Despite what they said, overturned goal certainly deflated Bruins in Game 4 loss

Charlie McAvoy's first NHL was overturned on a coach's challenge. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports)

Charlie McAvoy’s first NHL was overturned on a coach’s challenge. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports)

The Bruins once again found themselves on the wrong end of a one-goal final on Wednesday, this time by a 1-0 score. It was the same score that favored the Bruins for all of a few seconds at one point, too.

At the 10:49 mark of the second period, Bruins rookie Charlie McAvoy fired a puck through traffic and beat Craig Anderson. Enough for the first goal of his NHL career (though a deeper review may have credited the goal to Noel Acciari, who appeared to get a stick on the puck), the goal jumped the Bruins out to a 1-0 edge in a game that 100 percent had the feel of a ‘first team that scores wins’ kind of contest.

But in a game where scoring was at a premium, Senators coach Guy Boucher was not going to let that goal stand without a fight.

So in came his coach’s challenge. It was there that it was determined that Acciari was offsides about 20 seconds before the goal was scored, and off came the tally.

“Yeah, it definitely sucks. When that happens you’re happy when it’s on the other side, but not when it happens to you,” Patrice Bergeron said. “It’s the rule and I guess they made the call and we still have to find a way that’s the bottom line.”

With a heavy round of boos rained down on the referees for the second game in a row, the score returned to 0-0.

And the Bruins never quite recovered.

From the non-goal on, the Bruins were outscored 1-0, and put just three more shots on goal to end the period, and opened up their third period with just two shots in the opening six minutes or so of action. After that, the Bruins went almost a full 10 minutes without a shot on goal before they were whistled for a too many men on the ice penalty, and were held to just five shots by the end of the third period, with all of the shots that followed coming with their net empty and a 6-on-4 advantage.

“It’s disappointing when those things happen. You have a tough time scoring, a low scoring game,” Bruins interim head coach Bruce Cassidy said. “But, our guys on the bench were good. They said, listen, let’s be resilient here and let’s keep pushing. So, I don’t think it was a huge factor in the game. It might have gave them a bit of a life thinking they got a break. But, for us, like I said, I don’t think it deterred us from what we wanted to do other than the obviously disappointment of losing a goal.”

But what was said on the bench versus what was done on the ice told two drastically different stories.

“We had the high tip from Noel [Acciari] – was obviously a pretty good play for us. The offsides challenge – that really has no bearing on the play – calls that back,” Bruins forward David Backes noted. “I think that for some reason made us pause rather than realize that we broke the mold there and had the recipe for success and to keep doing that.”

Officially one loss away from the summer, the B’s know their luck has to flip if this series is to return to Boston on Sunday.

“We’ll start by winning one game, and that’s all you’ve got to focus on, winning one game, and then come back home and win another one, and then it’s Game 7,” Bruins netminder Tuukka Rask said after the loss. “So, we don’t have to make it any more complicated than it is, but we’ve just got to make sure that we play a heck of a game on Friday.”

Staying onside may help, too.

Blog Author: 
Ty Anderson