For as much criticism as Coach Claude Julien gets for babying his top line and not changing them at all, he doesn't get nearly enough credit for the more minor changes. Those minor changes won the game for Boston last night.
After total domination by Chicago in the first period, outshooting the Bruins 19-4, Julien shuffled the bottom lines around to try and get something going. He moved Chris Kelly and Danielle Paille up to the third line with Tyler Seguin, making the fourth line Rich Peverley centering Shawn Thornton and Kaspars Daugavins.
Trailing 1-0 in the second, the new Speed Line came out with a purpose. None of the guys on that line are particularly physical, but they try. That effort is what lead to the game tying goal 14:58 into the period. Paille dogged Patrick Sharp behind the Blackhawk net and came away with the puck. He skated around the glove side of Corey Crawford for the wraparound that bounced off of Crow's leg and into the slot where Chris Kelly crashed down after he saw the turnover. A little flick of the his wrist sent the puck over Crawford and into the back of the net, knotting it up at one.
That was the momentum swing that Boston needed to carry them for the rest of the game.
After a scoreless third with multiple chances by both teams, they headed into yet another overtime. The extra period was all Bruins all the time. Wherever they had lost their legs in the first period, they seemed to get stronger minute by minute throughout the game until they looked to be the stronger team. Jaromir Jagr's snake bitten shot mad an appearance as he rang yet another wrister off the post behind Crawford in the OT. As Gerry Cheevers once said, hitting the post just means you missed the net.
Well, that may not be entirely true.
After Brandon Bollig misplayed a puck in his own zone trying to get it out, Adam McQuaid pinched down the wall and poked the biscuit to Seguinand the speed line went back to work just as they were about to go off on a change. Paille and Kelly wheeled around and drove straight to the net, with Paille on the left and uncovered. Seguin put the puck right on Paille's tape who had time enough to settle the puck after Crawford made his slide from left to right and still snap it off the inside of the far post and in to end it. The Bruins bench exploded and poured onto the ice, relieved that they will not be going back to the Hub down 0-2.
0-2 is actually what the Bruins should have been down after the first period, though. Patrcik Shap had sent a seeing eye wrister through a mass of humanity in front of Tuukka Rask, who may have been interfered with, and put the Hawks up one. Michal Handzus was the subject of the non call interference, twice knocking Tuukka down in the crease while play continued. If the Bruins had a beef with that goal, the Blackhawks certainly had one on one that was disallowed.
Just a minute after the first goal, Jonathan Toews had a wraparound on Rask stopped, but Marian Hossa shoved Rask and his pads into the goal with his stick on a jam play. The play was whistled dead and the puck dribbled across the goal line after the fact, much to the dismay of Joel Quenneville on the bench. The Hawks players on the ice gathered around the back of the net screaming and pointing at the puck on the inside to no avail.
Whether or not either goal should have been counted can go back and forth forever, but the fact is the series is tied up and heading back to Boston for Monday. Lets hope the B's can grab a win in regulation for all our productivity's sake.