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Monday, December 14, 2015

Bruins Rally From 2-0 Deficit But Eventually Fall 3-2 in Overtime to Red-Hot Oilers

Most people outside of Edmonton probably aren't aware of this but believe it or not, the Oilers (14-15-2) are the hottest team in the NHL. They picked up their sixth straight win tonight, a 3-2 overtime victory at TD Garden against the Bruins (16-9-4). Edmonton jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first period then Boston eventually tied it with a goal in the second and a goal in the third before defenseman Andrej Sekera won it 41 seconds into overtime. This was a bitter loss for the Bruins since they fired a season-high 49 shots on Cam Talbot (47 saves).

This was the third straight time that Boston and Edmonton have gone to overtime and the Oilers improved to 2-0 against the Bruins this season after winning in a shootout at home a few weeks back. The B's fell to 1-3 in overtime this season and 1-1 in shootouts. Jordan Eberle (1 goal, 2 assists) and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (1 goal, 1 assist) showed off some of their immense talents in the win. Eberle scored at 8:29 of the first period after the puck bounced off the back boards to him and he was able to beat Jonas Gustavsson (21 saves) from a tight angle. Eberle's seventh goal of the season was assisted by BU's Eric Gryba and Brandon Davidson.

After Zdeno Chara fell, Eberle fed Nugent-Hopkins for an easy goal at 13:58 of the first. Nikita Nikitin had the other assist on Nugent-Hopkins' eighth goal of the season. Some puck luck finally went Boston's way at 13:29 of the second period as Matt Beleskey's stuff shot went in off Talbot after the goaltender kicked it back with his leg pad. Beleskey has been snake-bitten most of the way in his first season with the Black and Gold so he probably deserved this after playing well for weeks. David Krejci and Chara assisted on Beleskey's fourth goal of the season.

Brad Marchand is starting to put together an All-Star type resume in 2015-16 so predictably he was the Bruin that tied it up with 4:38 left in regulation. The play actually looked offside and was reviewed but stood up for his team-leading 15th goal of the season. Landon Ferraro and Patrice Bergeron assisted on Marchand's shot that went up under the bar over Talbot's blocker (with a defenseman possibly screening him as well).

As noted in the records, overtime still doesn't seem to agree with Boston. In fact, after losing the opening faceoff in the extra session, the Oilers had the puck in the Bruins' end the entire time. Sekera's initial shot went off of Torey Krug (who was tied up in front) then with all the extra space he was able to collect the rebound and put it in for his third goal of the season. Eberle and Nugent-Hopkins assisted on the overtime game-winner that had to make former Bruins GM/current Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli smile.

Up next, the Bruins have a home-and-home with the Penguins (15-11-3) who lost head coach Mike Sullivan's debut 4-1 tonight against Washington. Pittsburgh is in ninth place in the Eastern Conference and 3-4-3 in their last 10 games. Wednesday (8, NBCSN) at the Garden will be the first matchup of the season.

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