There weren't many positives for the Boston Bruins to take from their 3-2 overtime loss to the St. Louis Blues in Game 2 of the 2019 Stanley Cup Final, but Joakim Nordstrom's performance definitely was an encouraging sign for the B's.
"Missed opportunity", Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said.
Brad Marchand of the Boston Bruins battles for the puck with Carl Gunnarsson of the St. Louis Blues during the third period in Game 2 of the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Final at TD Garden on May 29, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. Grzelcyk is as good as any of the Bruins defensemen at completing two critical tasks: challenging attackers at the blue line to deny controlled entries, and scurrying back to retrieve pucks that breach the primary fortification of defense. That's when Sundqvist skated in for a check.
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On the flip side, the Blues got pummeled when their top defenseman Alex Pietrangelo was on the ice at five-on-five. He was helped off the ice and sent to a hospital for evaluation. Defensively, the Boston Bruins are allowing 1.9 goals per game and are killing 86.8 percent of their opponents power plays.
Sundqvist received two minutes for boarding. They have had seven-game streaks three times, most recently in 1999. The home-town Bruins started off slow, but perhaps the "welcome to the Stanley Cup" moment happened when Torey Krug delivered a thunderous hit on Robert Thomas helping the Bruins to the win.
"I think we can be even better, and we have to be", Perron said. "It's from behind, elevated, into his head, into the glass".
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After Connor Clifton was assessed a double minor penalty for high-sticking near the end of the second period, Nordstrom and the Bruins went to work on a four-minute long penalty kill. That's in somebody else's hands. That's something I think if I'm making that hit, I'm probably watching from the bleachers for a few. During the playoffs, St Louis ranks 4th in scoring, putting up 2.95 gpg, 6th in goals allowed at 2.60 gpg, 10th in power play conversions at 18.8%, and 11th in penalty kill at 78.3%.
"This time of year, there's always injuries and we've been pretty healthy for the most part", Blues forward Jaden Schwartz said. "We weren't too happy with the way the game was going". The players said it, the coach said it, the pundits said it.
More than anything else, Cassidy was upset about losing a defenseman who has been an important part of Boston's postseason run. "We lost some of that element". He's good at the big escape more and the big clean pass to get our forwards moving.
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