BOSTON (CBS) — The Boston Bruins are off to Florida for the next few days following a dominating 3-0 win over the Washington Capitals at the TD Garden on Thursday night.
The Bruins’ lowered the hammer defenively against Washington, holding the Caps to just 16 shots on the night. 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Bruins’ play-by-play man Dave Goucher joined Toucher & Rich on Friday, and said Thursday night was textbook defense by the B’s.
“I try to track decent scoring chances for each team, and I think I wrote down three, maybe four chances for the Capitals all night,” said Goucher. “That was textbook for them. You’d be hard-pressed to see them play a better game defensively.”
The Bruins made a pair of moves at Wednesday’s trade deadline, acquiring defensemen Andrej Meszaros from Philadelphia and picking up Corey Potter off waivers, but they weren’t the impact moves most fans wanted. Goucher doesn’t think either player will have much of an impact, but they do add some much-needed depth. That depth will be important should if health becomes an issue down the road.
“They’re going to have to stay very healthy (to win a Stanley Cup),” said Goucher. “Defensively, Meszaros and Potter come in, and I’m not sure, if everyone stays healthy on the blueline and if Matt Bartkowski plays as well as he did last night, I don’t know if Meszaros and Potter will play ahead of anybody.”
“I had hoped they were going to be able to do a little more than they were able to do, but none of these trades are in a vacuum,” said Goucher. “You’ve got all the different teams trying to accomplish a lot of different things, and you have salary cap implications, which is a significant part of it. When you look up front, they’re going to have to stay very healthy if they’re going to make a deep run.”
Forward Loui Eriksson scored a goal against Washington Thursday night in his return after missing a game with a “heel infection.” He was rumored to be involved in trade talks around the deadline, and has had a tough go during his first year in Boston. But if he can find a good rhythm on Boston’s third line, he could make a big impact in the playoffs.
“I think right now if you had to give him a grade it would probably be incomplete given the injuries,” Goucher said of Eriksson. “He hasn’t really been as effective as we expected him to be. I don’t know what was going on over in Russia, where he got cut getting in and out of a cold tub, but you hope he’s a guy that can be an impact player down the stretch.”
“Their third line last season never really, it always seemed like it was in a state of flux. Now (Carl) Soderberg looks to be comfortable playing center with (Chris) Kelly and Eriksson on the wing,” added Goucher. “If they can stay healthy you hope they can have an impact, but specifically for Eriksson. That’s why they brought him here; they felt he could play in their top six or, at least on this deep team, in their top nine (forwards).”