With the way the Bruins were playing — and the way the Hurricanes were playing — it should have been an easy afternoon for the home team. After all, for a lengthy period of Saturday’s matinee — 22:43, to be exact — goaltender Chad Johnson could have taken a nap, or read a book, or run to the concession stand for a hot dog, as Dustin Pedroia once did in spring training.
Carolina didn’t land a shot on goal during that time, and yet the Bruins weren’t able to capitalize on their 15 consecutive shots, staying tied through more than a period’s worth of dominant play. And after they pulled ahead in the second, they didn’t pull away, and it seemed inevitable the Hurricanes would come back.
They did, with a Patrick Dwyer goal off a shorthanded breakaway tying the score with 8:50 left in regulation.
Still, the Bruins managed to get the two points when David Krejci beat Cam Ward at 1:28 of overtime for a 3-2 win.
The Hurricanes entered the game with three straight losses, including on Monday to the Bruins, but managed to score the first goal — on a power play, no less. The Hurricanes came in ranked 28th in the NHL with the man advantage (11.9 percent), and were going up against the league’s second-ranked penalty-killing unit in the Bruins (86.8 percent). Andrej Sekera shot one through a screen of Zdeno Chara and Brad Marchand at 5:53 of the first, just minutes after he had been helped off the ice after blocking a shot from Shawn Thornton.
The Bruins answered at 14:49 of the first, also on the power play, as Chara got his fourth goal of the season. All have come on the power play. The play started with Milan Lucic taking a feed from Torey Krug and skating in on Ward. Lucic’s shot bounced off Ward’s right shoulder, and Chara was able to pick up the loose puck and put it in the net.
Boston took the lead at 13:31 of the second period as Reilly Smith backhanded home a rebound of a Carl Soderberg shot. But the Bruins couldn’t hold that lead.