Not too many highlights to write home about in the first period - Bruins had two power plays and generated a few chances, but didn’t convert. Buffalo led the first with 10 hits to Boston’s four, and have blocked eight shots to Boston’s one blocked shot. One area where the B’s are strong - yet again - is in the faceoff circle, winning 60-percent of the draws through the first. Patrice Bergeron (no surprise here) has won six of seven faceoffs.
There were, however, a few “oh” and “ah” moments, as described below….
Thornton vs. Scott
In a much anticipated “tough” match-up between the B’s and Sabres, the first pair to drop the gloves was Shawn Thornton and Buffalo newcomer John Scott - just 2:53 into the first period, right before a faceoff in the neutral zone.
Thornton couldn’t get much leverage on Scott - who has 6 inches and 53 pounds on No. 22 - as he was leveraged right into the boards by the 6-foot-8 forward. Not the B’s tough guy’s best bout, but I’m not sure I’d want to square off with someone six inches taller and over 50 pounds heavier….
Thornton went right to the room after serving his major in the penalty box, and did not return to the bench, playing only 16 seconds of the period. Scott - who was called for elbowing later in the period - has only seen 27 seconds of ice time.
The B’s got two PP chances, and with the absence of Bourque in the lineup tonight (healthy scratch), Rich Peverley has seen a bit more time on the man-advantage (1:53), manning the left wing near the half-wall, a spot that usually requires the forward to attack. He already has two shots on goal, to go along with his four last game vs New Jersey and season-high five against Carolina on Tuesday. (Read more about the third line trying to find offensive results here).
Birthday boy Tyler Seguin (turning 21 today) has three shots on goal, but no score to show for his speed yet.
The Bruins best chances have come with Milan Lucic parked right in front of Ryan Miller. No. 17 has registered two shots but his placement right in front of Miller’s line of sight has caused more than two opportunities.
With around five minutes to go in the period, Nathan Horton sent a feed from the right faceoff circle that skirted right through the crease and just missed Lucic’s stick. Then, with nearly 3:00 left, Lucic planted himself in front and nearly punched in the B’s first tally of the night.
Buffalo’s best chance came from Jason Pominville, when he flew down the right wing and fired a shot that Tuukka made a right pad save on and rocketed the rebound through the high slot and out of trouble.
Stay tuned to live updates on Twitter @NHLBruins ^CS and check back for Second Period notes….