Bruins beat Coyotes for seventh straight win
|03.13.14 at 10:19 pm ET|
The Bruins won their seventh straight game and reclaimed first place in the Eastern Conference with a 2-1 victory over the Coyotes Thursday at TD Garden.
Boston jumped out to a 2-0 lead on goals from Zdeno Chara and Jarome Igina in the first period. The two teams then played a very quiet second period in which the Coyotes had two shots on goal and the Bruins had three.
For the second straight day, Tuukka Rask had a shutout broken up in the third period, as a Lauri Korpikoski tally at 8:14 of of the third got the Coyotes on the board.
Dougie Hamilton returned to the lineup after serving as a healthy scratch for the previous two games. With Hamilton back in, the Bruins made Torey Krug a healthy scratch, marking the first time Krug has missed a game this season. Andrej Meszaros remained in the lineup, playing primarily on the left side for the first time since being acquired by the B’s last Wednesday.
The B’s will next play Saturday, when they host the Hurricanes at the Garden.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS
– Rask didn’t have much trouble handling both games of a back-to-back, as he followed Wednesday’s 35-save performance by blanking Phoenix Thursday.
One of Rask’s saves Thursday came on a breakaway in which Shane Doan got behind Zdeno Chara and Hamilton in the second period, making it the fourth breakaway he has faced and stopped (Tomas Plekanec missed the net Wednesday) in the last two days.
The closest call Rask encountered in the first period was due to some bad luck, as Rask made a blocker save in the first period and pushed the rebound off of Dougie Hamilton, causing the puck to bounce back to the net. Rask was able to reach back and sweep the puck out in time.
He also came up big as the Bruins killed off a third-period penalty to Carl Soderberg. Rask has now allowed just five goals over his last four starts.
– Chara has never had a 20-goal season in his career (he had 19 in 2008-09), but he’s got a pretty good shot at it this season. Thursday’s goal was the 16th of the season for Chara. The Bruins have 16 games remaining.
– Thursday’s win was Claude Julien‘s 300th as Bruins coach. He sits 61 wins away from Art Ross for the most in franchise history.
WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS
– The Bruins had only three shots on goal in the second period, though they allowed only two to the Coyotes. That’s right: There were five total shots on goal in the second period. One of Phoenix’ second-period shots came on a Doan’s breakaway.
– Matt Bartkowski was assessed a boarding minor after an unnecessary shove from behind on Jeff Halpern in the second period. Bartkowski didn’t necessarily push him hard, but it was definitely enough to send Halpern into the boards head-first.
– The lack of power plays continues for the Bruins, as they had just one man advantage Thursday.