March 13, 2012

Turco lit up, Bruins embarrassed in 6-1 loss to Lightning

By Jesse Connolly

Final: Tampa Bay 6, Boston 1

Recap: If you thought the Bruins couldn’t play any worse than they did against the Penguins on Sunday, you were wrong. You were dead wrong.

Marty Turco got the start in net and “Turco Time” lasted precisely 271 seconds, as Tom Pyatt, Nate Thompson and Ryan Shannon (Darien, Conn.) tallied to make it 3-0. Tm Thomas came on and allowed a goal to Victor Hedman with 4:22 left in the frame, as Tampa got to four goals before the B’s got to two shots.

In the second, the Lightning were outshot 15-3, but outscored the B’s 1-0 on Steven Stamkos’ 49th of the season. Jordan Caron’s seventh of the year with 1:55 gone in the third broke the shutout, but Stamkos buried his 50th of the season with 8:17 to go.

That was all she wrote on the most undeniably miserable game of the 2011-12 season.

Records: Boston 40-26-3, 83 points; Tampa Bay 32-30-7, 71 points

Key Play of the Game: Jeez. This is supposed to be a moment in which the game truly turned, when one team rose to the occasion and set itself up for victory. I suppose the tone was set right off the hop when Turco lost his stick and caught a bad break when Pyatt kicked the puck in for the first goal. The avalanche of awfulness had officially begun.

Connolly’s Commendations: Moving on…

Connolly’s Critiques: As mentioned above, Tampa’s first tally shouldn’t have counted, but Turco was flat-out awful on Thompson’s tally. The veteran netminder awkwardly tried to pounce on a puck, failed and watched as the Lightning forward buried the biscuit into the open side of the net. Ballgame! Turco finished the night with eight saves on 12 shots. A .667 save percentage is not something you go bragging about at parties.

In the meantime, where the hell were his teammates for the entirety of the first period? Boston fired two shots on goal against unknown netminder Dustin Tokarski. Their inability to test the green goalie was a failure of epic proportions.

After carrying the team of late, Boston’s first line was simply brutal in the setback. David Krejci was on the ice for each of Tampa’s four goals in the first period, while linemates Milan Lucic and Tyler Seguin were there for three of them. Together, they finished a combined minus-10. Yeeouch.

Notes: The Bruins are now 2-5-0 in their last seven games down in Tampa. Boston’s record fell to 1-10-1 in the last 12 games Trent Whitfield has been in the lineup (including the 2010 postseason).

Final Thoughts: I could flip through the dictionary all night and not find the right words to properly describe just how miserable the Boston Bruins were on Tuesday night. First there were one-goal losses. Then came Sunday’s 5-2 setback against the Pens. How the B’s recover from a night like this is simply beyond me.

Next: The Bruins will try to pick up the pieces on Thursday night when they visit the Panthers.