The Canadiens defeated the Bruins 4-1 Thursday night at TD Garden, and with the win Montreal is 4-0-1 in its past five games against Boston.
The Bruins, who entered the game 5-0-1 in their past six, were beaten by the Canadiens in almost every aspect of the game. Turnovers plagued the Bruins, and the Canadiens capitalized on those mistakes.
Defensively, Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask didn't get much help, so Bruins coach Claude Julien decided to pull the starter at 11:54 of the second period after Montreal gained a 3-1 lead. Rask played 32 minutes and allowed three goals on 18 shots. It was the fourth time this season Rask has been pulled from a game. The Bruins are 0-4-0 this season when using two goalies.
Speaking of goaltending, Montreal started backup Peter Budaj, who finished with 34 saves.
The Canadiens came out buzzing and gained the early lead on a pair of turnovers by the Bruins. Montreal defenseman Alexei Emelin's slap shot from the right point found its way through traffic and beat Rask to give the Canadiens a 1-0 lead at 2:16 of the first period. Montreal added to its lead later in the period when the Bruins' Daniel Paille had his pass intercepted in the offensive zone. The Canadiens quickly broke out and created a 2-on-1 in transition, and Max Pacioretty finished with his 23rd goal of the season, beating Rask to the five-hole at 15:38.
Boston finally answered when Dougie Hamilton was credited with his fifth goal of the season. His one-timer from the right point redirected off the skate of Canadiens' Andrei Markov and snuck past Budaj.
Similar to the game on Dec. 5 in Montreal, the second period was an awful one for the Bruins.
For a team that had a total of 18 goals in the previous three games, the Bruins did nothing in the third period as Montreal easily skated to the win.
Save of the game: With the Canadiens holding a 2-1 lead late in the first period, Rask made a huge save and received a standing ovation from the 17,565 in attendance. The Bruins were caught deep in the offensive zone when Montreal created a 2-on-1. It appeared as though the Canadiens' David Desharnais was about to add to the lead, but Rask made a right-pad save to keep Boston's deficit at one goal.