The Boston Bruins and New Jersey Devils each started their seasons in a very competitive game. The Bruins ultimately won the game in a shootout by the score of 3-2. For the Bruins, there are lots of positives key takeaways. Clancy Golden takes a look at the Bruins key takeaways from the season’s first game.
Positive Boston Bruins Key Takeaways
The Bruins first game answered lots of questions that the fans had. People were wondering how the Bruins special teams would respond to losing Torey Krug and Zdeno Chara. Fans also wondered how Tuukka Rask would play after his abrupt and surprising departure from the NHL’s bubble. Finally, Brad Marchand and Nick Ritchie had strong first games and have responded well to the disappointment from last season. With these positive Bruins key takeaways from the first game, Bruins fans worries should be put to rest.
Strong First Game
The Bruins first game brought some promising beginnings from Brad Marchand and Nick Ritchie. They were positive Bruins key takeaways from the game. For Marchand, this was his first game since his offseason sports hernia surgery. During his return, Marchand played 22:01. He was very productive as he scored the first Bruins goal of the season. Marchand also added an assist on the Nick Ritchie goal.
The goal by Nick Ritchie put the Bruins up by one goal with about six minutes remaining in the game. Unfortunately, the Bruins could not hold onto the one-goal lead and the Devils forced overtime. There wasn’t any overtime heroics from either team but in the shootout, Brad Marchand captured the game for the Bruins. He was the third shooter for the Bruins and was the only player to score in shoot out.
As previously mentioned, Nick Ritchie was another positive takeaway from the first Bruins game. Last season, Bruins fans were frustrated at Ritchie for his antics and lack of scoring ability he displayed during the playoffs. Fans wanted Ritchie to be cut and never wanted to see him in a Bruins uniform again.
In his first game of the 2021 season, Ritchie scored a goal to give the Bruins a lead. His goal was set up by Brad Marchand as Ritchie received a cross-ice pass at the top of the crease. He proceeded to tip the puck right into the net for the 2-1 lead. These two players are positive key takeaways from the first game and will hopefully help the Bruins return to the playoffs again.
Elite Special Teams
The second Bruins key takeaway from the first game is that their special teams are just fine after their offseason losses. Boston Bruins fans were very nervous about the Bruins special teams after the losses of shutdown defenseman Zdeno Chara and Torey Krug. Both players were key in making the Bruins have one of the better special teams in the league during the 2019-20 season.
Torey Krug also was the quarterback of the Bruins powerplay over the past few seasons. With his departure, fans were nervous if the power play would be a disaster. The Bruins proved it would not be as they had five opportunities and scored on two of them. Both Bruins goals were scored on the power play and they were absolutely beautiful goals. The Bruins powerplay showed promise during their first game and they seem like they will be just fine without Krug.
The penalty kill also seems just fine after losing Zdeno Chara. The Bruins took five penalties during the game. All five Devils power players were killed off and the Bruins actually created some offensive chances while they were supposed to be defending from offensive chances. After seeing this performance the Bruins special teams seems like they will be just fine.
Tuukka Rask Proves He Is Still an Elite Goalie
The third and final Bruins key takeaway is that Tuukka Rask is proving he is still a very good goalie. There was much concern for the Bruins goalie after his departure from the NHL’s bubble. During his first game back, Rask faced 22 shots and stopped 20 of them. The real reason that Bruins fans should realize Rask is still elite is because of his many clutch saves in overtime and the ridiculous ways the Devils scored their goals.
The two goals allowed were absolutely crazy. Miles Wood scored the first goal for the Devils and it was an absolute snipe. He entered the offensive zone on a breakaway and put the puck under the crossbar as he crashed into the goal. There was no way Rask or any other goalie could have stopped it.
The second goal scored by the Devils pinballed around off two Bruins players and somehow ended up in the back of the Bruins net. It was another goal that Rask didn’t really have a chance on. In overtime, Rask came up clutch as he made multiple fantastic saves in overtime to keep the Bruins in the game and force a shootout. In the shootout, he stopped all the shots he faced and helped clinch the Bruins first win.
After their first victory of the season Bruins, fans should be very excited. The three Bruins key takeaways from their first game prove the Bruins will have a successful season. Nick Ritchie, Brad Marchand, and Tuukka Rask will help lead a successful Bruins special teams and a fantastic season.
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