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Zdeno Chara credits Peter Bondra with hat trick celebration 01.17.11 at 4:36 pm ET
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Zdeno Chara hadn’t been holding his breath for his first career hat trick, but he was able to breathe a sigh of relief after becoming the fourth defenseman in Bruins history to accomplish the feat.

“You’re always kind of thinking about how it would be nice to have that kind of a game in your career, to say, ‘Hey I’ve done it, I had a hat trick,’ but for myself, it took 14-15 years,” Chara said. “I’m not expecting to have another one anytime soon.”

Regardless of how frequently he tallies three goals in a game, his teammates were glad to see him do it for the first time, including another long-tenured Bruin who just recently had their first hat trick.

“That’s our leader,” Patrice Bergeron said of Chara. “That’s our captain. That’s why he’s probably the best defenseman in the league.”

Chara celebrated the hat trick by gesturing to the crowd with his glove, waving on the fans to toss their hats. He admitted after the game that he saw Peter Bondra of the Capitals do it after notching three goals against him when we was with the Islanders, and that he kept the move stored in case he ever had the opportunity.

“I kind of remembered [thinking], ‘If I ever get a hat trick, I want to do the same.’ I thought it was pretty cool,” Chara said of seeing Bondra celebrate.

Just as Chara took notice of Bondra, his Bruins teammates got a kick out of their captain’s celebration.

“Yes,” Milan Lucic said with a laugh when asked if it was the most interesting goal celebration he’d seen. “That’s all I’m going to say. Yes.”

Read More: Peter Bondra, Zdeno Chara,
Bruins win easily behind Zdeno Chara hat trick, Tim Thomas shutout 01.17.11 at 3:33 pm ET
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Zdeno Chara had his first career hat trick, while Tim Thomas recorded his seventh shutout of the season in a 7-0 Bruins win over the Hurricanes. Chara joined Bobby Orr, Ray Bourque and Glen Wesley as the only Bruins defenseman to record three goals in a game.

Cam Ward was the bad guy when he shut out the Bruins at the Garden back on Nov. 26, but the Bruins were able to chase him from the game in just 11:26 thanks to goals from Mark Stuart and Chara.

For Stuart, it was his first goal of the season and a nice way to make his return from a broken hand and dislocated finger that had kept him out for 18 games. Chara would add power play goals in the first and third periods after Justin Peters took over for Ward.

The Bruins also got goals from Gregory Campbell and Patrice Bergeron in the second period. Bergeron, who was named the NHL’s No. 2 star of the week earlier in the day, now has 12 points over his last seven games. Michael Ryder scored his 14th goal of the season when he redirected a Dennis Seidenberg shot past Peters.

Peters didn’t do himself any favors in the game, as he drew penalties for holding and roughing in the second and third period, respectively.

The two teams will square off again Tuesday night in Carolina.

WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS

- The Bruins are proof that goals come in waves. When Patrice Bergeron scored 13 seconds after Gregory Campbell in the second period, it marked the ninth time this season that the Bruins have scored two goals in less than a minute. It was the third time they’ve done so in the last three games, as they did it last Monday in Pittsburgh and on Saturday against the Penguins.

- His production on the night was obviously overshadowed by that of another Bruins defenseman, but Adam McQuaid had his first-career multi-point game, and it took him less than 12 minutes to accomplish it. On the day, five Bruins defenseman had at least a point, with Johnny Boychuk the only one to not register one. Boychuk had an even rating.

- Tim Thomas continues to put up monster numbers, and he now ahas noter blanking in the books. He’s already surpassed his previous career high of five shutouts in a season, but with seven thus far, the question is whether he ends up doubling it.

Thomas didn’t find himself facing the most energetic offense, though he did come up with big saves on Eric Staal in the first period. His save on Jeff Skinner in the second led to a quick breakout and, eventually, a beautiful pass from Shawn Thornton to Campbell for a B’s goal. With Thornton’s assist (his fourth), he jumped back out in front of Thomas in their assist race. Thomas has three helpers on the season.

WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS

- Milan Lucic thought he’d scored his 17th goal of the season when he beat Ward at 9:15 of the first, but he was in fact touching up on a delayed penalty on Zdeno Chara. It wasn’t exactly costly for the B’s, as Chara returned to the ice following the penalty and scored on a 2-on-1.

Lucic has now gone 12 straight games without a goal, though he grabbed an assist on Chara’s third goal.

- This was a game in which just about as much went right for the Bruins as possible. All four lines had strong showings, and the defense and goaltending were stout. They even won the fisticuffs battle, as McQuaid pounded Troy Bodie in the third period. There will be plenty of games for the bad to stand out, but there simply wasn’t much of it Monday.

Bruins add to lead in second 01.17.11 at 2:40 pm ET
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The Bruins continued piling on in the second period against the Hurricanes, striking twice in 13 seconds to establish a 5-0 lead entering the third.

Shawn Thornton set up a falling Gregory Campbell in front of the net for the center’s sixth goal of the season. Blake Wheeler also picked up an assist on the play.

Patrice Bergeron continued his hot streak, as he scored his 15th goal of the season immediately following Campbell’s. Bergeron now has 12 points in his last seven games, and 21 in his last 16.

The B’s goals weren’t the extent of Hurricanes netminder Justin Peter’s bad day. He took a holding penalty when he grabbed onto Blake Wheeler’s leg late in the period.

The B’s are outshooting the Hurricanes, 29-23.

Bruins chase Cam Ward early, lead 3-0 after one 01.17.11 at 1:45 pm ET
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Generally, defensemEn can be responsible for their own goaltender being chased from a game, but the Bruins blueliners did the damage in the first period, ending Cam Ward‘s day early and piling it on from there. The B’s lead, 3-0.

Mark Stuart, who had missed the last 18 games due to a broken right hand and a dislocated finger, go the Bruins with a slapshot from the point at 7:56. It was his seventh goal of the season.

Milan Lucic though he’d made it 2-0 when he took a pass from David Krejci and fired it past Ward, but after celebration and confusion, it was deemed that he was touching up slashing call on Zdeno Chara. The B’s defenseman made up for it when he took a pass from Adam McQuaid out of the box and brought it up for a 2-on-1 with Mark Recchi. The B’s captain kept the puck and scored on a wrist-shot to make it 2-0.

Ward was yanked following the goal, though Chara would break in replacement Justin Peters with a power play tally at 15:58.

McQuaid picked up assists on the first two goals, giving him his first career multi-point game. It is Chara’s ninth two-goal game.

Patrice Bergeron named No. 2 star of the week 01.17.11 at 12:40 pm ET
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Bruins center Patrice Bergeron was named the No. 2 star of the week for the week ending on Jan. 16. The 25-year-old was runner-up to Hurricanes winger Jussi Jokinen, who had four goals and three assists in three games for Carolina during the week.

Bergeron also had seven points during the week, scoring four goals and adding three assists over a four-game stretch in which the B’s went 3-1-0. On the season, Bergeron has 14 goals and 20 assists for a team-leading 34 points in 44 games.

Coyotes netminder Ilya Bryzgalov was named the third star.

Read More: Ilya Bryzgalov, Jussi Jokinen, Patrice Bergeron,
Tim Thomas to start for Bruins vs. Hurricanes, Milan Lucic and Mark Stuart to play 01.17.11 at 12:07 pm ET
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Bruins coach Claude Julien said prior to Monday’s matinee vs. the Hurricanes that the team will see the return of Milan Lucic and Mark Stuart to the lineup.

Lucic has missed the last three games with an undisclosed injury, while Stuart has been out since Dec. 7 with a broken hand and dislocated finger. The team sent defenseman Matt Bartkowski to Providence on Sunday in order to activate Stuart, who had been placed on injured reserve a week prior.

Julien added that Tim Thomas will start in goal against the Hurricanes. Thomas was in goal in the team’s Nov. 26 matinee against Carolina, when he allowed three goals in a 3-0 Bruins loss.

Read More: Mark Stuart, Milan Lucic, Tim Thomas,
Bruins activate Mark Stuart, return Matt Bartkowski to Providence 01.16.11 at 11:21 pm ET
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The Bruins announced Sunday night that they have activated defenseman Mark Stuart from injured reserve and sent Matt Bartkowski to Providence.

Stuart has been out since suffering a fractured hand and dislocated finger on Dec. 7 against the Sabres. He had initially hurt his right hand three days earlier in Toronto.

Bartkowski played two games for the Bruins after being summoned on two separate occasions to fill in for Adam McQuaid and Andrew Ference on Monday and Saturday, respectively. The 22-year-old had a minus-1 rating over his two games, both of which were against the Penguins.

In 34 games in Providence this season, Bartkowski has four goals and eight assists for 12 points.

Read More: Mark Stuart, Matt Bartkow,
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