After another 30 minutes of play, they stamped a 2-1 victory that pole-vaulted them into first place in the Atlantic Division. They now boast a 14-6-1 record with 21 games down and 61 yet to come.
Their 29 points also constitute the biggest bushel in the NHL’s Eastern Conference, although a whopping eight Western Conference teams have already broken the 30-point plateau.
Boston’s regal position in the conference standings shares a critical link with their No. 1 netminder, Tuukka Rask. Among qualified league leaders, Rask is third with a 1.61 goals-against average and second with a .946 save percentage.
Not only do those numbers, much like his team’s record, exceed expectations, but they also go heavily hand-in-hand with the record given that, discounting empty-netters, the Bruins have been involved in 12 one-goal decisions.
Furthermore, if you remove empty-netters, overtime strikes and shootouts from the equation, Boston has scored twice or less in 13 games.
The skaters have combined for plenty of plus points, which has also been vital to the winning causes, but Rask bears the fewest follies at the quarter mark of 2013-14. Accordingly, Boston’s goaltending sits a cut above all other fundamental aspects of its game on the grading scale.
Here is a more detailed capsule of the Bruins’ first-quarter performances in the way of offense, defense, goaltending and both sides of the special teams spectrum.
Unless otherwise indicated, all statistics for this report were found via NHL.com and are through games of Tuesday, Nov. 19.