BRUINS 20-5-3 (43 pts) AT MAPLE LEAFS 16-12-3 (35 pts)
9:51 p.m. - Postgame Snapshots: FINAL TOR 3, BOS 2
Toronto Tops B's: Despite a late third period surge by the Bruins, the Maple Leafs were able to fend off the B's and snapped the Black & Gold's eight game winning streak against Toronto to give the B's a 3-1 record on their four-game road trip. The Bruins will travel back to Boston finish their home-at-home series with the Leafs on Monday back at TD Garden.
Ference Scores: Not long after the B's pulled Tuukka Rask for an extra attacher, Andrew Ference was able to bring the B's within one, scoring his second goal of the year with just 1:16 remaining in the third period. Ference let a slapshot go from the just in front of the middle of the blueline, which was redirected off Mark Fraser to find its way to the back of the net to spark the B's. Earning assists on the play were David Krejci (18) and Rich Peverley (six). The goal sparked the Bruins and they were able to sustain the pressure into the final second of the game, but could not find the equalizer they needed to bring the game into overtime.
B's on the PP: At 7:04 into the third the Bruins went on the power play for the first in the game game after Carl Gunnarsson tripped David Krejci deep in the Leafs zone. The Bruins were unable to capitalize on the man advantage and failed to register any shots on goal on their first and only power play chance of the night.
Rask Replaces Khudobin: Following the third Toronto goal, Head Coach Claude Julien opted to substitute Tuukka Rask for Anton Khudobin after the B's starting goaltender allowed three goals on 11 shots.
Seides Scores: 56 seconds after Toronto's third goal, Seidenberg answered with a goal of his own to put Bruins on the board cutting the lead to 3-1. That goal marks Seidenberg's second goal of the season and second in his last two games. Bergeron was key on the play providing a net front presence, screening Reimer to give the puck a chance to get to the back of the net.
McLaren Scores: Maple Leafs defenseman Frazer McLaren put the Leafs up 3-0 on a scrappy goal on the doorstep of the Bruins crease at 1:34 into the third period. McLaren hacked away at a loose puck that was within close proximity to Khudobin, which eventually slipped its way past the B's netminder. Earning assists on the play were Colton Orr (three) and Jay McClement (seven).
B's Postgame Coverage: Stay tuned for our postgame coverage and follow us on Twitter @NHLBruins for quotes from the B's locker room and Head Coach Claude Julien.
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Next Game: The Bruins will finish up the back end of the home-at-home series against Toronto on Monday, March 25 at TD Garden. Puck drop is scheduled 7:00 p.m. ET
8:40 p.m. - 2nd Intermission Snapshots: TOR 2, BOS 0
Bartkowski to the Box: At 17:05 into the second period, Matt Bartkowski was called for interference to put the Bruins on the PK for the second time tonight. The Bruins were able to win battles showing great effort to kill off the penalty to limit any further damage and make it 2-for-2.
B's Outshooting Leafs: Despite outshooting the Leafs 20 to 9, the Bruins still find themselves down 2-0 going into third period. Leading the B's in shots tonight are David Krejci (4), Shawn Thornton (3) and Nathan Horton (3). The line of Lucic-Krejci-Horton started to generate chances for the B's past the midpoint of the second and had sustained pressure for over a minute, but couldn't find the back of the net. Heading into tonight, the Bruins were looking for a grittier effort and greater net drive - Reimer has been able to see most of the B's shots or they've been blocked in front (Leafs with 14 blocked shots), so look for the Black & Gold to dig deep here in the third.
Grabovski Scores: At 2:52 into the second period, Mikhail Grabvoski fired a wrist shot by Anton Khudobin to put the Leafs 2-0. Grabovski skated through the neutral zone into the B's end and put the brakes on right on top of the right faceoff dot, contested by David Krejci, who nearly stole the puck and canceled out the Leafs' forward. Grabovski, hesitated but then sent a shot on net to beat Khudobin in the far corner, stick-side. That goal was Grabovski's eighth of the year with the assists coming from Ryan Hamilton (1) and Matt Frattin (5).
Not Over, Until It's Over: The Bruins have had four games this season in which the Bruins have allowed the first two goals of the game and have taken outs out of all four games at 2-0-2.
7:58 p.m. - 1st Intermission Snapshots: TOR 1, BOS 0
Merlot's Chances: Paille served as catalyst for one of the better chances of the first period for the B's, after stealing the puck from Toronto's Cody Franson in the Maple Leaf zone. Paille took the stolen puck and quickly flipped it to Thornton, who let one fly on net from the right faceoff circle, yielding a rebound to the opposite side. Paille, trailing the play he started, found the rebound and was nearly able to convert with Reimer still trying to get back into position following Thornton's shot and Campbell searched for the loose puck as well. Great pressure by the Merlot line on that chance. They've really been carrying the energy for the B's to start, and Paille, as always, has his wheels on tonight.
B's to the PK: Aaron Johnson was called for high-sticking at 9:51 into the first period to put the Bruins on the penalty kill for the first time tonight. The Bruins were able to kill off the penalty unscathed, only allowing one shot on net, which Khudobin was able to turn aside with relative ease. The Bruins have now killed the last 29 of their past 30 penalties.
Enforcers Drop 'Em: Right after Kadri's first-period goal to put the Leafs up 1-0 (description below), B's enforcer Shawn Thornton and Toronto's Colton Orr dropped the mitts right off the faceoff and squared off in a lengthy bout that saw a few dozen punches exchanged between the two bruisers between the two blue lines. The two finished the bout on their feet before the referees got involved and split the two up to send them to their respective penalty boxes. 22 landed a great uppercut to start and a nice right during the bout, but Orr earned the takedown. The pair is very familiar with one another fighting three times previously, including once in the AHL in 2004. The last time Thornton and Orr fought came on December 5, 2009.
Kadri Strikes First: Nazem Kadri was the first to strike in tonight's matchup after receiving a slick tape-to-tape pass from Clarke MacAurthor through the seam, as Toronto had good speed through the neutral zone. Kadri was able to settle the puck for a split second then fire it past Khudobin to put the Leafs up 1-0. The Leafs forward now has nine points in his last four games after scoring his 14th goal of the season at 4:58 into the first period. MacAurthur and Liles are credited with assists on the play for their 10th and 6th of the season respectively.
6:33 p.m. - Pregame Snapshots: BOS at TOR
Matchup: The Bruins will finish up their four-game road trip tonight against the Maple Leafs and will look to even up their record on this road stretch that has them currently at 1-2. The B's are 2-0 this season against Toronto this year and have won their last eight contests against the Leafs with their last loss coming on on March 31, 2011 in a shootout.
Starting Goaltenders: Khudobin (6-2-0, 2.14 GAA, .925 Save %) vs. Reimer (10-4-3, 2.73 GAA, .916 Save %). Khudobin is 1-0-0 with a 2.00 GAA and .926 Save % in one career game against Toronto. Reimer is 3-4-0 with a 3.03 GAA and .912 Save % in seven career games against Boston.
Bruins vs Leafs Lifetime: The Bruins and Leafs will meet for the 648th time tonight with the B’s holding a 286-255-98-8 record. Boston's current eight-game win streak against the Leafs is their longest win streak against Toronto in the lifetime history between the two teams. It is also Boston's second longest streak versus any team (Edmonton, 10-0-0)
Point-Per-Game Success: Bruins forward Tyler Seguin has average more than a point-per-game when playing Toronto, having registered 10-6=16 totals during the span of 14 games (1.14 per game).
Bartkowski In: With Johnny Boychuk listed as day-to-day, B's recent call-up Matt Bartkowski is expected to fill in his absence. In 56 games for the Providence Bruins this year, Bartkowski has registered three goals and 21 assists for 24 points with 56 penalty minutes. The blueliner’s 21 assists are ranked second among defensemen and fifth overall on the P-Bruins. Read the full release here.
Line Changes: Recent callup Ryan Spooner and Rich Peverley will be in the lineup tonight with Jordan Caron listed as a healthy scatch.
Home-and-Home Series: The Bruins will partake in their first and only home-and-home series of the year against the Maple Leafs playing them tonight in Toronto and again two days later on March 25 at TD Garden.
Boston: PP: 13-for-84 (15.5%, 22nd NHL), PK: 95-for-103 (92.2%, 1st NHL).
Toronto: PP: 20-for-111 (18.0%, 18th NHL), PK: 86-for-101 (85.1%, 6th NHL).