Chris Kelly’s overtime blast from the top of the circle gave the Bruins a 1-0 win in game one.
I jumped off my couch when it happened; just 1:18 into overtime last night Bruins forward Chris Kelly let go a huge slap shot from the top of the left wing circle that beat Capitals goalie Braden Holtby high glove side. This play would not have been possible without a perfect cross-ice pass from Benoit Pouliot. The play also came at the expense of former Bruin, defenseman Dennis Wideman who gave Kelly all kinds of open space, and then failed to cover him once he got the puck.
This game can be a huge momentum boost for the Bruins, who now have a 1-0 series lead. On the other hand, this loss could kill the Capitals’ spirit; this was a game that they could have won and completely turned the series upside down. Fortunately they didn’t win, and will have a very hard time rebounding from this loss. The Bruins should have no problem winning this series, and I believe they will do it in five games. Washington players all had their heads down as they skated off the ice last night and this heartbreaking defeat seems to have destroyed them mentally.
The only complaint I have about the game last night is the fact that the Bruins had eight to ten quality scoring chances and only scored once. Obviously one was enough on this particular night and their defensive play was stellar, but down the road they need to make good on their opportunities more often. One goal isn’t going to cut it very often. On the defensive side, Dennis Seidenberg was unbelievable in shutting down Alex Ovechkin. Chara also played well, but it was mostly Seidenberg who held “Alex the Great” to one scoring chance, and leveled him with a huge open ice hit right in front of the benches. Overall this was a great game for the Bruins, and very important in the series. Hopefully they can continue to win and get this series over quickly.
- Jonathan Duncan