Boston Bruins v Philadelphia Flyers - Game One

Bruins force Brian Boucher out of Flyers net, end second period up 5-2


Going into this series, the obvious problem for the Philadelphia Flyers was their goaltending. That trend continued through the first two periods of today’s Game 1 match against the Boston Bruins, as Brian Boucher didn’t make it through the middle frame.

Boston 5, Philadelphia 2

The Bruins deserve credit for building this lead, though. As we discussed during the first intermission, the Nathan Horton-David Krejci-Milan Lucic line is more than the Flyers can handle. Krejci added another goal to his points total by deflecting an Adam McQuaid shot. The real heartbreaker came before that, though, as Mark Recchi gave the Bruins a 3-1 lead 2:33 into the middle frame.

Brad Marchand’s rebound goal made it 5-1, chasing Boucher from the Bruins’ net. It almost seemed like a light switch went off once Sergei Bobrovsky took Boucher’s place, though, as James van Riemsdyk scored his fifth goal of the playoffs just 16 seconds later to make it 5-2.

It’s not just the Flyers goaltending that is an issue, as the Bruins are winning most of the puck battles and that top line is just dominating Philadelphia right now. Really, the only negative for Boston is that their power play is still impotent, as they went 0-for-4 in the first two periods to bring their total to 0-for-25.

One must note that the Flyers have the firepower to come back, but three goals is a lot to ask in one period. They’ll need an early goal or two for this third period to be more than just a 20 minute opportunity to send messages for Game 2 and the series in general. Don’t assume that they can’t make a game of this one, though.

You can chat with us and stream the game here.

Personal reasons: No Ovechkin for Caps tonight

Alex Ovechkin
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Alex Ovechkin won’t play for the Washington Capitals on Tuesday because of personal reasons, the team confirmed.

He entered the building considerably later than usual, but his presence at least opened the door for the possibility of No. 8 suiting up against the San Jose Sharks.

Instead, the Capitals will face the hot-starting Sharks without Ovechkin (personal reasons) and Nicklas Backstrom (injury).

That’s a tall order, yet it’s also an opportunity for Barry Trotz to prove his system is a difference-maker … and that the Capitals have the young players to take up the mantle when the big stars are out

This is how Washington’s forward lines may look tonight:

No, the Capitals have not shared details regarding what his “personal reasons” might be, by the way.

Bruins put Morrow on IR, bring up Cross

Brady Skjei, Joe Morrow
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Lower-level defense is not the biggest of many worries for the Boston Bruins, yet it might be another in a series of headaches.’s Joe Haggerty points out that Joe Morrow has been placed on IR while AHL stalwart Tommy Cross was called up.

With a -3 rating and negligible offensive impact so far, few will really be missing Morrow (pictured). From the way Haggerty describes Cross, it’s a pretty cool story if he gets into the lineup:

Cross was named captain of the Providence Bruins this season, and actually had a strong training camp as the hard-hitting, tough stay-at-home defenseman he’s developed into during his five years in the B’s minor league system. The 2007 second round pick was a highly regarded potential puck-moving defenseman when he was drafted prior to his Boston College career, but a series of knee injuries negated some of his speed and puck-moving capabilities.

Granted, the Bruins would prefer a sure-thing improvement over a feel-good story right now, as this 0-3-0 start marks their worst beginning in some time.

Injuries have been an issue in general, too, with Zdeno Chara‘s slow start mixed with Dennis Seidenberg on the mend and Brad Marchand in limbo.

The Bruins’ next game comes against the Avalanche in Colorado. Maybe they’ll start to mend things on the ice?