The Bruins saw their Stanley Cup title defense come to an end Wednesday night with a 2-1, overtime loss to the Washington Capitals in Game 7 of a first-round playoff series at TD Garden.
A bad line change by the Bruins proved to be the difference, as Washington’s Mike Knuble intercepted a clearing pass from Benoit Pouliout and raced up the ice with the puck early in the overtime period. Knuble put a shot on net, and the rebound was put home by Washington’s Joel Ward just 2:57 into the extra frame. The Capitals celebrated along the side boards, while a stunned Bruins crowd was forced to contemplate the end of their team’s season.
Matt Hendricks scored the game’s first goal for Washington, and Tyler Seguin scored a gritty goal in the second period for the Bruins.
17:03: And a turnover kills the Bruins. Joel Ward gets the game-winner. The defending Stanley Cup champions are eliminated.
19:06: Patrice Bergeron with a great chance in front, but his rebound attempt is blocked. Crowd thought they had a game-winner.
End regulation: Bruins were outshot, 12-6, in the third period. We’ve got sudden-death hockey in a Game 7.
2:26: Jason Chimera takes down Johnny Boychuk from behind. Two minutes for holding. Bruins power play with a chance to win.
3:58: Four minutes left in a Game 7. Both teams gassed after a furious rush. A minute to relax here.
6:44: Bruins kill it off and even get a 2-on-1 rush the other way. Great penalty kill. Building goes from hear a pin drop to loud.
9:00: Bergeron called for hooking. Two minutes. Going to be a nervous building.
9:45: Hard slap shot by Troy Brouwer is stopped by Thomas. One of his 17 saves.
13:00: Shots on goal now 27-15 in favor of the Bruins. It takes guts for the Capitals defensemen to keep getting in the way of these Boychuk shots.
15:38: A minute late on this, but no luck on the power play. Bruins now 2 for 22.
18:42: Former Whaler Roman Hamrlik called for holding the stick of Milan Lucic. Bruins power play.
END second: Much better period for the Bruins in terms of quality chances. Rich Peverley again gets in Braden Holtby’s face as time expires. Both teams trying to do the little things to gain an edge.
1:06: Fans behind the Capitals net now taunting Braden Holtby after Holtby pushes Rich Peverley in the back after the play. Peverley fakes a slash back at Holtby.
5:33, Bruins 1, Capitals 1: Tyler Seguin evens the score. Seguin worked hard in front to get free of Karl Alzner and tip the puck in after Johnny Boychuk’s shot absolutely ate up Braden Holtby. Tremendous effort from Seguin, and a great shot by Boychuk.
12:41: Benoit Pouliot feeds Chris Kelly in front of the net, but Pouliot leads Kelly a bit too much and can’t connect with Kelly’s stick. Fans wanted a penalty on the Capitals’ defenseman on the play.
15:23: Bruins are out-shooting the Caps, 13-8, but it sure doesn’t feel like it.
END first: The Bruins frittered away all but 10 seconds of their power play without success. They’re down a goal as we head to the second period. The Bruins are 1-0 this postseason when trailing after the first period. They were 8-19-1 on the season.
1:50: Jeff Schultz trips up Brad Marchand, who was skating 1 on 3. Bruins get their first power play of the game. They’re for 2 for 20 so far in the series.
8:37, 1-0, Capitals: Milan Lucic turns it over, and John Carlson puts a shot on net that appeared to be deflected, though it may have been off a Bruin. Tough break for Lucic on a puck that hopped his stick. Tough break for Thomas on the deflection. Jason Chimera gets the assist.
10:38: Bruins are really working it now. A Rajon Rondo-esque pass by David Krejci behind his back finds a cutting Tyler Seguin, but Seguin makes one too many passes. A blast from Chara eats up Holtby, but he’s able to make the save.
14:32: Some good work by the Bruins on that last shift sending bodies to the net. Shots are 4-2, Boston, and they’ve had some decent chances. It’s a positive sign that the shots aren’t being taken from the blue line.
19:20: Bruins fans chanting “Hooooltby” in an attempt to get the young Capitals goalie off his game.
Pregame: Bruins flags flying on pickup trucks in the Tip O’Neill Tunnel. Packed house at TD Garden. Game 7 starts shortly.
Mike Motteau and Jordan Caron are in the lineup for the Bruins. That means Joe Corvo and Shawn Thornton are out.