October 10, 2013

Giguere, Avalanche blank Bruins

By Jesse Connolly

Jean-Sebastien Giguere stopped all 39 shots he faced, including four from Patrice Bergeron. (Photos: Sharon Bradley/New England Hockey Journal)

Final: Colorado 2, Boston 0

Recap: In an up-tempo first period in which the two teams combined for 24 shots, the Avs were the only team to find twine. Ryan O'Reilly was in the slot and tipped a shot from the point by Andre Benoit past Tuukka Rask to make it 1-0 Colorado.

In the second, Shawn Thornton and Patrick Bordeleau dropped the gloves and engaged in some rather hostile hugging before the B's winger landed a few solid punches. With under a minute to go in the frame, things got weird near J.S. Giguere's net. The result was a non-fight between Milan Lucic and Gabriel Landeskog, as the latter wouldn't throw down. Lucic was then given a game misconduct for shoving the Avs' captain after it was clear there wouldn't be a fight.

Boston put 14 pucks on net in the third, but Giguere was was sharp throughout. The veteran netminder stopped all 39 shots he faced, earning his first career shutout against the B's. Matt Duchene closed out the scoring with an empty-netter with 26 seconds to go.

Key Play of the Game: Boston's best scoring chances came in the first period when their power play was moving the puck well. Unless my eyes and ears deceived me, Johnny Boychuk and Dougie Hamilton hit the post less than a minute apart. One of those nights, I suppose.

Records: Colorado 4-0-0, eight points; Boston 2-1-0, four points

Connolly's Commendations: Kudos to Giguere. The man looked mighty impressive for a 75-year-old 36-year-old who had a rough go of it last season.

I t might not have found the back of the net, but it really is a treat to watch Krug maneuver on the power play and unleash lasers from the point.

Though he finished minus-1, thanks to being on the ice for Duchene's empty-netter, I thought this was Iginla's best game yet. The veteran winger looked extra agile and had a few quality chances, putting seven shots on goal.

Connolly's Critiques: Tough night for Loui Eriksson. The B's newcomer remains pointless on the year, had no shots on goal and was whistled for a decidedly bogus embellishment penalty when hooked by P.A. Parenteau midway through the third.

Notes: This was the first time someone shutout the Bruins since Feb. 28, 2012 (1-0 loss to Sens). 

Final Thoughts: It's really hard to pinpoint what went wrong for Boston. I think the frustration comes from the fact that the B's appeared to catch a break with Semyon Varlamov getting the night off, leaving a rusty Giguere to start behind a far-from-spectacular defensive corps. Of all teams to blank the B's, I probably would've pegged Colorado as the least likely to do so before the season began. Maybe they are, in fact, for real?

Next: The Bruins will travel to Columbus to take on the Blue Jackets on Saturday at 2 o'clock.

Twitter: @JesseNEHJ
Email: jconnolly@hockeyjournal.com