The Bruins stormed back all season, except at the very end.
Down in three series during the postseason, they always clawed back. Even in the regular season, comebacks were in their DNA, at times waiting until the final moments to pull everything together and make something special happen.
The gas tank hit empty one game too soon, rendering all the past angst and response for naught.
After dominating the first period and being stoned by Jordan Binnington on every point-blank look, the Bruins surrendered two late-period tallies and never recovered. The Blues capitalized and held on, earning a 4-1 win in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final.
It is the first Stanley Cup victory for the Blues, nearly 50 years after losing to Bobby Orr and the Bruins in their previous appearance in 1970.
The first Stanley Cup Final Game 7 in Garden history was one of the Bruins’ more lackluster efforts of the 2019 postseason, with a listless second period in response to a brutal end of the first when a line change error with seven seconds left had them in a 2-0 hole.
Binnington (32 saves) set the early tone, taking the Bruins’ best punch without error.
Turns out that initial flurry of saves was all the Blues needed.
The Blues rookie goaltender stonewalled shot after shot, including a wide-open Brad Marchand look from the slot and David Krejci’s cut inside the net.
David Pastrnak had a couple of would-be open looks disappear as he whiffed on the shots.
Unlike previous contests where the Blues forecheck dominated, the Bruins made life difficult for the Blues to push through the neutral zone and controlled the possession for most of the first period.
Ryan O’Reilly drew first blood with 3:13 to play during a shift where the Bruins couldn’t clear the zone. He tipped in a puck wristed from just under the blueline to put the Blues up 1-0, despite being outshot 7-3 at that point.
Alex Pietrangelo doubled that lead on a poor line change with just seven seconds left in the period. Marchand mishandled a change, leading to open ice for the blues and Pietrangelo lifted a backhand shot past Rask for the 2-0 lead heading into the first intermission.
Binnington shut the door into the second period as well, as the Bruins drove to the net but didn’t penetrate. Later, the Blues were quick to clear, ending any groove they were in getting pucks on net.
For the remainder of the middle frame, the Bruins looked as lost as any point all playoffs. Passes missed the mark, possessions were short, and they didn’t put shots on net.
Binnington’s final act came with about 10 minutes left in the third when he stopped a wide-open Joakim Nordstrom on the back door, the Bruins first real challenging shot since the opening period.
Moments later, with 8:35 left in the game, Brayden Schenn put it away with the Blues’ third goal, sealing the franchise’s first title.
With 4:38 left, Zach Sanford piled on for the 4-0 lead.
Matt Grzelcyk, in his first game back since suffering a …read more
Source:: Daily times