December 5, 2023


David Pastrnak scored his fourth objective of the season within the second interval to place the Sharks away and begin the Bruins’ highway journey on a excessive notice.

Charlie McAvoy and Linus Ullmark celebrated one other win for the Bruins within the early phases of the season. (AP Picture/Jeff Chiu)

Jim Montgomery reportedly didn’t take too form to the Bruins’ strategy over their final two days of observe.

In accordance with The Athletic’s Fluto Shinzawa, the second-year Boston coach had some alternative phrases for his membership hours earlier than the opening puck drop in San Jose.

Maybe the prolonged four-day layover factored into the current sluggish coaching classes. However Montgomery not often showcased any vocal displeasure a yr in the past. Within the uncommon cases of turmoil, the reigning Jack Adams Award winner usually turned to Patrice Bergeron, David Krejci, Brad Marchand, and different veterans to take management of the room.

Even with Marchand taking up the captaincy reigns, Montgomery will seemingly want to offer extra powerful love because the season approaches with the transitional Bruins. He can look to Thursday’s end result as a blueprint.

After buying and selling scoring possibilities with the Sharks for many of the first 20, the Bruins jumped out to a 2-0 lead over the Sharks when Marchand and James van Riemsdyk scored in a 21-second span late within the opening stanza.

A pair of lucky bounces benefitted the Bruins and Sharks within the closing 40.

Following a tough drive to the web, David Pastrnak scored on a ping-pong-like tally off a number of Sharks defenders to increase Boston’s cushion to 3-0 at 16:46 of the center body.

Boston’s lone blemish got here when Anthony Duclair’s feed to the entrance of the web deflected off of Hampus Lindholm’s skate and previous Linus Ullmark to place San Jose on the board 11:13 into the third.

The Bruins struggled to capitalize on their a number of high quality scoring possibilities. However they leaned on one other strong defensive effort and remained efficient offensively, outshooting the lowly Sharks 36-27.

“It was the primary sport of the highway journey, and we haven’t performed in a bit,” Marchand instructed NESN’s Adam Pellerin. “Positively some issues we have to proceed to wash up, but when we proceed to enhance whereas we’re getting factors, it will likely be good.”

Right here’s what we realized from the Bruins’ 3-1 victory to kick off their four-game highway journey.

Charlie Coyle stays snug in a third-line function.

Even with the break day, the Bruins hadn’t gone a day this season with out some lineup tweaks. However Thursday supplied the primary occasion of Coyle returning to the third line.

After a strong displaying by means of the primary 4 video games of the Florida collection, the Bruins hoped Coyle would decide up proper the place he left off in the midst of Marchand and Jake DeBrusk. However Matthew Poitras’ preliminary impression prompted Montgomery to present the 19-year-old his first have a look at top-six minutes, prompting Coyle’s transfer again to his snug spot on the third line.

Coyle and Trent Frederic regained their chemistry after skating with a rotating solid of left-wingers a yr in the past. van Riemsdyk joined the duo after spending his first two video games in a top-six function with Pavel Zacha and David Pastrnak.

Maybe Montgomery discovered a keeper with the van Riemsdyk-Coyle-Frederic trio. Of their first sport collectively, the third line held a 10-2 edge in photographs on internet and a 12-3 cushion in shot makes an attempt throughout 5v5 play.

Their skillsets nicely on Boston’s second objective, as Coyle showcased his puck possession prowess earlier than firing his preliminary shot try, permitting extra space in entrance of the web for Frederic and van Riemsdyk. The ability forwards jammed for the free puck on a number of events earlier than van Riemsdyk nudged the rebound previous Kappo Kahkonen for his third objective of the season.

“He’s undoubtedly a horse within the offensive zone with the puck like that,” van Riemsdyk instructed reporters of Coyle. “He attracts the additional man to him, so there’s a number of open ice on the market. That’s what occurred on the objective. He had plenty of eyes on him, and we had been capable of finding some delicate ice and get a few further whacks at it.”

The Bruins may have the time off on Friday earlier than making their freeway stops in Los Angeles and Anaheim on Saturday and Sunday. After extra in-game changes, Montgomery could have one other spherical of modifications in retailer for the highest six. But he shouldn’t want to change the van Riemsdyk-Coyle-Frederic trio following their first outing collectively.

Johnny Beecher is proving his value.

Poitras garnered consideration along with his spectacular begin to his younger profession. However the teen hit a roadblock on Thursday whilst he initiated a setup for Marchand’s marker late within the first interval.

With the puck within the attacking finish, Beecher hopped over the boards to start his shift as Poitras skated to the bench for a change. Earlier than that, Poitras received the puck in deep, prompting a well timed pinch from Derek Forbort deep in Boston’s attacking finish. Beecher regained possession of the puck on the blue line earlier than sliding the puck to Marchand for a scoring likelihood. 

Marchand delivered a top-shelf snipe for his first of the season and concurrently gave Beecher his first profession NHL level.

Boston’s belief in Beecher continued as Montgomery trotted the second-year professional out for pivotal faceoffs and penalty kills. The previous Michigan Wolverine didn’t take an offensive zone faceoff, however nonetheless went 7-for-11 from the dot and received each of his attracts in shorthanded conditions.

“It’s enormous figuring out that they’ve that belief in me,” Beecher instructed reporters. “It takes plenty of possession on my own simply to get the job finished. This league can humble you fairly fast. So that you’re simply ensuring you cross your T’s and dot your I’s once you’re on the market and also you’re doing the little issues proper. However, it feels superior to have the ability to be put on the market.”

Like Poitras, Beecher earned his spot within the lineup with a strong preseason. He could not have as a lot offensive upside as Poitras, however Beecher’s power and work ethic swimsuit him nicely as a possible long-term choice in the midst of the underside six.

The three-0 Bruins are bettering and studying on the fly.

With a four-day layoff between video games and journey combined in, the Bruins seemingly anticipated some lulls to kick off their first highway journey of the season. However a matchup with the rebuilding Sharks allowed them to enhance and be taught on the fly.

Montgomery didn’t get the cleanest effort from his membership after calling his crew out earlier within the morning. However the defensive effort didn’t drop off from their first two video games, and the intensive puck possession within the attacking finish led to an uptick in scoring possibilities alongside the high-danger areas.

The Sharks supplied some pushback in spurts. The Bruins struggled at occasions countering their preliminary appears, however prevented San Jose from producing secondary possibilities in opposition to Ullmark.

Certainly, the Bruins will want a extra well-rounded effort come Saturday for his or her first So. Cal cease in Los Angeles. However they’ll gladly take the 2 factors amid their seek for consistency.

“Effectively, there’s sufficient to love, but additionally, sufficient to show from,” Montgomery instructed NESN’s Andy Brickley. “We simply must get extra constant in how we need to play in sure areas of our sport…but it surely’s laborious to get two factors on this league and we’ve received three in a row now. It’s a very good begin to the season.”