the hit department, with every single player apart from Matt Grzelcyk registering at least one hit. Hits are a crucial part of the game that still hold value against less gritty teams such as the Penguins since it allows for more buck battles to be won and puck possession to be held longer. More puck possession equals more scoring opportunities and more time to score. It seems last night proved the Bruising Bruins hold true to their name.
The Bruins seem to be playing well these last 10 games considering the injuries they’ve dealt with. The Bruins will look to maintain a winning mindset going into their last eight games of the condensed season. With Tuukka Rask back, Hall finding his rhythm, and the team playing harder than ever, there is no reason why they can’t hunker down and win the majority of their last eight games. Do you think the Bruins will maintain their playoff spot?
I’m Lou from Qc,Canada. I am a writer for the Boston Bruins.