The Boston Bruins blanked the Washington Capitals Thursday night at TD Garden, 3-0. It was by far Boston’s most complete game since resuming play following the Sochi layoff. The black-and-gold stymied Washington on the defense end and parlayed that into timely offense. Tuukka Rask was flawless in leading the Bruins to their third straight victory.
Boston made it a point to lockdown things on the defensive end above all else. Tight, layered, systematic defensive play limited the Caps to just 16 shots. Alex Ovechkin, who had his way in the win over the Bruins this past Saturday, was held in check from start to finish. The Bruins exhibited great discipline. They brought the intensity and punished Washington with an array of fierce body checks.
Rask recorded his sixth shutout of the season and 22nd of his career. He stood stout against the pressure he did face, turning aside 16 shots. Washington’s scoring chances were few and far between. It was Rask’s first career victory against the Caps.
Neither side committed a penalty in the game. It was the first time in 13 years that the Bruins particpated in a game without a penalty being called. Eliminating the NHL’s second ranked power play from factoring into the outcome of the tilt allowed the Bruins to focus on turning superb defense into offense.
The Bruins showed relentless aggression and exploited a Washington team playing in the second game of a back-to-back. The Caps were a step behind all evening and Claude Julien‘s club made sure to push the tempo.
Boston outshot the Caps 43-16. Gregory Campbell continued his recent hot streak as he netted a second period goal that broke a scoreless tie. Loui Eriksson also added a second period tally. It was all the Bruins would need. Brad Marchand slid Boston’s third goal into what was vacant Washington net just prior to the final horn.
Campbell tipped in a Patrice Bergeron shot while Eriksson stuffed home a nifty feed from Carl Soderberg. Campbell now has four goals in his last five games. Soderberg and Eriksson played with unparalleled chemistry and seem to be steadily developing into a lethal offensive duo.
The Bruins are 3-0 and the Caps are 0-3 since their meeting six days ago.
Boston will travel to Tampa Bay on Saturday for a divisional date with Steven Stamkos and the Lightning.