We are now three games in to the preseason, and the excess of young talent the Bruins possess is becoming more and more apparent. Thursday night, it was reigning AHL MVP Kenny Agostino stealing the show with a silky move on a breakaway to defeat the Philadelphia Flyers 2-1 in overtime.
Following two hit posts by the Flyers, Danton Heinen chipped a pass to Agostino at center ice behind the defense, who faked backhand before quickly pulling the puck around a sprawled out Alex Lyon.
Agostino led the AHL with 83 points (24 goals, 59 assists) in 65 games last season; the kid knows how to put the puck in the net. With only 17 NHL games under his belt, he has not yet been given a true shot to establish himself in the league. The Bruins signing him to a one-way contract this offseason shows that they believe he is ready to make the jump.
With the news of Torey Krug expecting to miss at least three weeks with a non-displaced fractured jaw, an opportunity just opened up on defense. Bruce Cassidy mentioned Tommy Cross, Jakub Zboril, Matt Grzelcyk and Paul Postma as potential replacements, according to WEEI’s Ty Anderson. Zboril and Grzelcyk play similar styles to Krug, while Cross and Postma focus more on the defensive side.
Despite his playing style, Postma got on the board for the Bruins’ only goal in regulation. Under two minutes after the Flyers broke the scoreless tie 4:57 into the third period, Postma ripped a slapshot that found the top left corner of the net through traffic to quickly knot the game at 1-1.
The former Winnipeg Jet made a smart play out of his own end later in the game when he blocked a shot and immediately turned it up ice, leading to a three-on-one. However, his game was not perfect, and he was caught flat-footed a couple of times, including this play when Jake Voracek torched him through the neutral zone.
Tuukka Rask saw his first game action of the preseason and played the full 60+ minutes. He looked like the poised, confident goaltender that we are used to, stopping 23 of 24 shots. The goal he allowed was one that he would want back, but he was otherwise rock solid. Rask was tested on multiple occasions, including on this point-blank opportunity by Wayne Simmonds.
The Bruins finished the night 9/9 on the penalty kill, while going 0/3 on the power play. There was a total of seven slashing minors and one face-off violation called as the league tests out its new, stricter rules.
The B’s have four games remaining in the preseason and are back in action Saturday night in Detroit. The team will continue to narrow down to its final roster over the coming week.
[Photo via CSNNE.com]