The Boston Bruins won their third consecutive season opener Wednesday night, a 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Flyers.
The Bruins won the game on a late-third period goal by Chris Kelly with 1:51 to go that ultimately earned the B’s two points. It was a play setup by Kelly, who came in strong as the support on the forecheck. He tossed it up to Adam McQuaid at the point, who threw the puck at the net. The Bruins created strong net-front traffic, and Kelly got his blade on a puck, re-directing it past Flyers goalie Steve Mason.
It was the climax of a late-game momentum drive by the Bruins. The new-look fourth line, which had Craig Cunningham centering Daniel Paille and Bobby Robins came up with the shift of the game in the 14th minute of the final period. The Bruins wanted to add fresh blood to the line following last season. While it was just one game, it certainly looked like that Wednesday.
It was a strong effort by the Bruins, who gave the Flyers little to work with. Tuukka Rask was challenged little, relegated to stopping the shots he was supposed to stop. There were limited odd-man situations, second-chance opportunities and traffic in the big ice for Philly. Much of that came courtesy of a strong night in the defensive zone for the B’s.
Now it’s onto Detroit, where the Bruins will face the Red Wings in a rematch of the 2014 Eastern Conference quarterfinal series. Game No. 2 of a seven game in 11 day stretch to open the season.