March 16, 2013

Postgame Breakdown: Lucic leads B's in beatdown of Caps

By Jesse Connolly

Capitals d-man Steve Olesky attempts to sniff Milan Lucic's elbow during Saturday's game at the Garden. (Photo: Getty Images)

Final: Boston 4, Washington 1

Recap: With 14:12 gone in the opening period, Nathan Horton buried his first goal since Feb. 28, firing home a shot from the slot off of a nice feed from Milan Lucic to make it 1-0. Just 3:03 later, Lucic again notched the primary assist, setting up David Krejci for the game's second goal.

Krejci buried another shot in the second period. Unfortunately, it was into Boston's net, as his errant clearing attempt found its way past Anton Khudobin. That was all the offense the Caps could muster.

Boston made it a 3-1 game midway through the second, as Andrew Ference beat Michal Neuvirth with a wrister from the point. In the third, Rich Peverley stretched the lead to three with a power-play goal at 2:41 that closed out the scoring.

Records: Boston 19-4-3, 41 points; Washington 11-15-1 23 points

Key Play of the Game: It's really hard to choose one exactly, but the highlight of the afternoon was every time Matt Hendricks got punched in the face. Between Nathan Horton and Adam McQuaid fighting the former B's farmhand, that number turned out to be pretty high.

Connolly's Commendations: Three cheers for the first line finally breaking out. While Krejci had done a solid job of accumulating points of late, both Lucic and Horton were in a serious rut. The three combined for nine points on the afternoon.

Khudobin didn't have to make miracles happen in the crease, but if it weren't for Krejci's own-goal, the Kazakhstani netminder would've had a shutout this afternoon. He finished with 32 saves on 33 shots. 

Connolly's Critiques: Hard to find fault with anyone's game today. Every Bruin shy of Jay Pandolfo had a shot on goal, and no member of the Black and Gold finished with a negative plus-minus rating.

Notes: David Krejci notched the 300th point of his NHL career. Johnny Boychuk left the game for a few minutes after colliding with a Capital in the offensive zone in the first period but returned well before the intermission. Brad Marchand (Mike Ribeiro) and Horton (Hendricks) each got in their first fight of the 2013 season.

Final Thoughts: After an absolute snoozefest Thursday against the listless Panthers, today's matinee was jam-packed with entertainment value. The Bruins beat the Caps soundly on the scoreboard and gave them a serious whoopin' when the gloves were off. And, as a little cherry on top, Alex Ovechkin did squat.

Next: The Bruins will now head to Pittsburgh to once again take on Sidney Crosby and the Penguins, who beat the Rangers by a score fo 3-0 on Saturday afternoon.

Twitter: @JesseNEHJ