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Five from afar: Bruins 3, Rangers 2

11/17/2010

Five thoughts and observations after watching from afar as the Boston Bruins defeated the New York Rangers 3-2 on Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden:

The Bruins received goals from Milan Lucic, Tyler Seguin and Mark Recchi, while Tim Thomas made 34 saves to improve to 10-1-0 this season. Boston is 7-1-0 on the road in 2010-11. The Bruins host the Florida Panthers on Thursday night (7:05) at TD Garden.

SHORTHANDED PROWESS: Once again the Bruins’ penalty-killing unit came up big. With Boston holding a 3-2 lead late in the third period, the Rangers were given a two-man advantage for 1:45. Thomas made some solid saves to stifle New York’s attack as the Rangers showed why their power play is ranked 20th in the league. Thomas made his biggest save of the game when he stopped a redirect by the Rangers’ Ryan Callaghan during New York’s two-man advantage.

FORE! With Boston trailing by a goal, and on the heels of a tremendous pair of saves by Thomas in the second period, the Bruins knotted the game at 1-1, a result of a solid forecheck by Patrice Bergeron. His relentless pursuit in the offensive zone forced a turnover. Nathan Horton, positioned perfectly, collected the puck and quickly fed Lucic, who pumped home his seventh goal of the season.

BACK TO THE FUTURE: Seguin proved why he’s in the NHL as an 18-year-old rookie. He’s had his growing pains, but has shown flashes of what’s to come in his career. He showcased his tremendous speed against the Rangers, resulting in Boston’s go-ahead goal in the second period. He took control of the puck from inside Boston’s blue line and took it the length of the ice before snapping off a laser to beat Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist and give Boston a 2-1 advantage. It was Seguin's fourth goal of the season, and another example of his natural abilities. It was the type of play you should expect to see a lot more of once he completely adjusts to this level.

500 AND COUNTING: Bruins bench boss Claude Julien coached his 500th career NHL game Wednesday night as Boston earned the victory. Julien, who has also coached the Montreal Canadiens and New Jersey Devils, has a 262-169-10-59 career record. With the win over the Rangers, Julien surpasses Tom Johnson for sixth place on the Bruins’ all-time coaching wins list. The Bruins have won 143 games during Julien’s tenure in Boston.

JOHNNY DANGEROUSLY CLOSE: Bruins defenseman Johnny Boychuk remained out of the lineup Wednesday night as he continues to rehab a fractured left forearm. There was a strong possibility he would return to action against the Rangers, but a game-time decision kept him off the ice. He suffered the injury on Oct. 23 when he was on the receiving end of a slash by the Rangers’ Brandon Dubinsky. Boychuk has missed 10 games, but he could return to the lineup against the Panthers on Thursday night.