The Carolina Hurricanes jumped out to a 2-0 lead, stayed on their discipline, regardless of constant goading by their adversaries, and went on to defeat the Boston Bruins, 4-1 on Tuesday night at TD Garden.
After falling behind, the Bruins tried to bully the Canes but ended up being called for more penalty minutes than any other team so far this season, a total of 72, which included five misconducts and one instigator.
Anthony Stewart started off the scoring just 2:47 into the game when he knocked in a loose puck past Tuukka Rask to give the visitors a 1-0 lead. Newly recalled Brett Sutter kept the puck alive in the crease as he battled for a rebound.
Midway through the second period, Joni Pitkanen skated the puck in by himself and blasted it by Rask from the circle, to make it 2-0. Tuomo Ruutu started the sequence off with a diving hustle play to knock the puck out to his countryman.
Zdeno Chara then started the Boston meltdown off when he drew an instigator and misconduct by sucker-punching Jay Harrison. When that melee was broken up, he exchanged words with Cam Ward and looked to start things with him as well. Rask then skated the length of the ice to have words with Ward, to which the Carolina goalie stated afterward that he would not "waste his time on Tuukka Rask."
The Hurricanes were not able to capitalize on the ensuing 5-on-3, but little did they know that the Bruins would give them ample more opportunities.
Midway through the third, things would heat up again. Brett Sutter dropped the gloves with Chris Kelly after Milan Lucic got tangled up with Tim Gleason and Bryan Allen in front of the Hurricanes bench. Once again, Lucic was trying to get the top plus/minus guy in the league to drop the gloves, but Gleason did not take the bait.
Both Gleason and Allen were tossed in the box with Lucic, giving the Bruins a much needed powerplay, and the home team took advantage. Rich Peverley scored the powerplay goal to tighten things up at, 2-1.
But Nathan Horton would then go brain dead, once again trying to get Gleason to fight, as he was called for a double roughing and a misconduct after dropping the gloves and trying to get the defenseman to go when it was obvious Gleason had no interest.
Later in the period, Brad Marchand, Lucic, and coach Claude Julien would also get misconducts.
After a shaky start on their 5-on-3 attacks, Paul Maurice called time out to get things organized and the Canes finally ran a decent play and scored. Pitkanen was involved again as he passed to Jussi Jokinen who made a perfect feed to Eric Staal in front of the net.
Staal pretty much put the game out of reach at 3-1, but Ruutu would score another insurance goal on a beautiful set up by Chad LaRose on a 2-on-1 break.
The victory gives the Hurricanes three wins in a row as they continue on their road trip with a match against St. Louis on Friday night.
- The team deserves a lot of credit for maintaining their discipline as the Bruins did everything they could to turn the game into an outright donnybrook. The Canes had no reason to fight as they had a two goal lead at the time and their discipline won the game for them.
- Joni Pitkanen had a great game as he was solid in his own end, scored a goal, contributed with two assists, had two blocked shots, and played a team high 25:46 time on the ice.
- Cam Ward once again was solid as a rock in net. He turned away several tough chances early in the game, then didn't make any mistakes when the team gave him a lead. He finished making 33 saves on 34 shots.
- The Canes had 23 shots on goal, led by Staal, Ponikarovsky, and LaRose with three each. They were outchanced by Boston, 23-20.
- Jay Harrison led the team with four blocked shots, Brandon Sutter and Pitkanen had three each. The team had a total of 16 blocks.
- The team won 48% of their faceoffs. (Staal 45%, Sutter 47%, Jokinen 80%, Brent 25%)
- Carolina was credited with 18 hits, led by LaRose with three.
Paul Maurice 10 18 2011
Jay Harrison 10 18 2011
Eric Staal 10 18 2011
Cam Ward 10 18 2011