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Bruins return Frank Vatrano to Providence 03.16.16 at 11:31 am ET
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Frank Vatrano

Frank Vatrano

The Bruins returned forward Frank Vatrano to Providence on Wednesday, two days after he was recalled on an emergency basis.

Vatrano, a sharp-shooting left winger who has scored 31 goals in 31 games for Providence in his first professional season, was brought up for the start of the Bruins’ California road trip as insurance should one of Boston’s forwards have been unable to play. David Krejci was one player whose status was in question, but Krejci played and had two points (a goal and an assist) in the Bruins’ 3-2 loss to the Sharks on Tuesday.

Vatrano has played 30 games for Boston this season, scoring six goals and adding an assist for seven points.

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5 things we learned as Bruins fall out of 1st place with loss to Sharks 03.16.16 at 12:46 am ET
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The Sharks handed the Bruins their first regulation loss since the trade deadline. (USA Today Sports)

The Sharks handed the Bruins their first regulation loss since the trade deadline. (USA Today Sports)

The Bruins did something Tuesday night that they hadn’t done since the trade deadline: lose a game in regulation.

The start to Bruins’ California road trip proved to be a disappointing one, as they fell to the Sharks, 3-2, on a night when the Panthers regained the top spot in the Atlantic Division. The Bruins are 5-1-2 since the trade deadline.

Despite the Sharks dictating much of the game, the teams entered the third period tied at two goals apiece before a Jimmy Hayes penalty for an illegal check to the head of Justin Braun set up what would be the game-deciding power play goal for the Sharks.

The Panthers, who beat the Canadiens on Tuesday night, now sit one point ahead of Boston with 87 points on the season. Florida also still has a game in hand, as the B’s have played 71 games to the Panthers’ 70.

The Bruins will continue their road tip this weekend with a back to back that sees them face the Ducks Friday and Kings Saturday.

Here are four more things we learned Tuesday:

KREJCI HEALTHY ENOUGH

David Krejci played Tuesday after missing Monday’s practice with an undisclosed ailment. He was healthy enough to make some major plays, as he banged in a rebound off a David Pastrnak shot at 11:26 of the first period, but that was the top of the iceberg for the veteran center.

After Loui Eriksson forced a turnover from Brent Burns during a Sharks power play that Krejci intercepted in the neutral zone, Krejci send a quick backhanded pass behind his back to spring Eriksson on a breakaway for a shorthanded goal. With a goal and an assist, Krejci had his first multi-point performance since Feb. 20.

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Bruins recall red-hot Frank Vatrano from Providence on emergency basis 03.14.16 at 4:58 pm ET
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Frank Vatrano

Frank Vatrano

The Bruins recalled left wing Frank Vatrano from Providence on an emergency basis Monday. Vatrano will be available to the team for Tuesday night’s game in San Jose.

The first-year pro has 31 goals in 31 games in Providence this season, including 21 goals in 21 games since being returned to the AHL from Boston in late January.

Vatrano scored six goals and added an assist for seven points in 30 games following his recall in November. The East Longmeadow native scored the game-winning overtime goal on Nov. 25 against the Red Wings had a hat trick on Dec. 18 against the Penguins, but registered just one point over his final 13 games before being returned to Providence.

In addition to his 31 goals, Vatrano has 15 assists for Providence, giving him an impressive 46 points in just 31 games.

Claude Julien told reporters in San Jose Monday that Vatrano’s recall is related to the availability of two forwards, one of whom is David Krejci. All forwards but Krejci reportedly took part in Monday’s practice, including Vatrano.

5 things we learned as David Pastrnak’s 2 goals help Bruins past Islanders 03.12.16 at 3:36 pm ET
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David Pastrnak

David Pastrnak

The Bruins will remain atop the Atlantic Division standings for at least another couple of days.

Playing their final home game before embarking on a difficult four-game road trip, the Bruins picked up a 3-1 win over the Islanders at TD Garden to add distance between them, the Panthers and Lightning in the standings, though their divisional foes still have games in hand.

David Pastrnak scored late in the second period to break a 1-1 tie and scored again in the final minutes for his second two-goal game of the season. Loui Eriksson had a three-point performance, scoring his 26th goal of the season and adding a pair of assists.

Tuukka Rask made 25 saves on 26 shots. With the win, the Bruins are now 5-0-2 since the trade deadline and 4-0-1 against playoff teams in that span.

The Bruins will head out west this week, where they will face the Sharks, Ducks and Kings before facing the Rangers in the finale of the road trip.

Here are four more things we learned Saturday:

CHARA GIVES IT UP

Zdeno Chara did not have a good game. The lowest point of his performance came in the second period when Matt Martin knocked him off the puck behind the net and stole the puck with ease. The Islanders ended up scoring on that possession, making Chara’s turnover even more costly.

Chara also negated a third-period power play when he went after Travis Hamonic following a Thomas Hickey high stick on Patrice Bergeron. Rather than the Bruins having a third-period power play with a lead, they ended up having to play 4-on-4 without their best defenseman.

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Patrice Bergeron has maintenance day as Bruins prepare for Islanders 03.11.16 at 12:38 pm ET
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WILMINGTON — Patrice Bergeron was the only player absent from Friday’s practice as the Bruins prepared to host the Islanders in the upcoming Saturday matinee.

Bergeron, who committed an ill-timed line change in the Bruins’ 3-2 overtime loss to the Hurricanes on Thursday, was given a maintenance day on Friday, according to Claude Julien.

Kevan Miller, who has missed the Bruins’ last three games since taking a hit from behind from Alexander Ovechkin last Saturday, practiced with the Bruins for the second straight day.

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5 things we learned as Bruins fall to Hurricanes in overtime but move into 1st place 03.10.16 at 9:45 pm ET
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WEEI.com Bruins postgame podcast

Though the Bruins have gotten points out of opponents like the Blackhawks, Capitals, Panthers and Lightning (3-0-1) of late, it’s been non-playoff opponents that seemingly have given them the most trouble.

Much like the Bruins struggled last Tuesday against the Flames, they were hard-pressed to score against the Hurricanes for much of Thursday’s contest in a game they would eventually lose in overtime.

An ill-timed attempted line change from Patrice Bergeron led to a Jeff Skinner breakaway in overtime. Tuukka Rask made the stopped, but Phillip Di Giuseppe got to the rebound and wheeled around to send it into the net and give Carolina a 2-1 win at TD Garden.

The Bruins now are 4-0-2 since the trade deadline. With Thursday’s point, the B’s are now in first place in the Atlantic Division. With 84 points on the season, the B’s are one ahead of Tampa Bay, though the Lightning have two games in hand and will play Friday.

The B’s will next play Saturday when they host the Islanders at the Garden.

Here are four more things we learned Thursday:

B’S FINALLY TAKE ADVANTAGE OF WARD, BUT NOT ENOUGH

Through the first two periods, Cam Ward allowed just one goal on 24 shots faced. Those numbers were not reflective of his performance.

Ward was a mess on Thursday, rarely stopping anything cleanly. The Bruins didn’t get to rebounds, however, so pucks left in front of the net by the Carolina goaltender were swept away by the defenders in front of him.

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Jeremy Jacobs to be inducted into Massachusetts Hockey Hall of Fame 03.10.16 at 6:30 pm ET
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Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs will be inducted into the Massachusetts Hockey Hall of Fame this June. Also inducted will be David A. Jensen, Stephen Palmacci and Jack Parker.

Jacobs has owned the Bruins for 41 years, overseeing the team through highs and lows that included the team’s 2011 Stanley Cup championship.

“My selection reflects the entire Bruins organization as well as the team’s true owners, its dedicated and loyal fans,” Jacobs said in a statement. “Massachusetts is a great hockey state, and we are proud to play a role in the sport’s continued growth and development. I am tremendously honored.”

Parker coached Boston University from 1973 through 2013, winning the NCAA National Championship three times.

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