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Bruins blow 3-0 lead, lose 5-3 to Rangers during furious comeback

April 4, 2011

Vinny Prospal's two second period goals gave the Rangers confidence going into the third period in which they scored three goals. (Getty)

The Bruins jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first 30 minutes of the game and looked dominant in the first period but they relaxed their way to five consecutive goals against and the Rangers were able to claw back and steal two points. Vinny Prospal started the comeback with two goals in the second half. The Rangers would then score three goals in the last four minutes to tie, lead, and win the game late by a 5-3 margin.

The Rangers intensity was noticeable in the first few minutes as the team has essentially entered their playoffs as they fight to get in the playoffs. The Rangers kept Henrik Lundqvist relatively safe despite a charging Bruins offense at time but took the first penalty of the game just six minutes in following a David Krejci chance in low. The Bruins power-play looked pretty decent, moving the puck well against a relaxed Rangers box but they couldn’t generate good rebound chances off their one-timers.

The Rangers would soon get their first power-play when Patrice Bergeron was called for tripping. The puck had been in the Rangers zone for a lot of the first 10 minutes so the power-play gave the Rangers a chance to turn the tide. The Rangers would get a couple shots on net, their first shot coming nearly 11 minutes into the game but couldn’t get off the boards against a tenacious Bruins penalty-kill.

Daniel Paille opened up the scoring after a partial breakaway attempt led to some chaos in the Rangers zone and eventually to a Johnny Boychuk fake shot-pass to Paille for the redirect goal in the paint. Paille was initially sent running on a nice indirect pass but could only muster a weak backhander on net. The Bruins won the puck and Michael Ryder faked a shot in the slot then fed to a trailing Boychuk. Boychuk crept all the way down to the dot before unleashing a nice shot-pass to Paille who had his stick down for the tap-in.

The Rangers nearly scored moments later on a similar pass to the crease but the puck inexplicably escaped the gaping net. The ensuing Bruins rush ended with the Bruins second goal when Nathan Horton golfed in some loose change in the slot. Milan Lucic backhanded a puck into the slot where Krejci got off two shot attempts. The Rangers finally crashed on him but the puck squirted behind and Horton hit the bouncing puck over Lundqvist’s shoulder and in.

The Bruins ended the period with a 19-5 shot advantage that had Rangers fans booing the team into the dressing room.


The Rangers came out with a better offensive effort to start the period and it quickly drew a penalty when Krejci was called for hooking. The Rangers really couldn’t get anything going on the power-play, losing all the battles along the boards and the Bruins were able to clear several times.

The Bruins would jump out to a 3-0 lead when Chris Kelly jumped on a bouncing puck and broke out an odd-man rush. Seeing that there was no shooting lane Kelly fired a shot low blocker side, beating Lundqvist clean for his first goal as a Bruin. The shot was something Lundqvist usually stops and an indication that he wasn’t on top of his game.

The Rangers answered back just moments later when a turnover in the Bruins zone led to a Wojtek Wolski shot. Tim Thomas came out high and appeared to make the save but the puck squirted under his pads and Vinny Prospal jumped on the rebound behind Thomas and put it in.

To make matters worse for the Bruins, David Krejci went to the box for slashing, his second penalty of the period. The penalty gave the suddenly energized Rangers a chance to claw back into the game. The Bruins bounced back with a very strong kill to stem the tide.

The Rangers would get a crucial goal late in the period when Vinny Prospal got his second goal of the game in front of the net. Wolski backhanded a pass out front and Prospal put a shot on as Thomas was sliding, catching the goalie with his five-hole open. The goal got the Rangers and their fans up and energized.


Dennis Seidenberg was called for tripping less than a minute into the third period, giving the Rangers their fourth consecutive power-play. The Bruins killed it off pretty well, an important kill at the beginning of the period. The Bruins couldn’t get much going in the offensive zone and were often found scrambling around their own net.

The Bruins furious start seemed to take their legs away by the end of the period as the team started getting muddled in their own zone and lacked that certain punch that dominated the first period. Much of the end of the period took place in the Bruins zone with the Rangers working long grinding shifts that wore down the Bruins defense.

Brandon Dubinsky eventually tied the game with under four minutes left when he parked on the doorstep and put in a backhander under Thomas to tie the game. Ryan Callahan wheeled a reverse 360 pass from the other end of the zone and the pass found an uncovered Dubinsky out front. Dubinsky was able to hold the puck, go to the backhand and put it under Thomas for the Rangers third straight goal.

The Rangers would score less than a minute later when a cross-zone pass found it’s way to to Mike Sauer who fisted a shot on net. The shot wasn’t anything spectacular but caught Thomas sliding post-to-post and squeaked under him. Boychuk almost scraped the puck off the line but was a split second too late.

The Bruins were forced to pull their goalie with 75 seconds left and Derek Stepan put in the fifth consecutive Rangers goal for the dagger.

The Bruins will head home to play the Isles on Wednesday.

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