-Ten NHL players have filed a lawsuit against the league claiming it has not done enough to protect players from brain injuries. Former Penguins left winger Brad Aitken is among the 10.
-We're not smart enough legally to tell you how this case might go. But if you'll allow a parallel to another sport, once several ex-NFL players took that league to court, the NFL began taking serious steps to limit head injuries. It will be interesting to see how the NHL reacts once this case gets far enough.
-The Penguins haven't officially identified what Beau Bennett's injury is. We re-watched every shift he had in Friday's 4-3 win against the Islanders and couldn't identify one play or sequence which would have led to an injury. But if you re-watch his last shift from that game in the third period, he appears to be waving his right hand or arm. He eventually heads to the bench and directly down the ramp way to the dressing room. Please excuse the quality of the video:
-Bennett suffered a pretty serious right wrist injury in college.
-The Penguins will face a Bruins team missing a few players on defense. Dennis Seidenberg, one of the best defensive blue liners in the NHL, and sturdy Adam McQuaid are expected to be sidelined. In their place will be Mt. Lebanon's Matt Bartkowski and rookie Kevan Miller.
-We would fully expect the Bruins to sic defenseman Zdeno Chara and Douglie Hamilton on Sidney Crosby's line along with Selke Trophy-winning center Patrice Bergeron. That presumably mean Evgeni Malkin would get better matchups. If so, Malkin needs to keep producing offense.
-Marc-Andre Fleury is in need of a rebound game after an off night in Montreal Saturday.
-The Penguins' starters are Sidney Crosby, Pascal Dupuis, Chris Kunitz, Paul Martin, Brooks Orpik and Marc-Andre Fleury.
-Their scratches are Robert Bortuzzo, Andrew Ebbett and Tanner Glass.
-The Bruins' starters are Patrice Bergeron, Loui Eriksson, Brad Marchand, Zdeno Chara, Dougie Hamilton and Tuukka Rask.
-Their scratches are Jordan Caron, Adam McQuaid and Dennis Seidenberg.
19:40: Crosy gets a step on Chara who takes a tumble in the right circle. He flicks a backhander on net. Rask fights it off. Kunitz can't quite get a stick on the rebound.
19:30: Kunitz has a chance in tight off a loose puck. Rask is able to slide to his right and kick it out with his right leg.
17:15: Chris Kelly has a wrister from above the left circle blocked.
16:54: Shawn Thornton whips a spinning wrister from above the left circle. Fleury kicks it to the near corner.
16:23: Craig Adams lifts a wrister from the left wing. Rask traps it against his chest.
15:18: The Penguins will get the first power play of the game. Marchand brushed his stick into Crosby's face. That's two minutes for high sticking. Crosby, Kunitz, Malkin, Martin and James Neal take the ice.
15:06: A wrister/pass by Malkin from the right half wall is blocked out of play by the stick of Chara's stick.
14:54: Neal lifts a laser of a wrister from the left circle. Rask fights it off. Kunitz is there for the rebound but can't get a clean shot off.
14:27: Malkin dances into the offensive zone, dekes around Chara with a dazzling move and lifts a wrister form the right circle. Rask fight sit off. You don't see Chara give up a chance like that.
14:08: Off a feed by martin, Crosby whacks a one-timer from the right point. Rask eats it up despite Kunitz hovering for a rebound.
13:34: Jussi Jokinen lifts a wrister from the left circle. Bartkowski deflects it out of play.
13:21: Malkin whacks a one-timer from the right half wall. Rask steers ita way.
13:10: Bergeron emerges from the penalty box and challenges Kris Letang one-on-one. Letang is able to poke the puck off his blade at the Penguins' blue line. Malkin hurries on a backcheck to take the puck away.
12:56: Crusbo hustles up the left wing and leaves a drop pass. Martin is above the left circle and booms a slapper which Rask fights off.
12:50: Martin guides a slapper from the left point. It hits a stick and deflects wide.
11:34: Sutter pushes the puck up the right wing one-on-one against Chris Kelly, he flips the puck to his backhand, veers towards the right circle and lifts a backhander on net. Rask fights it off.
10:12: Off some strong work down low by Loui Eriksson, Bergeron chops a quick shot from in tight on net. Fleury hugs the left post and eats it up.
9:41: Matt D'Agostini is taking a shift with Kunitz and Crosby.
9:02: Dupuis is skating with Sutter and Brian Gibbons.
7:42: Off a feed by Malkin, Martin booms a one-timer from the right point. Rask says no.
7:33: A mistake by Brooks Orpik leads to a Bruins' goal. Orpik tries to one-time a bouncing puck at Boston's left point but fans on the shot. Carl Soderberg pokes the puck away from Orpik carries it to the Penguins' blue line. He criss-crosses with Kelly and deals a pass to Ekrisson on the right wing. Orpik commits hard to defending Kelly and leaves Eriksson all alone. Eriksson walks in on a breakaway from the blue line and tucks a nifty backhander through the five hole of Fleury. Ouch. Put that one on Orpik. Soderberg gets the only assist. Bruins 1-0.
4:26: The Bruins get their first power play as Dupuis pinned Soderberg against the boards away from the puck. That's two minutes for interference. Zach Sill, Craig Adams, Orpik and Martin take the ice
4:17: The Bruins cash in immediately. Sill actually wins the faceoff in the right circle against Bergeron, one of the best faceoff specialist in the NHL but Martin can't clear the zone. Eriksson ends up with the puck in the right half wall and deals to Soderberg along the goal line on the right wing. Orpik vacates the slot to pursue Soderberg who flings pass to Reilly smith sneaking into the open slot. Smith taps the feed off the glove hand of Fleury and into the net. Orpik's rough night continues. The Penguins have a streak of 18 consecutive successful penalty kills snapped. Soderberg and Eriksson get assists. Bruins 2-0.
3:10: Sing-song "Flerrrr....Eeee...." chants begin.
1:19: Gibbons flings a wrister from a bad angle on the left wing. Chara blocks it.
0:30: Letang hits David Krejci to the ice in the neutral zone. Play is blown dead for a hand pass. Letang limps to the bench and heads to the dressing room.
0:00: End of period. Bruins 2, Penguins 0.
-The Penguins dominated the first 10 minutes of that period. The Bruins withstood an early offensive assault, took advantage of a few mistakes and earned a 2-0 lead.
-If the Penguins are trying to take advantage of any of the Bruins' issues on the blue line, we haven't seen any evidence of it.
-Brooks Orpik had a pretty rough first period. He needs to be better.
-We're not sure we've ever realized how well Soderberg passes the puck.
-The Penguins lead the game in shots on net, 10-5.
-The Penguins lead in attempted shots, 19-10.
-Kunitz, Crosby and Bergeron each lead the game with two shots.
-Martin leads the game with 8:38 of ice time.
-Chara leads the Bruins with 7:56.
-The Penguins lead the game in faceoffs, 13-10 (57 percent).
-Crosby is 6 for 10 (60 percent).
-Bergeron is 5 for 9 (56 percent).
-Miller and Johnny Boychuk each lead the game with two blocked shots.
20:00: Letang is on the ice to start the period.
19:37: Off a rush from the right wing, Eriksson flings a wrister on net. Fleury eats it up.
19:23: The Penguins' second line strikes again. Malkin chips a puck from the right point to Jokinen low along the right half wall. Jokinen deals a forehand pass to Neal who has a little space in the slot. Neal takes it on his forehand and lifts a a lethal wrister by Rask's blocker. What a nasty little shot. Jokinen and Malkin get assists.
18:58: A wrister by Torey Krug from the left point is blocked by D'Agostini.
18:31: Kunitz whacks a slapper from the left wing over the cage.
18:24: Kunitz gets another chance above the right circle and wires a wrister on net. Rask eats it up.
16:48: Bartkowski flings a wrister from the left point. Fleury kicks it out despite traffic.
16:16: Letang rips a wrister from the circle. Rask kicks it away.
14:36: Sill flings a wrister from the right wing wide to the far side.
14:18: Hustling in the right circle, Crosby leans down and rips a wrister wide on the far side.
13:22: After Orpik misplays a puck at his own right point, Jarome Iginla snaps off a wrister from the right wing. Fleury eats it up.
10:48: Lucic tries to tee up Engelland with a big hit into the left wing boards of the Penguins' zone. He makes contact but Engelland braces for the hit and it's Lucic who takes a tumble.
10:41: Dupuis releases a wrister from the high slot. It deflects on net and skids on net. Rask fights it off but is caught swimming in his crease. Kunitz and Crosby each have chances at the rebound but Chara clears it out of danger. Rask owes Chara a beer.
10:10: Off their "quick draw" faceoff play in the left circle, Malkin wins a draw back to Neal who whips a wrister wide to the far side.
9:45: Jokinen lifts a wrister from deep on the right wing. Rask fights it off.
9:21: The great Joe Vitale hustles into the Boston zone, steals a puck from Bartkowski on the end boards and deals it to Sill in the left circle. Sill takes a tumble and fans on his shot.
8:17: Chara stokes a slapper from the right point. Dupuis gets a stick on it and deflects the puck wide.
6:12: Neal swoops behind the net, emerges in the right circle and deals a puck to Maatta above the left circle. Maatta rips it on net. Rask challegnes and snags it despite traffic.
5:38: Gibbons moves in with space on the right wing and lifts a wrister on net. Rask challenge and kicks out Gibbons' five hole shot.
4:45: Bergeron wires a wrister from above the left circle through traffic. Rask fights it off.
4:14: Malkin lugs the puck from his own zone, to the Boston zone. He avoids a few Bruins defenders, swoops behind the cage and deals a backhanded pass from the left corner to Neal rushing up the left wing. Neal uncorks a big one-timer off the crossbar. The puck deflects to Niskanen at the right point. Niskanen hurries to shoot the rebound back on net. It hits a stick and deflects away.
1:58: Dougie Hamilton hammers a one-timer from the right point. Fleury kicks it away.
1:25: Matt D'Agsotini chips and chase a puck up the left wing. He gets a step on Hamilton who simply shoves him to the ice. No penalty.
1:10: D'Agostini booms a slapper from the left half wall. Rask fights it off.
0:56: A shot/pass by Orpik from the left point is blocked in front.
0:04: Marchand flings a backhander from the right wing. Fleury smothers it.
0:00: End of period. Bruins 2, Penguins 1.
-That was a pretty boring period of hockey. There wasn't much in the way of sustained pressure by either squad.
-The Penguins played much better that period than in the first. They cut down on their mistakes and had the bulk of quality scoring chances.
-The Malkin, Neal, Jokinen line was flying that period. They have seemed to take advantage of not getting the top defensive matchups tonight and are creating some scoring chances.
-The Bruins seem more than comfortable with the prospect of trying to win this game, 2-1. They don't seem too eager to open things up.
-The Penguins have a 21-13 lead in shots on net.
-The Penguins have a 41-26 lead in attempted shots.
-Kunitz leads the game with seven shots.
-Eriksson leads the Bruins with three shots.
-Martin leads the game with 17:09 of ice time.
-Chara leads the Bruins with 15:13.
-Faceoffs are even, 21-21 (50 percent).
-Bergeron is 10 for 16 (63 percent).
-Crosby is 8 for 15 (53 percent).
-Sill, Bartkowski, Boychuk and Miller each lead the game with two blocked shots.
18:14: Neal snaps off a wrister from the right circle. It hits a stick and deflects over the cage.
16:54: Paille snaps off a wrister from the left wing. Martin blocks it and is hobbled a bit.
16:51: Paille tries to settle the rebound in the right wing corner and is dropped on a shoulder check by Orpik.
15:51: Bartkowski booms a slapper from the right point. It hits off the end boards. Fleury corrals the rebound and freezes play.
15:35: Off a spinning pass by Jokinen in the slot, Malkin leans down and puts a one-timer on net from the right circle. Rask fights it off.
14:58: Jokinen lifts a wrister from the left circle. Rask fight sit off.
14:43: Another chance for Neal. He gets a little space in the right circle. Boychuk is able to get a stick on puck and partially blocks the shot which Rask eats up.
13:18: Letang whips a wrister from the left circle. Rask fights it off.
12:50: Dupus is on with Gibbons and Sutter. Off some strong work down low by Gibbons, Dupuis lifts a wrister from in tight. Rask fights it off.
12:37: Eriksson leads a rush up the right wing, criss-crosses with Bergeron and leaves a drop pass. Bergeron lifts a wrister which Fleury traps against his chest.
12:23: Hamilton whacks a slapper from the right point. It hits a body in front.
10:43: Sutter lifts a wrister from the right wing. Rask snags it.
9:08: A wrister by Martin from the right point deflects out of play.
8:51: James Neal strikes again. Boychuk fumbles a puck above his own left circle. Jokinen takes it off him and tucks a nifty little pass to Neal right at the left faceoff dot. In one motion, Neal whips another lethal wrister by Rask's glove hand. It clinks off the cross bar and into the cage to tie the game. Jokinen and Niskanen get assists. Bruins 2, Penguins 2.
8:27: Using Orpik as a screen, Smith lifts a wrister from the right circle wide to the far side.
7:52: Sill gets away with a trip on Miller behind the Boston net.
7:20: Letang has two shots from the center point blocked.
7:05: Off a feed by Begeron, Bartkowski lifts a wrister from the left circle. Fleury eats it up.
7:03: The Bruins attempt their own "quick draw" faceoff play. Bergeon beats Crosby in the Penguins' left circle. Marchand is behidn Bergeron and whips a quick wrister on net. Fleury fights it off.
6:24: Bartkowski flings a writer through traffic from the left point. Fleury boots it out.
5:53: Off another faceoff win by the Bruins in the Penguins' left cricle, Hamilton chips a wrister from the left point. Fleury boots it out. Iginla is there fro the rebound but Fleury says not that a swll.
5:25: Dupuis blocks a wrister from Chara in the slot. Hamilton collects the rebound at center point and snaps off a wrister which deflects juuuuust wide.
5:15: The Bruins establish some offensive zone presence and retake the lead. Krejci deals a a pass from the right corner to Chara at the right point. Chara lifts a pedestrian wrister at the cage. Crosby is position in the right cirlce and waves his stick at it. He ends up defecting it by Fleury's shoulder on the near side and into the cage. Ouch. That's an own goal for Crosby. Chara gets credit while Krejci and Lucic get assists. Bruins 3-2.
3:55: Niskanen steals a puck in his own zone, reverses direction and leads a rush up to the Bruins' zone. He deals a pass to Jokinen on the right wing and drives to the net. Jokinen taps a puck back to him. Niskanen re-directs it on net. Rask fights it off.
1:30: Neal takes a shift with Crosby and Kunitz.
1:10: The Bruins ice the puck. With the faceoff in the Bruins' zone, Fleury is pulled for an extra attacker. The Bruins call timeout to get a breather.
0:52: Letang caries the puck to the Boston blue line and loses it. Chara chips it down ice.
0:13: martin whacks a sapper from the right point wide of the cage.
0:00.3: Whoa!!!! What!?!? The Penguins tie the game? How? Neal wrists a puck from the left half wall. It hits Kunitz in the chest. Kunitz settles the puck and backhands by Chara. Crosby is sneaks just to the right of the blue paint and whack the puck into the cage before the clock hits all zeros. A video review confirms the puck went in before the clock expires. Kunitz and Neal get assists. Bruins 3, Penguins 3.
0:00: End of game. Bruins 3, Penguins 3.
-The Penguins have a 29-24 lead in shots on net.
4:44: Iginla rushes through the neutral zone, gains the Penguins' blue line, dekes by Letang and lifts backhander on net. Fleury eats it up.
4:27: Krug whips a wrister from the right point wide of the net.
4:26: The Bruins dominate puck possession in overtime and earn the win. From center point, Krug deals a pass to Eriksson above the right circle. Eriksson deals it back to Krug above the left circle. Krug moves in with an acre of ice to work with and booms a slapper from the left dot by Fleury's glove hand on the far side. What a shot. Marchand and Eriksson each get assists. End of game. Bruins 4, Penguins 3.
-First things first, Dan Bylsma offered an update on Beau Bennett:
-As we stated in the pregame notes, Bennett's previous wrist injury during his college career was his right wrist. During Friday's game against the Islanders, he was waving and flexing his left hand/wrist during his last shift:
-Onto a slightly less depressing subject, how do you assess this game? The Penguins controlled most of it, ended up stealing a point, then promptly gave another point away. It's an odd game to assess.
-If you want to be a glass half-full type of person, the Penguins' second line finally took advantage of getting easier defensive matchups. The Penguins' second line of Evgeni Malkin, James Neal and Jussi Jokinen primarily saw shifts against the patchtwork defensive pairing of Matt Bartkowski and Johnny Boychuk. The result was two pretty goals by Neal. The Sidney Crosby/Chris Kunitz/Pascal Dupuis line saw a lot of the Zdeno Chara/Dougie Hamilton pairing as well as shifts against Patrice Bergeron and was limited most of the night.
-If opponents want to wipe out the Penguins' top line, fine, they'll just have to live with giving more opportunities to the Penguins' suddenly hot second line.
-For the glass is half-empty crowd, The Penguins made mistakes and the Bruins took full advantage of them. A rough first period for Brooks Orpik equated to two Bruins goals. A complete lack of puck possession led to a brief overtime period. The Penguins didn't make many mistakes, but when they did, they paid a price.
-It wasn't as drastic as Saturday's game in Montreal, but this was another "one more save" game. The Bruins got one more save from Tuukka Rask than the Penguins got from Marc-Andre Fleury. The overtime goal by Torey Krug, admittedly a talented offensive defenseman, was preventable. Fleury had a clean look at the cage and was completely blown away.
-On the other end of the rink, Rask didn't exactly steal goals but he made the save he had every reasonable expectation to make. He earned this win while facing a ton of shots.
-For the first time in a while, special teams failed the Penguins. They failed to capitalize on their lone power play and allowed the Bruins to score a goal on their only chance with the man advantage. Before tonight, the Penguins had killed the previous 18 power plays they had faced.
-Orpik's play was rough in the first period but he can be forgiven for a rare night off. He's been one of the team's most consistent players most of the season.
-The lack of attempt by the Penguins' coaching staff to try and short shift a bit or do more a little more mixing and match of lines in order to avoid bad defensive matchups was puzzling. Other than switching Dupuis with Matt D'Agostini between the first and third lines, the Penguins did little in the way mixing line combinations. As a result, Zdeno Chara spent most of the nigh on the ice with Crosby.
-The third line came through with another dud performance. That group in is various combinations throughout the season, has been a considerable non-factor most of the season.
-How dangerous did Loui Eriksson look? He's such a complete, all around player. There aren't many holes in his game.
-News flash. Rask is still pretty good.
-We're not sure if the Penguins keep records for latest goal in regulation. The only other goal we can think of which would be in the conversation for that record, if it exists is Bill Guerin's score against the Bruins in 2009-10 when he beat goaltender Tim Thomas with 0.4 remaining in regulation.
-Crosby's goal tonight came with 0.3.
-The Penguins had a 31-24 lead in shots on net.
-The Penguins led in attempted shots, 55-49.
-Kunitz led the game with six shots.
-Eriksson led the Bruins with five shots.
-Kris Letang led the game with 25:27 of ice time.
-Chara led the Bruins with 25:38 of ice time.
-The Bruins had a 32-31 edge in faceoffs (51 percent).
-Bergeron is 14 for 21 (67 percent).
-Brandon Sutter was 8 for 16 (50 percent).
-Dupuis, Zach Sill, Hamilton, Bartkowski, Boychuk, Brad Marchand and Kevan Miller each led the game with two blocked shots.
-Neal moved past Zarley Zalapski and John Chabot for 62nd place on the franchise's all-time scoring list. Neal and Zalapski each have 135 points but Neal (68) has more goals than Zalapski (33). Chabot has 134 points.
-The Penguins lost an overtime or shootout game in the regular season for the first time since a 3-2 road loss to the Flyers, March 18, 2012. Scott Hartnell scored with 0.9 remaining in overtime to win the game: