Rapid Reaction: Rangers 4, Bruins 3 (OT)
January, 23, 2013
By James Murphy | ESPNBoston.com
Despite fighting hard and tying the game twice, the Bruins suffered their first defeat of the season as Marian Gaborik and the suddenly awakened Rangers offense proved to be too much in a 4-3 loss to the Rangers in overtime.
Gaborik had a hat trick and scored the game-winner 27 seconds into the extra session. Taylor Pyatt had the other goal for New York. The Bruins got goals from Brad Marchand, Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton, and a splendid performance from Tuukka Rask (29 saves).
Horton gets first goal -- Horton got his first goal of the season and first since Jan. 19, 2012. Two games and three days after that goal, Horton suffered his second concussion in a calendar year and didn't play again in the 2011-12 season. Horton's first goal in more than a year couldn't have come at a better time for the Bruins as it tied the game at 3-3 15:37 into the final period. Horton took a feed from Gregory Campbell and rifled one past Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist. Horton looks comfortable out there; his timing and speed are there and he seems poised to prove he can be the power forward he was before his concussions.
Rask gives team chance to win -- After finding himself under siege with his teammates flat-footed early in the first period and the Bruins in a quick two-goal hole, goalie Tuukka Rask calmed himself and his team down with some timely saves and helped them climb back into the game. Then, after the Bruins tied it in the third, Rask once again bailed them out as he stuffed Rick Nash alone in front, then Gaborik on the rebound with just less than a minute left in regulation. But the Bruins depended on Rask too much as Andrew Ference fumbled a pass from Chris Kelly at the blue line and Gaborik took it away for a breakaway. Rask stopped Gaborik on his initial shot, but Gaborik buried the rebound home for the win.
Bruce Bennett/Getty ImagesNathan Horton celebrates his first goal in just more than a year.
Hamilton gets first NHL point -- Dougie Hamilton is looking more comfortable every game, and the 19-year-old is using the skill that made him the ninth overall pick in 2011. Hamilton let one rip from the point on the man-advantage and Marchand tipped it past Lundqvist at 1:05 of the second period for the team's first power-play strike of the season. Hamilton could have been forgiven if he'd passed it around since he's only in his third NHL game, but he had the confidence to take the open shot he was given, which is a great sign for the Bruins. Hamilton already has been given veteran minutes (18:55 on Wednesday and 23:27 on Monday) and is showing he can handle them.
Lucic playing a heavy game -- For a guy that many considered out of shape in the abbreviated training camp last week, Lucic has looked pretty fit through three games. Coming into Wednesday's game, Lucic led the NHL in hits with 14, had scored a goal and was looking more like the power forward that has tortured opposing defenses in the past. That continued on Wednesday as Lucic scored the team's second goal and had three shots on goal. The rugged forward is playing a heavy game but he doesn't look heavy at all.
Power play connects -- The power play could have been better, but at least the Bruins finally lit the lamp on the man-advantage with Marchand's goal 1:05 into the second period. Again, Hamilton looked very comfortable at the point and the Bruins were moving the puck around and setting up better. But the execution needs to improve as they only went 1-for-5 and are now 1-for-14 on the season.
Seidenberg misses second straight game; Marchand returns -- Defenseman Dennis Seidenberg missed his second straight game with a lower body injury while Marchand was in the lineup after missing practice Tuesday. Seidenberg's absence meant newcomer Aaron Johnson was back in for another game. He was paired with Adam McQuaid.
Milan Lucic-David Krejci-Nathan Horton
Brad Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-Tyler Seguin
Chris Bourque-Chris Kelly-Rich Peverley
Daniel Paille-Gregory Campbell-Shawn Thornton
Zdeno Chara-Johnny Boychuk
Andrew Ference-Dougie Hamilton
Aaron Johnson-Adam McQuaid