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Picture perfect: Jaromir Jagr scores only goal, Tuukka Rask spotless in 1-0 win 04.04.13 at 9:26 pm ET
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Jaromir Jagr (left) had the first laugh on Martin Brodeur (30), scoring a goal when a pick went off his skate and past Brodeur. (AP)

Jaromir Jagr was the main attraction but Tuukka Rask stole the show.

Rask turned aside all 40 shots while Jagr scored the only goal in his Boston debut as the Bruins edged the New Jersey Devils, 1-0, Thursday night at TD Garden. The win was an important one for the Bruins, who improve to 24-8-4. Boston has 52 points and kept pace with first-place Montreal in Northeast Division. The Bruins trail the Canadiens by just one point heading into another showdown north of the border Saturday night.

Jagr finished with a team-leading five shots in 19 shifts, which including 19 minutes, 12 seconds of ice time. He also had one hit, one blocked shots and one giveaway in his first game with the Bruins since being acquired from Dallas on Tuesday. One game after allowing 47 shots on net in a 3-2 win over Ottawa, the Bruins allowed the Devils to fire 40 shots.

Fans were ready for the debut of Jagr early on Thursday night at the Garden. As he took the ice for the pre-game skate, fans cheered him, the last Bruin to take the ice for warmups.

Jagr’s debut included a standing ovation in his first shift, the third overall of the game for the Bruins. As was the case in the morning skate, Tyler Seguin centered Jagr’s line with Jagr on the right wing and Brad Marchand on the left.

His first period was active, if not productive. He was on the ice for six shifts, totaling five minutes, 58 seconds. He had two shots and a blocked shot but the game was scoreless after 20 minutes. The Devils, after getting outplayed in the first four minutes of the game, dominated the final 15 minutes, outshooting the Bruins, 17-6, for the period.

While all eyes were on No. 68 every time he stepped on the ice, Rask was the bigger story as he made big save after big save, including a pair of back-to-back right pad saves on Alexei Ponikarovsky and David Clarkson from the low slot midway through the period. Minutes later, Rask turned away Adam Henrique on blocker save.

The Bruins and Jagr finally broke through in the second period as a centering pass from Marchand ricocheted off Jagr’s left skate and through the five-hole of Martin Brodeur just 80 seconds into the period for a 1-0 Boston lead. It was the 640th goal of Jagr’s career and 18th against Brodeur in 64 career meetings.

Six minutes later, the Bruins and their fans got a good look at another reason why management went out and acquired the 41-year-old veteran. When David Clarkson took an interference penalty, Jagr was placed on the power play for the full two minutes. He was stopped by Brodeur in close on a backhander and spent a majority of the time behind the net, though he did have one giveaway on the man advantage. Jagr was on the first power play unit with Zdeno Chara, Nathan Horton, Marchand and Seguin.

The Bruins applied serious pressure in the final two minutes of the second but Brodeur turned away Gregory Campbell and Marchand to keep it a one-goal game.

Rask kept up the sterling play in the third, highlighted by another big pad save on Andy Greene with just under eight minutes left in regulation. Greene broke through the Bruins defense and had a clean look but Rask stopped the wrister in close.

The Bruins are off Friday before leaving for a Saturday night date with the Canadiens at the Bell Centre in Montreal. For complete coverage of Jagr’s debut from the Garden from DJ Bean and Mike Petraglia, visit the Bruins team page at weei.com/bruins.

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Jaromir Jagr couldn’t be happier to be with Bruins: ‘At the end, it’s going to be great’ at 12:21 pm ET
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New Bruins superstar Jaromir Jagr, acquired in a Tuesday trade with the Stars, says he’s not a young kid anymore but he’s very happy to be with the Bruins.

At 41, Jagr figures to re-energize a team that again has aspirations of lifting Lord Stanley’s Cup in June.

So, it’s no surprise to find Jagr hasn’t given serious thought to retirement.

“I don’t know,” he said. “I love to play. If I feel healthy and I feel like I can play on some kind of good level, I want to keep playing, if I can get an opportunity to play. I’m not going to saying anything [like] I’m retiring because I’m not ready for it. I love the game too much, so if I’m not good for the NHL, I’m going to go and play in the Czech League or somewhere else but I still love the game and like everybody else, if you love something, you just don’t want to let it go. You hold it ’til you can.”

Is there enough left in the tank?

“I believe where there is love there is no time,” Jagr said with a smile.

“I [don't have] a no-trade clause so I guess wherever Dallas got the best opportunity, they took it. But I’m happy about it. You don’t ask questions, you just go to play. Through my whole hockey career, I was pretty lucky to play where it was always good for me. I know it’s going to be good, maybe not from the start but at the end, it’s going to be great.”

Jagr feels like Boston is similar to Philadelphia in 2012, a team that was a legitimate Stanley Cup contender. Jagr helped the Flyers beat the Penguins in the first round before losing to the Devils in the Eastern semifinals.

“I’ve changed so I kind of like it,” Jagr said. “I don’t mind it at all. I was in the same situation in Philadelphia last year. I was so happy when I see the other guys play with me, my teammates, doing so good. When they did interviews [in Philadelphia], they said, ‘Jagr helped us.’ So, that’s what makes me also happy, not just scoring goals but he can help. I know I can help. There’s a lot of young guys. I’ve learned a lot of stuff through my hockey career. I played for 23 years and I’ve played with so many great players and I’ve learned so much stuff.

“You can always learn. No matter how old you are, you can always learn. If someone thinks they know everything when he’s 25, he’s lying to himself or he’s dumb. So, you can always learn and I’m here to teach the guys and tell them what I have to go through and make their hockey life easier.”

For more, visit the Bruins team page at weei.com/bruins.

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Claude Julien: Jaromir Jagr is ‘coming to help us, he’s not coming to save us’ 04.02.13 at 11:15 pm ET
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Clearly, the Bruins felt a positive buzz from the acquisition earlier in the day of Czech superstar and future hockey hall of famer Jaromir Jagr. The Bruins went out, fired 50 shots on net and beat the Senators, 3-2, at TD Garden.

But Bruins coach Claude Julien made it very clear that he’s not expecting the 41-year-old player to save the Bruins, just help them, much in the same way Mark Recchi helped Boston to a Stanley Cup in 2011.

“Well, there’s no doubt he’s going to help us,” Julien said. “And I think that’s the key word, he’s coming to help us, he’s not coming to save us. That’s what people have to understand. He’s a great player, and he still is a great player, but at the same time, if we expect to watch him do the work we’re not going to be going anywhere.

“We need our team to play better and he’s certainly going to help our team be better. I like the acquisition – a big strong guy, he’s hard to knock off the puck around the net area, in the corner; he does a great job. To me, he seems to suit our needs and what we’re all about. Again, I know he’s happy to come here and we’ll certainly be happy to have him in our lineup because he’s going to help in a lot of areas.” Read the rest of this entry »

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Patrice Bergeron leaves game, Bruins offer no update at 10:30 pm ET
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Patrice Bergeron left Tuesday's game. (AP)

Patrice Bergeron left Tuesday’s win over the Senators after colliding with Ottawa’s Colin Greening early in the second period and did not return. Following the game, Claude Julien offered no update on his condition.

Replays showed that Bergeron hit his head on Greening’s elbow/forearm while Greening was attempting to shoot in the Bruins zone. Rich Peverley took Bergeron’s place on the second line with Brad Marchand and Tyler Seguin.

Bergeron, who has had three concussions in his career, left the ice and went down the tunnel following the collision. Bergeron’s last concussion came in 2011 against the Flyers.

Though Julien had no update on Bergeron and wouldn’t talk about the prospect of playing without him, Bruins teammates expressed concern for the reigning Selke winner.

“I haven’t talked to him yet, but we all know what kind of guy and what kind of player he is,” David Krejci said. “We don’t have to talk about it. It sucks, but I hope it’s nothing serious and he’s going to be back in the lineup soon.”

For more, visit the Bruins team page at weei.com/bruins.

DJ Bean contributed to this report.

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Shooting gallery: B’s fire 50 shots, beat Sens in key division battle at 9:36 pm ET
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Tyler Seguin scores in the first period to give the Bruins a 2-1 lead. (AP)

The Bruins found the perfect way to celebrate the acquisition of superstar Jaromir Jagr.

Nathan Horton scored with just under 10 minutes left in regulation and the Bruins managed 50 shots on goal in a 3-2 win over the Ottawa Senators Tuesday night at TD Garden. For Horton, who could be facing demotion to the team’s third line with the Jagr addition, scored in his fourth straight game. Back-up goalie Anton Khoudobin made his second straight start and stopped 45 of 47 shots he faced to earn the win, his eighth of the season against three losses. The two teams combined for 97 shots on goal.

The win was big for the Bruins, who improved to 23-8-4 and reached 50 points on the season. They are just one point behind Montreal for the division lead and now six points up on third-place Ottawa in the division.

The only concern from the game came early in the second period when Patrice Bergeron collided with Colin Greening and did not return.

In an up-tempo first period, the two teams combined for 40 shots, 21 by the Bruins, including five by Tyler Seguin. It was Seguin who gave the Bruins the lead, snapping a 1-1 tie when he took a perfect feed from Brad Marchand and fired a shot into the net vacated by goalie Robin Lehner.

The game didn’t start off well for Boston as a Dennis Seidenberg turnover left the puck all alone for Colin Greening in front of Khudobin. Greening’s backhander beat the Boston goalie far side just 2:48 into the game for a 1-0 Ottawa lead. The Bruins countered just 50 seconds later when David Krejci redirected a Zdeno Chara slap shot from the high slot past Lehner. The Bruins got the go-ahead tally from Seguin just 61 seconds later.

The two teams continued their fast play in the second period but couldn’t put the puck in the net.

A bizarre turn of events and instant replay led to a tie game just two minutes into the third. Khudobin appeared to make a spectacular sprawling save on Andre Benoit‘s shot from the slot. The puck appeared to bounce off the crossbar and back into play. But after a stoppage, the officials were called over to review the play and replays showed that the puck disappeared under the crossbar and hit the top of the net, resulting in a game-tying goal.

With 13 minutes left in regulation, Seguin grabbed a loose puck and skated in alone on Lehner but lost an edge after not being able to get a clean shot on the Senators goalie. Three minutes later, Lehner turned aside Rich Peverley on a 2-on-1 break. But the Bruins kept working and got their break when Dougie Hamilton crushed Erik Condra with a big, clean hit in the Bruins zone. That led moments later to a scrum in front of Lehner and a goal from Horton at 10:21, putting Boston on top, 3-2.

The Bruins had to hold on for final 32.3 seconds as Johnny Boychuk was called for interference in front of Khudobin. With their net empty, the Senators had a 6-on-4 for the final half-minute but could not score.

The Bruins are off on Wednesday – trade deadline day in the NHL – and will get the services of newly acquired Jaromir Jagr on Thursday for their next game, a home date with the Devils.

For more from DJ Bean and Mike Petraglia from the Garden, visit the Bruins team page at weei.com/bruins.

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Claude Julien acknowledges Jarome Iginla trade rumors swirling 03.27.13 at 11:55 pm ET
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Bruins coach Claude Julien acknowledged the trade rumors involving Calgary Flames veteran superstar Jarome Iginla were swirling around his team after the Bruins blew it two-goal lead in the third period and lost 6-5 to the Montréal Canadiens in a shootout Wednesday night at TD Garden.

“I don’t know if it affected the game, but I know it’s present,” Julien said. “You know, there’s a lot of rumors circling around our team. I called a couple players into my office just to talk before the game about certain things and they were a little jumpy – they were all expected the worst news. And it had nothing to do with trades more than talking about the game. So it’s present and it’s pretty obvious why.

Julien also would not offer specific comment on two controversial calls against the Bruins late in the third that eventually ended in the game-tying goal, unlike earlier in the month when he accused the Canadiens of “embellishment” in drawing penalties in a win at TD Garden over the Bruins.

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Trade loss: With Jarome Iginla rumors swirling, B’s blow lead, lose shootout to Habs at 10:37 pm ET
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Brad Marchand helped the Bruins erase an early 2-0 hole against the Canadiens. (AP)

Brendan Gallagher scored the decisive goal in the sixth round of the shootout as the Canadiens beat the Bruins, 6-5, in overtime Wednesday night at TD Garden. Gallagher also scored once in the third period before the Canadiens tied it with 8.2 seconds left in regulation. The Bruins had a pair of two-goal leads but couldn’t hold on, as they fell a point behind the Canadiens in the Northeast Division. The Bruins went 0-for-6 in the shootout while Gallagher was the only Canadien to score in six tries.

Patrice Bergeron scored a goal and added three assists while Tyler Seguin added a goal and two assists

With his team battling for the top spot in the Northeast Division six floors below, Bruins president Cam Neely went back and forth on the ninth floor, shadowed by security. This led to speculation about whether the Bruins might be ready to pull the trigger on a major trade for Calgary Flames star Jarome Iginla, who was scratched from his game Wednesday night, the first game the 35-year-old has missed since Feb. 2007.

For a second straight game, Claude Julien juggled his lines at the start before reverting midway through the game. And, for the second straight game against a division rival, the Bruins came out flat in the first period. They were held without a shot for the first eight minutes of the game.

With the exception of Seguin, the Canadiens generated most of the energy on the ice in the opening 20 minutes. It paid off for the visitors when former Bruin Michael Ryder got enough on a snap shot from the low slot and beat Tuukka Rask just 4:15 into the game for a 1-0 lead.

The Canadiens appeared to be in the driver’s seat when arch-nemesis P.K. Subban blasted a slap shot from the right point through a screen and past Rask 2:53 into the second period for a 2-0 lead.

Despite falling behind for the fourth straight game, the Bruins did not panic. And as they did on Monday, when they also fell behind by two goals at the start to the Maple Leafs, the Bruins woke up just in time.

It was a rush from Seguin that got things going 30 seconds after the Subban goal. Seguin came flying down the right wing and fired a shot off the crossbar. The puck came down in front of Bergeron. He couldn’t put it in the open net but Dougie Hamilton was in the right place at the right time and drilled a one-timer from between the circles past Price and the comeback was on.

Less than four minutes later, with Julien again rejoining his regular lines, Marchand netted the game-tying goal by battling for position in front of Price and knocking the puck past the Montreal goalie. Marchand, who started the game on the third line with Rich Peverley and Jordan Caron, was reunited with Bergeron and Seguin. It was Seguin who won the battle in the corner and fired the puck in front of the net for Marchand.

After Lars Eller hauled down Shawn Thornton on a rush down the left wing, the Bruins went on the power play. With 14 seconds left on the man advantage, Bergeron potted his 10th of the season to put the Bruins up, 3-2. The play was set up when Zdeno Chara fed Torey Krug, called up earlier in the day. Krug fired a shot from the right point. The shot deflected off Rich Peverley in front and onto the stick of Bergeron who finished it off.

With the Garden crowd still buzzing, David Krejci fed Nathan Horton on a mini-break and Horton beat Price 35 seconds later for a 4-2 lead. After spotting the Canadiens the game’s first three shots in the opening seven minutes, the Bruins outshot Montreal 26-8 and finished with a 26-11 advantage after 40 minutes.

Price was pulled in favor of Peter Budaj to start the third. Andrew Ference drew a hooking penalty and the Bruins had a power play but could generate little momentum. Then moments later, Ryder added his second of the night, drawing the Canadiens within one, 4-3, with just over 16 minutes still left in regulation.

With Hamilton in the penalty box for holding, Budaj kept the Canadiens in the game with a huge save on Gregory Campbell on a shorthanded breakaway with 10 minutes left. Seguin then gave the Bruins huge insurance with a backhander to beat Budaj with just over eight minutes left, putting Boston up, 5-3. The Canadiens made it a one goal game again as the Seguin goal was being announced as Brendan Gallagher got a lucky bounce off the mouth Dennis Sidenberg and beat Rask with 7:42 left. The Bruins killed off their first five shorthanded situations, including an elbowing call on Chara with 4:40 left in regulation.

But a delay of game on Aaron Johnson with 1:27 left, led to a 6-on-4 with Montreal’s empty net. A shot from Subban deflected off the stick of Chara past Rask with 8.2 seconds left to tie the game. Andrei Markov was credited with the goal The Bruins got a power play with 1:20 left in overtime when Alexei Emelin was called for a hooking penalty. Krejci had one final chance to win it but Budaj smothered the shot from the right circle two seconds before the end of overtime.

The Bruins are off Thursday and Friday before visiting Philadelphia for a matinee with the Flyers on Saturday. For more, visit the Bruins team page at weei.com/bruins.

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