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Friday, January 31, 2014

Bruins Drop Their 1st Stinkbomb of the Season at TD Garden

I honestly feel bad for the people that paid good money to see the Bruins face the Canadiens tonight at TD Garden. For their time, energy and dough, they witnessed a 4-1 win for Montreal (29-20-5) that wasn't nearly that close. It was the first time this season that Boston (34-16-3) had lost by three goals at home. The strange part was that they were completely lifeless for about 58 of the 60 minutes combined.

Tuukka Rask faced Peter Budaj (34 saves)-Montreal's backup goaltender-which on paper looked like a great matchup for the B's. However, Rask proceeded to give up three goals in a period and a half. Claude Julien had seen enough since two of them were particularly weak.

You know something was up when a bum like Alexei Emelin scored the first goal, ironically his first of the season, with a shot from the point that Rask couldn't see through traffic at 2:16. New Canaan CT native (and Team USA forward) Max Pacioretty made it 2-0 at 14:32. It came on a breakaway so you can't fault Rask for that but Pacioretty's clumsy move and backhander wasn't exactly Crosby-esque.

Boston's only highlight was a goal originally credited to David Krejci but then changed to Dougie Hamilton who shot it from the point. His fifth goal of the season, assisted by the Swedes-Carl Soderberg and Loui Eriksson-came at 15:38.

Former BC star Brian Gionta's weak tip on a power play somehow eluded Rask at 11:54 of the second period for a 3-1 Canadiens lead. Rask's night was over as he stormed back to Boston's dressing room (look out milk crates!). Chad Johnson was summoned and rudely greeted by a breakaway and goal by washed up Daniel Briere at 13:46.

The third period was ultra rare garbage time at the Garden with the Black and Gold going through the motions and not doing anything positive of note. The good news for Boston is that they are back at the Garden on Saturday afternoon (1, NESN) to face the wretched Oilers (18-32-6, 7th in Pacific Division)-the worst team in the Western Conference who lost 4-2 to the Bruins on December 12 in Edmonton.

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