Bruins

BSJ Game Report: Penguins 4, Bruins 2 — B’s point streak snapped at 19 games in sloppy loss to Pittsburgh

(Photo by Jeanine Leech/Icon Sportswire)

Everything you need to know from the Bruins’ 4-2 loss against the Penguins in quickie form, with BSJ insight and analysis…

BOX SCORE

HEADLINES:

The point streak comes to an end: For the first time since Jan. 19, the Bruins have dropped a game in regulation. The B’s made things interesting — making it a one-goal game with 1:01 left in regulation while firing 41 total shots on goal against Matt Murray — but it wasn’t enough to extend Boston’s point streak to 20 games.

Even with a high volume of shots, the writing was on the wall for the Bruins, who are starting to feel the lack of scoring punch in the top six with David Pastrnak, Jake DeBrusk and Marcus Johansson all sidelined due to injuries. Even with Boston’s recent luck when it comes to third-period rallies, the club wasn’t going to have much success on a night in which they were knocked for 10 giveaways and had a number of other costly turnovers.

Even without their best effort, the Bruins were still able to pull a rabbit out of the hat and capture two points in games against teams like Florida and Ottawa. Against a skilled Pittsburgh team fighting for playoff positioning? You’re not going to be so lucky.

B’s lose to Grzelcyk to injury: While he’s largely skated on Boston’s third D pairing this season, Matt Grzelcyk has been an invaluable piece on Boston’s blue line this season, especially when it comes to generating breakouts and preventing zone entries down the other end of the ice.

But it looks like the Charlestown native is going to be out of commission for at least a game or two, as Grzelcyk exited Sunday’s contest early in the second period after taking a hit from Patric Hornqvist.

Hornqvist’s check appeared to crunch Grzelcyk’s exposed right arm into the boards, with the defenseman leaving the game in plenty of pain. To the surprise of pretty much no one, Grzelcyk did not return for the rest of the game, although Bruce Cassidy did note postgame that X-rays were negative on his arm.

While the team will have a better understanding of the severity of Grzelcyk's injury on Monday, you have to think that the team dodged a bit of a bullet — because that initial hit really did not look good. 

TWO UP:

Danton Heinen: Another good showing from Heinen, as he set up David Krejci with a slick, no-look feed on the power play at 4:32 of the second period. Make that four assists in the last three straight games for the winger, who also took a stick to the face on the sequence. Together, the Marchand-Bergeron-Heinen line combined for 15 shots on goal.

Charlie Coyle: Coyle finally got on the scoresheet with the Bruins, securing the primary assist on John Moore’s goal at 18:59 in the third period. In 14:16 of ice time, Coyle landed three shots on goal, won 56 percent of his draws at the faceoff dot and was part of a third line that posted a plus-2 shot differential and generated five scoring chances over 7:13 of 5v5 TOI together.

THREE DOWN:

David Krejci: Even if he tallied a goal for the fourth straight game, Krejci has to get knocked for a couple of costly turnovers — as he failed to corral the puck on a sequence that led to Nick Bjugstad’s opening tally at 1:33 in the first, while also coughing up the puck on a power-play stint that ended with Jared McCann burying a shorthanded goal.

Torey Krug: A poor night in the defensive zone for Krug, who committed a number of turnovers and was tagged with a minus-3 rating on the night. In 14:34 of 5v5 play, Krug was out for just five shots in favor of Boston and 14 in favor of Pittsburgh. Not ideal.

Lee Stempniak: The Stempniak era has continued to be largely underwhelming. All the credit to the veteran when it comes to hanging around with the club and earning a contract, but he’s yet to land a shot on goal in two games — while only logging 7:52 of ice time. A turnover off the stick of Stempnik allowed Bjugstad to open the scoring just 1:33 into regulation.

PLAY OF THE GAME:

PARTING THOUGHT:

LOOKING AHEAD:

The Bruins will resume play on Tuesday when they take on the Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena. Puck drop is set for 7 p.m. Despite establishing themselves as the big buyers at the trade deadline by acquiring players like Matt Duchene, Ryan Dzingel and Adam McQuaid, the Blue Jackets are clinging on to the final Wild-Card spot in the East.