Last season the Bruins played Nashville once. Hannu Toivenen started the game and the Bruins lost 5-0 in Tennessee. Last night at the Garden, two 55 point teams played very good hockey, and the Bruins came away with two points. Throughout most of the game, the two teams were evenly matched. Tim Thomas led the way for the Bruins with 37 saves, and Glen Metropolit had two great goals. Meanwhile Nashville played well, but not well enough.
The first period was scoreless. Both Tim Thomas and Chris Mason made some incredible saves to keep it scoreless. Things started heating up in the second period. Towards the middle of the period, with the game still scoreless, J.P. Dumont barreled into Tim Thomas. Thomas took exception and roughed him up, then some Bruins defensemen did the same. The so called captain of the Predators, Jason Arnott, was also sent to the box for Unsportsmanlike conduct. With him and Dumont (goalie interference) in the penalty box, the Bruins started a long 5 on 3 power play. Thirty-two seconds later, David Krejci's pass perfect pass to Marco Sturm in front of the net led to an easy goal by Sturm. The Predators, however, tied it up with under a minute left in the period when Alexander Radulov capitalized on a mistake by Denis Wideman.
Tied 1-1 in the third, Andrew Ference turned the game around. Five minutes in Ference put a huge
hit on an unsuspecting Predator. Scott Nichol took exception to the hit and started throwing punches at Ference. Ference took on the challenge and gave Nichol a beating. Ference right fist connected with Nichol over and over again until Nichol finally went down. Nichol got in a couple, but was no match for the
The Bruins were sparked. Under a minute later, Glen Metropolit put the moves on a defenseman and shot the puck in the net. It was a great goal. Metro got his name on the scoresheet again when he put an amazing shot into the top of the net. Thomas remained solid and the Bruins won 3-1. Thomas's 93% save percentage is still the best in the league.
After 50 games the Bruins have 57 points. At this point last season the Bruins had just lost to Buffalo and had a poor 22-24-4 record with 52 points.