BOSTON, MA – The highlight for the Bruins in their 4-3 loss to Montreal on Sunday night, was no doubt the play of the Patrice Bergeron-Tyler Seguin-Brad Marchand line that combined for eight points (two goals, six assists) and 12 shots on goal. The trio was racing up and down the ice from the start, driving hard to the net, creating plays, and, most importantly, scoring goals.
Tyler Seguin and Patrice Bergeron both scored, while Brad Marchand assisted on both goals. The Little Ball of Hate added a third helper on Dougie Hamilton’s second career goal mid-way through the second period. It was Marchand’s first career three assist game.
Head Coach Claude Julien called the line his team’s best on Sunday, and also said that he would have liked to see his other three lines perform with the intensity that that line did. If that happened, Julien said, his team would have been in much better shape.
“By far, they were our best line tonight,” said Julien, following the loss that ended the Black & Gold’s six-game winning streak. “And that’s the unfortunate thing; we didn’t have enough of those other lines going for us. You can’t win big games like that, relying on just that one line.
“We need more out of the other lines and tonight wasn’t a night where we got that. It’s a credit to them. I think Patrice had a great night, obviously Marshy with three assists, and Tyler, I thought was skating well and competing well.
“That was a good line for us. Another line or two like that, with that same work ethic, we would’ve been fine.”
Just 40 seconds after the Canadiens had made it 1-0, the Bergeron line got to work. No. 37 lost a rare faceoff, but Marchand knocked Montreal’s Josh Gorges off the puck in the corner, picked it up, and skated towards the back of the net.
Marchand sneaked a pass to Bergeron trailing alongside him. The B’s assistant captain made a touch pass to Seguin, who was skating to the net with his stick on the ice. Seguin then one-timed it into the net to tie the score at 1. It was No. 19’s second goal in as many games.
The line’s second goal came 4:06 into the middle period, with the Habs up, 2-1. Seguin picked up the puck in the neutral zone and broke in on Canadiens’ goalie Peter Budaj, on a two-on-one with Bergeron. Seguin backhanded a pass toward the net, where Bergeron was waiting by the far post.
The B's assistant captain whacked away at the puck, and it eventually trickled into the net to tie the game at 2.
The Bruins went ahead on Hamilton’s goal, just over five minutes later.
Marchand broke into the zone up the left wing to start the play. He then carried the puck all the way across the ice, spun, and fired a shot from the right face-off dot that was deflected to a wide-open Hamilton, who was parked outside the left post.
Hamilton put home the fluttering puck to put the Bruins on top, 3-2. Bergeron also assisted on the goal, giving him 3-8–11 totals over the last seven games.
“I think in the second [period] we found ways to get some more offense – we also took the lead,” said Bergeron, who, with a goal and two assists, extended his point streak to four games. “I like what we did in the second, but in the third they came back hard at us, and we couldn’t find a way to get that fourth goal.”
Marchand, who has 4-5–9 totals over his last seven games, talked about his line’s impressive performance following the loss. The winger says the play of his line Sunday was just a continuation of the success the trio has had all season long.
“We’ve been clicking pretty well this year, and I think tonight was just another example of that. We had a lot of really good opportunities,” said Marchand.
“I’m not getting tired of playing with Bergy and Segs. We’re having a lot of fun out there, and we’re clicking pretty well. But, hopefully, it can continue because it can stop at any time.”
Seguin also had a golden opportunity with only seconds remaining in regulation, that would have tied the game at 4, but Budaj turned it away.
“We were down one goal,” said Seguin, who registered five shots. “So, [I was] just trying to get it back and the goalie made a great save on me at the end there. I didn’t get it as high as I wanted to, but you move on.”