Tonight the New York Islanders came to the Garden with every intention of winning, proving why they deserve to be in the post-season for the first time since 2006-2007. Their never give up attitude helped push them to a 1-goal advantage late in the first period, a deficit the Bruins would be unable to overcome and lose by a total of 2-1.
The first period began fairly decent for the Bruins as they, once again, sported new lines with the absence of Brad Marchand and rejoining of defenseman Adam McQuaid. They came out skating well and played solid hockey with quite a few chances. Unfortunately, it would be Josh Bailey who was able to capitalize in the final 21 seconds of the first frame, taking the edge off of the Isles and deflating the Bruins heading into the first intermission.
The second period began with the Bruins trying to earn the late goal back, and with persistence from Tyler Seguin on the power play, they were able to just that. As Boyes was called for a delay of game penalty, Jaromir Jagr and Gregory Campbell (filling in for Lucic) would help get the puck to Seguin at the lower left circle where he was able to rifle it past Evgeni Nabakov and tie the game at a single marker. As the clock dwindled the seconds away, the Isles began to get their momentum back once more, littering Tuukka Rask with shots, earning what would be the game-winning goal from Josh Bailey once again. Bailey let the puck go from the left circle, much like Seguin’s goal and it slowly trickled in behind Rask to reinstate the Isles 1-goal lead.
While the Bruins were present on the ice for the third period, they were nowhere near the same third period team fans were watching two years ago. You can only blame the under-performance on injuries,line changes and bad chemistry for so long before you have to dig deeper. Through the final twenty they provided a late surge, but one that wasn’t enough to earn them added minutes or the needed two-goals for two points to clinch the playoff spot.
It has since been reported that the Montreal Canadiens regained possession of the Northeast Division in their victory against the Buffalo Sabres tonight. The Bruins will return to action against the Carolina Hurricanes in Raleigh on Saturday, as they look for the series sweep.