David Pastrnak's OT goal sends Bruins past Oilers
EDMONTON - Not much was special about special teams on Wednesday night, but it didn't matter,
The Bruins went 0-for-7 on the power play and its penalty kill allowed the Oilers to tie the game in the third period to send it to overtime, but David Pastrnak saved the day with a breakaway in overtime to give the Bruins a 2-1 win at Rogers Place.
"I think we've had a very good power play here for a lot of years," said Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy. "I'd say this last little stretch it's not coming as easy, they're taking away some of our options and we have to be less stubborn and take what's available."
That ended up not mattering as Pastrnak played the hero role to send the Bruins to their 10th win in 11 games.
"Torey (Krug) had the one on two, made a great defensive play," said Pastrnak. "(David Krejci) won a battle and I was gone. He sent it over. Just went on the breakaway so little, they poke check it so figured I'd go five-hole. As soon as Torey poked it to (Krejci) in the corner and he had a split-second, a good player like Krejci, that's all he needed."
The Bruins have only allowed three goals in a game once since Jan. 19, a loss to the Red Wings, and they held the Oilers down early and withstood their late rush to win their fourth game in a row.
Patrice Bergeron, inching toward matching his career high, took a pass from Brad Marchand that split the defense with 9:05 gone in the frame and dangled his way towards the net, potting his 27th tally and putting the Bruins ahead 1-0.
The Bruins didn't see success on their first power power plays, including a four minute double-minor for high sticking from Kailer Yamamoto on Charlie Coyle at the end of the first period.
Edmonton finished the first frame with just two shots on goal, but redeemed themselves with a flurry on a power play midway through the second.
The Oilers struggled through another power play afterwards, their second they cut short by committing a penalty of their own, but hung around and closed the shots gap quickly.
While the Bruins couldn't find the net again into the third, they allowed the Oilers - Connor McDavid-less and all - to hang around. They gave Edmonton its fourth power play early in the third with a Karson Kuhlman tripping call, and that time, they struck.
With 16:18 left in the frame, and 17 seconds remaining on the power play, Ethan Bear blasted a shot from the corner of the blue line tipped in by Sam Gagner over Tuukka Rask's glove to make it a 1-1 game.
The Bruins were gifted a chance to respond 5:25 into the frame from an Oilers penalty for too many men, and they couldn't take advantage against the Oilers second-ranked power play in the league.
Tempers boiled over 9:34 into the third after Alex Chiasson ran Matt Grzelcyk into the boards and a mini-brawl behind Rask's net ensued, but Joakim Nordstrom earned the only roughing call to put the Oilers back on the man advantage. Charlie Coyle broke in toward the Oilers net, where Edmonton goalie Mike Smith batted it away, but Coyle was slashed and it became the third Oilers power play they cut short with a penalty of their own.
It was the seventh consecutive power play the Bruins came up empty.
"Penalty kills were clearly better than the power plays tonight," said Cassidy. "Puck was bouncing a bit, that has something to do with it. At the end of the day you're going to have those nights and both teams have good special teams on both sides, good goaltending. So listen, you're glad to win a hockey game when you don't need your power play to score, could have made life easier for us."
Pastrnak was sent to the box for a trip with 2:30 remaining, giving the Oilers a golden chance to take the game before overtime, but they barely got a shot on net, and it went to the extra frame.
Pastrnak made up for that and more 1:14 into OT.
For his 43rd goal of the season, Pastrnak tucked the puck under Smith off a pass from Krejci to get the win.
"I give Edmonton a lot of credit," said Cassidy. "They've done that lately, they're a little light in their lineup, good for them and their American League guys to do that job... That's kind of how it played out tonight. We were able to convert."
The Bruins face the Flames in Calgary on Friday in the third game of the road trip.
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