Stanley Cup Finals Game 5: Boston 1 – St. Louis 2
The series is back in Boston, and man was the crowd going nuts. As the Bruins came out for pregame warmups, Zdeno Chara led the way onto the ice, broken jaw and all. The big man broke his jaw in Game 4 after taking a deflected shot to the face, but he is one crazy s.o.b. and was active and starting. Seeing Chara on the ice really amped up the crowd, especially when he laid out a hit on the first shift of the game, and the Bruins fed off the noise.
In the first period, the Bruins got off to a pretty good start. They did have a different look in this game as they dressed 7 defensemen and only 11 forwards as Steven Kampfer entered and David Backes sat out. It was an interesting move and I understand why you would do that, in case Chara needs extra time off or someone gets hurt again on defense you don’t drop a defender like in Games 2 and 4, both of which the Blues won. Nonetheless, Boston had their chances to score in the period. Jordan Binnington got off to a hot start as he made some big saves and got a little help from the crossbar on a Brad Marchand shot. Tuukka Rask was great again to start this game as he was making all the right moves as well. He robbed the Blues of a goal on a one-timer where Tuukka had to go left to right to make the save and he made it look easy.
As we moved onto the second period, the intensity rose even more and the Blues capitalized on a great chance where Ryan O’Reilly would give the Blues an early lead in the second period.
After the goal, the refs swallowed their whistles and let the boys play. I personally thought that they blew a few calls in the period, but it’s over. When the Bruins did earn a power play, they looked horrible. They struggled to make zone entries, and when they did they weren’t getting the puck on net. After the power play ended, there was under a minute to play in the period and the Blues were charging. They had a shot on what appeared to be an open net when David Krejci came out of nowhere to make the save with his arm sending the game to the third period 1-0 Blues.
In the third, the Blues would be all over the Bruins to start the period. Eventually the Bruins would start to find their game and just when it appeared that they would have a power play, the refs don’t make an easy call again. Tyler Bozak skated right into the back of Noel Acciar’s leg and tripped him from behind, the Blues picked up the loose puck and scored to make it 2-0. It was a horrible non call and the fans let the refs no about it. The Bruins would respond to the goal with a great shift that saw Jake DeBrusk score on a one-timer off the pass from Torey Krug.
With less than five minutes to go and a 2-1 game, the Bruins were running out of time to tie the game up. Tuukka Rask would be pulled for the extra attacker and with only seconds remaining the Bruins would have a few good chances, but Binnington stood tall and made the saves. The Blues won 2-1 and now have a 3-2 series lead heading back to St. Louis for Game 6. The game is Sunday night at 8pm.
Videos courtesy of NHL.com