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Same Old Song and Dance: Bruins 4, Blackhawks 3

The Blackhawks lost to the Bruins in 17 seconds, which has no significance whatsoever to these two teams

Chicago Blackhawks v Boston Bruins
Alec Regula of the Chicago Blackhawks defends against Nick Foligno of the Boston Bruins in NHL action
Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

The Chicago Blackhawks went into TD Garden for the first time since 2019 on Thursday and lost 4-3 to the Boston Bruins thanks to David Pastrnak scoring with just 17 seconds left after a tied game.

The Bruins started the scoring as Charlie Coyle scored on a rebound Kevin Lankinen allowed off of a Connor Clifton chance. Honestly, with that amount of C’s on that play, it’s no wonder Chicago went down 1-0.

However, the Blackhawks quickly got back in the game, as Alex DeBrincat scored off a Patrick Kane pass into a yawning net about 2:30 later:

After Chicago dominated the beginning of the second period, which the Bruins’ broadcast made very clear, the Blackhawks scored the first goal of the second period to break the tie, as Brandon Hagel collected the puck, went around the net and snuck the puck below Jeremy Swayman:

The Bruins would tie the game themselves later in the middle frame on the man advantage, however, as Jack Ahcan made an individual play, stick handling around Reilly Stillman before making the game 2-2. It’s a wonder that that play was just Ahcan’s first NHL goal.

The Bruins scored a second power-play goal less than four minutes later as Pastrnak shot the puck from the faceoff dot past Lankinen fresh off a pass from Charlie McAvoy to make it a 3-2 game.

The Blackhawks would make it a tie game on their own power-play opportunity to start the third period, as Hagel collected a rebound off of Swayman and put it in the net:

With less than a minute left, the Blackhawks had a faceoff in their own zone, and the Bruins were able to capitalize on that faceoff, as the puck eventually found Pastrnak off a failed clear by Connor Murphy, and Pastrnak scored past Lankinen with... 17 seconds left. Poetry, nearly a decade after the Blackhawks beat the Bruins with their own crucial 17 seconds.

The Bruins hung on to that lead in the closing seconds, winning 4-3.

Notes

  • Patrick Kane tied Bobby Hull for second-most points in Blackhawks’ franchise history with an assist on DeBrincat’s goal in the first period, his lone point of the game.
  • How’re you going to let this happen to yourself, Stillman?:
  • What a horrid night for the penalty kill. In 4:47 in the middle frame, the Blackhawks allowed 13 shot attempts, two high-danger chances, 0.76 expected goals and two real goals. The Blackhawks couldn’t find ways to stay disciplined enough during the second period to keep off the ice against one of the best power plays in the league, and that would pave the way for their eventual loss after taking the lead early in the second.
  • The Blackhawks also weren’t the greatest at 5-on-5, although they started out well and progressively got worse as the game wore on. Chicago started the game with nine shots on goal to six at 5-on-5 in the first period and ended up with a 16-7 deficit in the third. The Blackhawks were outclassed in terms of both high-danger chances and expected goals at 5-on-5 throughout the game, although the chances Chicago did generate they took advantage of.
  • A rare bad game from the line of DeBrincat, Dylan Strome and Kane, as the line had a 39.48% expected goal share in 15:01 at 5-on-5 and 33.33% high-danger share. However, the line did score one goal at 5-on-5 and allow none, fortunately. They were also far from the worst line for the Blackhawks (that goes to Dominik Kubalik, Philipp Kurashev and Tyler Johnson, who had a 9.55 xGF%) but weren’t as good as the other line with a 5-on-5 goal for the Blackhawks, Hagel, Jonathan Toews and Kirby Dach, who had a 63.53 xGF% and 55.56% shot share.
  • Alec Regula actually played more time than Riley Stillman (12:46 to 12:12), but Kurashev played just 5:04, more than two minutes less than his linemates. With this season effectively over in terms of playoff pursuit for the Blackhawks, it’s time to develop the kids, and Derek King can’t even really do that. So.
  • According to Natural Stat Trick, while the Blackhawks were undisciplined in terms of penalties in this game, one of the few positives, besides Hagel’s scoring prowess, was the Blackhawks’ ability to be disciplined on the puck. Chicago had just six giveaways, including two each from Strome and Kubalik, and 13 takeaways, with 12 players having at least one and DeBrincat having two.
  • Lankinen was... bad, as most of the goals against him came from the medium-danger range and he had just a .889 save percentage, stopping 32 of 36 pucks. He faced 2.74 expected goals and five high-danger chances, making four saves. At least he was competent from low-danger, making nine saves on nine shots.

Game Charts

Three stars

  1. David Pastrnak (BOS) — 2 G, 1 A, GWG
  2. Brandon Hagel (CHI) — 2 G
  3. Alex DeBrincat (CHI) — 1 G, 1 A

What’s next

The Blackhawks head to Ottawa to take on the Senators on Saturday before heading back home to finish the series with the Bruins on Tuesday.