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Bruins drop second straight, lose to Penguins 02.04.12 at 3:29 pm ET
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The Bruins’ struggles continued Saturday as they fell to the Penguins, 2-1, at TD Garden.

They have now lost back-to-back games for the first time since dropping contests to the Jets and Panthers on Dec. 6 and 8, respectively.

Evgeni Malkin scored his 28th goal of the season when he beat Tim Thomas on a rebound with the Penguins on the power play late in the first period. Bruins nemesis Matt Cooke extended the Penguins’ lead in the third period before a Joe Corvo wrist shot from the point got the Bruins on the board.

Thomas made 26 saves in the losing effort, while Marc-Andre Fleury made 28 saves for the Penguins.

The Bruins will travel to Washington to face the Capitals Sunday.

WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS

– The first two penalties called against the Bruins were debatable. The power play on which Malkin scored in the first period probably never should have happened, as Rich Peverley appeared to lay a clean check on Malkin, but he was called for a slash. Benoit Pouliot was penalized in the second period for a questionable hook on Cooke.

– Though they entered Saturday with a league-best 2.5 goals per game, the Bruins’ offensive production has come to a screeching halt. Just one goal for the B’s over the last two games is obviously their lowest total over a two-game stretch this season. The B’s have now gone 10 games in a row without leading through two periods.

– A great stat from NESN’s Douglas Flynn, who pointed out that 14 of the Bruins’ 20 shots through the first two periods came from defensemen. That’s a clear indication of a team not getting enough chances up front, though Corvo’s one-timer on the power play came from in front of Fleury. Just as alarming as the ratio of shots is the fact that not one came from the first line of David Krejci, Milan Lucic and Peverley through 40 minutes. Krejci finally registered his line’s first shot on goal in the final minutes of the game.

– Pouliot is no stranger to taking bad penalties, and he took perhaps his worst of the season when he went off for high-sticking Brooks Orpik just seconds after Corvo got the Bruins on the board in the third period. Daniel Paille tripped Kris Letang with 25 seconds remaining on Pouliot’s penalty, but Letang went as well for closing his hand on the puck.

WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS

– Corvo’s goal ended a stretch of 119:36 without scoring for the Bruins. The goal was also Corvo’s third of the season, so while he has struggled mightily to produce the way he has in seasons past (he had 11 goals last season), perhaps Saturday’s tally can help him get some confidence back.

– The B’s survived another injury scare. Dennis Seidenberg left the ice in the third period after a hit from Joe Vitale and missed about half a period before returning late in the game. The Bruins just got Andrew Ference back from a suspension and had an injury scare with Adam McQuaid Tuesday, so they can ill-afford another question mark on the blue line.

Nathan Horton rides stationary bike, Bruins recall Jordan Caron from Providence 02.04.12 at 1:00 pm ET
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Bruins forward Nathan Horton is progressing in his recovery from the concussion he suffered last month, as coach Claude Julien told reporters prior to Saturday’s game that the right wing rode the stationary bike for the first time on Friday.

Horton has not played since being hit by Flyers forward Tom Sestito on Jan. 22. It his second concussion since last June, as he suffered a severe concussion in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup finals.

The Bruins also recalled forward Jordan Caron, though Julien told reporters the 2009 first-round pick will not be in the lineup Saturday.

Caron has been sent to the AHL six times this season, and in 17 games, he has four goals and nine assists for 13 points. The 21-year-old has been hot of late, with two goals and an assist over his last three games.

Read More: Jordan Caron, Nathan Horton,
Bruins-Penguins Live blog: Slumping B’s looking to right the ship 02.04.12 at 12:59 pm ET
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Bruins-Penguins Live Blog

Cam Ward blanks Bruins, whose struggles continue 02.02.12 at 9:27 pm ET
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The Bruins turned in their latest poor showing and as Carolina took a 3-0 contest and swept the four-game season series between the teams for the first time in franchise history.

The Hurricanes got goals from Eric Staal and Tuomo Ruutu in the first and second periods, respectively. Picking up the shutout for Carolina was Cam Ward, who won all four games against the Bruins this season. Tuukka Rask took the loss.

The Bruins came out and outshot Carolina, 22-8, in the first period, but Staal’s first-period tally and stronger second and third-period efforts propelled the Hurricanes, who entered Thursday last in the Eastern Conference, past the B’s.

With the loss, the Bruins’ are now 4-4-1 over their last nine games, their worst such stretch since the first month of the season. They will return to action Saturday when they host the Penguins at TD Garden.

WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS

– The Bruins have now allowed three or more goals in five consecutive games. Prior to the current stretch the team is currently on, the longest stretch of games in which they allowed three or more goals was two. If the 4-4-1 record of late doesn’t say it enough, the Bruins have been well off the mark lately.

– A sensationally horrific stat pointed out by the Boston Globe’s Kevin Paul Dupont, Thursday marked the ninth consecutive game in which the Bruins entered the hire period without the lead. Boston has been the league’s best third-period team this season, but they have to know that they can’t count on a big effort in the final 20 minutes to get them two points each time out.

Speaking of the third period, the Hurricanes outscored the Bruins, 8-4, in the third period in the four-game season series. That’s saying something.

– In too many ways, the game was reminiscent of the teams’ second meeting this season on Oct. 18, when the Bruins lost their cool late in the game and lost, 4-1. The Hurricanes had David Krejci outnumbered in front of Ward a little more than halfway through the third period, but that’s no excuse for Milan Lucic to show up late to the party grabbing Stall from behind and taking a roughing penalty. The Bruins are a tough, passionate team, but the passion that comes out when they know defeat is near is the wrong kind.

– For the second consecutive game, Patrice Bergeron’s line was a minus-2. Tyler Seguin still leads the NHL with a plus-32 rating, but that will go away fast if his line continues to allow goals at their recent clip.

WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS

– While Thursday’s showing (once again) was not a 60-minute effort, the B’s at least came out with a better start than they had in games past. The team’s 22 shots on goal in the first (though they came with very few scoring opportunities) period was the most the team ties the third period of Jan. 10’s game against the Jets for the most shot they’ve had in a single period this year.

– The Bruins survived an injury scare. Johnny Boychuk’s stick went into his midsection after taking a hit from Tuomo Ruutu in the seconds that led up to Staal’s goal. Boychuk left the ice in pain and went down the tunnel following the goal. He did not return to the bench for the rest of the period, but he was present at the start of the second period.

– Rask kept them in the game. Ruutu’s goal wasn’t Rask’s finest moment, but the Finnish goaltender kept the contest close in the second period when the Bruins couldn’t keep up with the Hurricanes. Some of Rask’s brightest moments came when he went post-to-post to stop Eric Staal late in the period and when he made a sharp glove save on a Patrick Dwyer shot from the slot.

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Bruins-Hurricanes Live Blog: Tuomo Ruutu makes it 2-0 02.02.12 at 7:10 pm ET
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Bruins-Hurricanes Live Blog

Nathan Horton still not working out after concussion 02.02.12 at 12:01 pm ET
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Bruins coach Claude Julien said after the team’s morning skate Thursday that forward Nathan Horton has not progressed this week in his recovery from his latest concussion, and still is not riding the stationary bike.

“He’s still where he was a few days ago,” Julien said. “Feeling better, but not well enough right now to get to that stage of working out.”

Horton suffered the injury on Jan. 22, when he was hit by Flyers forward Tom Sestito. The play was not reviewed by the league, and Sestito was not fined or suspended for the hit.

The concussion is Horton’s second since June. Horton was famously blindsided by Canucks defenseman Aaron Rome in the first period of Game 3 of the Stanley Cup finals last season. He missed the rest of the postseason with the concussion.

Read More: Nathan Horton, Tom Sestito,
Adam McQuaid feeling better, expected to be in Bruins’ lineup vs. Hurricanes 02.02.12 at 11:55 am ET
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After missing Wednesday’s practice with a lower-body injury, Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid was on the ice for Thursday’s morning skate and hopes to play Thursday night against the Hurricanes at TD Garden.

“I felt good this morning,” McQuaid said after the skate. “I’m not sure exactly if there’s been a decision made, but I felt good this morning.”

Said coach Claude Julien: “As far as we know, he should be ready to go, but we’ll probably leave it at game-time decision. He looked good this morning, and we anticipate he’s going to play.”

McQuaid caught his skate in a rut late in the third period against the Senators on Tuesday, and said that though a part of him was concerned he may have suffered something more severe, he’s feeling better now.

“There’s always a little bit of that concern,” McQuaid said. “You’re not sure how your body will react to different things, but I’m pretty happy with how I felt today.”

McQuaid will also see the return of his defense partner in Andrew Ference, who will return from a three-game suspension Thursday night.

Read More: Adam McQuaid,
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