Everything you need to know from the Bruins’ 5-4 win over the Jets in quickie form, with BSJ insight and analysis:
Bruins outlast Winnipeg behind Pastrnak, DeBrusk’s big nights: It wasn't the prettiest of games on Thursday night at TD Garden, with the Bruins falling behind against the Winnipeg Jets on three separate occasions — one of which came as late as 7:50 in the third period. But behind big nights from David Pastrnak (three goals) and Jake DeBrusk (two goals, one assist), the Bruins rallied back to take down the Jets, 5-4, and improve to 26-8-11 on the season.
Even if DeBrusk and Pastrnak appeared to do most of the heavy lifting, Boston once again benefited from a solid effort from all four forward lines and a shorthanded D corps – with nine different players recording at least one point in the victory. Boston countered with under 10 minutes to play, as Pastrnak secured his third hat trick of the year by cleaning up a quality chance off of a DeBrusk drive to the net at 11:13 — knotting the game at 4-4. Just 33 seconds later, DeBrusk put Boston ahead for good, deflecting a Charlie McAvoy shot past Laurent Brossoit to close out the scoring on the night.
Bruins lose Zdeno Chara ahead of puck drop: Entering Thursday’s matchup, the question mark on Boston’s blue line appeared to be Torey Krug, who was tabbed as a game-time decision after battling an illness. But just ahead of puck drop, it was Zdeno Chara that was ultimately ruled out for the contest — with Bruce Cassidy noting that the defenseman’s procedure on his jaw late last month has caused a few issues over the last couple of days.
“We talked this morning,” Cassidy said. “He had a procedure the other day again on the surgery from last year in the playoffs, and there’s a little bit of pain involved there inside. He wanted to play, and I’ve got to tell you, myself and [Don Sweeney] kind of talked him out of it, to be honest with you, because that is going to have to heal properly so he’s not going through it all the time.
“Now, what that timeline is, I don’t know, I think it’s short-term. So, we decided to shut Zee down tonight. Hopefully he is better for the road trip; that kind of calms down, but I guess we’ll get a better read tomorrow. I don’t know if he has a follow-up appointment, but it’s been acting up on him a little bit, and he’s playing through a lot of pain right now.”
David Pastrnak: Nothing to see here — just another hat-trick performance from the top goal scorer in the NHL. With his opening tally at 17:14 in the first period, Pastrnak extended his point streak to 12 straight games. Pastrnak is now the third player in Bruins history to have multiple point streaks of at least 12 games in one season, joining Phil Esposito (15, 13 and 13 games) and Bobby Orr (15 and 12 games), who each did it in 1973-74.
Jake DeBrusk: Thursday was a very encouraging step forward from DeBrusk, who tallied his 12th goal of the season off of a great individual effort in the second period. After getting in front of a puck near the B’s blue line, the second liner took off, beating Brossoit to give Boston a 3-2 lead for a short stretch. Fighting for Grade-A ice paid off again in the third period after DeBrusk tipped home McAvoy’s shot for the eventual game-winner.
Fourth Line: Boston’s fourth line dominated once again on Thursday, setting up Pastrnak’s goal while generating a team-high six high-danger scoring chances in their 6:46 of 5v5 ice time.
Jaroslav Halak: Not the best night from Halak, who has only stopped 39 of the last 46 shots (.847 save percentage) he has faced in his last two games.
Penalty kill: Boston’s PK entered Thursday’s matchup with a 93.3% success rate over its last 9 games, including 25 consecutive kills until their last game at Nashville on Tuesday. But that special-teams unit left a lot to be desired in this matchup, with a pair of long-range shots from the Jets finding their way past Halak on Winnipeg’s man advantage.
PLAY OF THE GAME
What else was it going to be?
Fair to say, the Bruins’ mom's trip was a resounding success.
The Bruins will head out on a three-game road trip, starting with a matchup against the Islanders on Saturday night. Puck drop is set for 7 p.m. over at the Barclays Center.