This game was tremendously disappointing. Should’ve been a three-minute major late.
Of course you’re here to read about the Sound Tigers, not my weird-rulebook excitement. But then, this game was probably tremendously disappointing for you, too, then.
Anything could have happened in that first period. Shots were 14-7 Bruins and it felt like the score could’ve been about 16-10. Posts, back-and-forth rushes, a bit of everything. (Though: “The first two (Providence goals) were point shots,” Brent Thompson said. “We’ve got to get in lanes.”)
Then: failed clear by both defensemen, rush: 3-1. Turnover in the neutral zone, rush: 4-1 after two.
Power-play goal. Four-on-four goal that should’ve been on a three-minute major power play for Providence. That’s it.
The game story will go on about the inexperienced defense, which at least gets Scott Mayfield back tomorrow if there aren’t other changes but probably loses C.J. Ludwig, handed a match penalty for a hit to the head, and may not have Loic Leduc, who blocked a shot, missed most of the last 50 minutes and was limping around afterward. (Re-evaluated, day-to-day, sing along. But at least he was walking.)
There’s what might’ve happened in the first, but there’s also what did happen thereafter, which was the Greatest Show on Ice pretty well taking over.
“We had our chances. We just didn’t score on our chances,” Thompson said. “It still comes down to way too many turnovers. That means controlling the puck. If the (defensemen) have it, use each other. If the forwards have it, puck-protect, cycle.
“Support is key, whether we’re in the offensive zone, the neutral zone, the breakout.”
So, as tweeted: Two men have worn No. 63 for the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. And both of them received a match penalty in their Bridgeport debuts. Lukas Sutter got his against Portland at home on Jan. 31, 2015, cross-checking Justin Hodgman (who’d received a match penalty at the same time).
There was all manner of rule book fun in the last five minutes, the match penalty (it looked like Burroughs hit Blidh first, then Ludwig hit him, and at least on a first look, tough to see that clearly) maybe the least of it. Colby Cave was called for an instigator, going after Ludwig. All of this came at 15:21 of the third, which means:
— (a) by Rule 19.4, which we saw the other day in that Grand Rapids-Chicago game, because Cave had two minutes and Ludwig had five to serve, and the full power play couldn’t be served in regulation time, it was supposed to go up as a three-minute power play for the Bruins. It did not. Massive bummer.
— (2) According to Rule 46.22, Cave, an instigator in the last five minutes, gets a one-game suspension if all holds up.
— (iii) Justin Hickman served Cave’s two minutes, and when he came out at 17:21, he stepped right into Colin Markison. At first I thought it was interference because he was partly still in the box, but now I’m wondering if it was just garden-variety interference.
Which, seriously, if they’d three-minute-majored it, all moot.
Not joking: Thought Frank Vatrano had at least one more shot than the 11 he got credit for. He’s 25-11-36 in 23 games. It’s like pee-wee numbers. And seriously, Alex Khokhlachev is still here?
Elsewhere, Raffi Torres says he’s sitting out the rest of the year.
Westport’s Michael Paliotta got the call to Columbus.
Prescout, sorta: For Sunday. Albany’s off tomorrow. (It did play Wednesday.) Mike Sislo, slacker, didn’t score a goal. (No stoppages in overtime, apparently: Three seconds of carry-over power play from regulation.)