When it comes to the NHL Winter Classic, the score of the game, in this case the Montreal Canadiens beating the Boston Bruins 5-1 on an icy Gillette Stadium field in Foxboro, isn’t as important as the event itself.
It was the 8th Winter Classic and a first for both the Habs and the Bruins, two team somehow, hopelessly, trying to catch up with Washington in the Eastern Conference but mostly trying to make sure they end up in the playoffs. The attendance of 67,426 made for a beautiful setting to one of the greatest spectacles in all of sports, which usually looks better on Television and photos than watching it live at the stadium. Not because of the cold, but because of the distance and viewing comfort.
But it’s part of an event you’re proud to say you’ve been to. Even if the Bruins recorded a loss, there’s something bigger than that each year on January 1, although they might not feel that way when it’s time to count up your wins and losses and try to see who makes the playoffs. When it comes to that, the Canadiens are simply too fast, too good in terms of skill and tactics, for the Bruins to keep up with at the moment when the two teams are on the ice together.
Matt Beleskey scored Boston’s only goal to open the third period, but before and after it was all about Montreal, with David Desharnais opening the scoring, Paul Byron and Brendan Gallagher adding more woe in the second period and the finish coming from Max Pacioretty and another one for Byron. Gallagher and Pacioretty also picked up assists, while Mike Condon had a good day defending the goal, making 27 saves on the 28 shots he saw coming his way.