“It’ll take a miracle now.”
Those damning words were uttered by NESN Bruins play-by-play man Jack Edwards the last time the St. Louis Blues visited TD Garden, as the final seconds ticked away Jan. 19, 2009 with Boston ahead 4-3.
Everyone, especially Blues fans, knows what happened next. With less than a second remaining, David Backes batted a rebound past Tim Thomas to tie the game. St. Louis won in a shootout. Here’s a look at the final 30 seconds of that game:
That game started the Blues on their march from near the bottom of the conference into the top eight by season’s end. Of course, the loss didn’t prevent the Bruins from still sitting atop the Eastern Conference when the regular season closed. But it still stung them, especially Blake Wheeler, who missed that would-be game-clinching empty-netter.
It’s not exactly a miracle, but it’s fortuitous for the Bruins that NHL schedule-makers did them a favor by having them play tonight after their disappointing one-third of an effort in Washington last night. The Bruins have no time to sit around and lick their wounds after their rally from 3-0 down to tie turned into a 5-3 defeat.
This might be the first dose of adversity for these Bruins, as they’re coming off a bitter loss on the road to a top team and now return home to play the next night against a Blues teams that’s well-rested after spending Friday evening in Boston. This is their first set of North American back-to-back games, and the Blues have won five in a row behind their red-hot goaltender Jaroslav Halak.
The puck drops at 7 p.m. The Bruins’ schedule only gets tougher from here, with games against Pittsburgh and Montreal on next week’s docket, so Boston has to be determined to iron out any problems that arose Friday night as soon as possible. The Bruins can’t wait around for miracles, and they shouldn’t need any.