Friday, December 27, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Bruins 5, Senators 0
By Joe McDonald
BOSTON -- After the NHL's three-day holiday break, the Boston Bruins were back in action and posted a 5-0 win over the Ottawa Senators on Friday night at TD Garden.
The Bruins received a pair of goals from Reilly Smith, while Jarome Iginla, David Krejci and Brad Marchand added a goal each. Boston goaltender Tuukka Rask made 33 saves for his fourth shutout of the season. With the win, Boston increases its home winning streak to eight straight games.
The first period was sloppy on both sides and Ottawa had a 15-5 advantage in shots. The Bruins' best scoring chance came midway through the opening period when Marchand rang one off the right post.
Boston needed a better start in the second period and it created a few quality chances early. The Bruins' Matt Fraser collected a rebound off his own shot and his backhand attempt rang off the post two minutes into the period.
As Boston's shot total increased in the second, so did the scoring chances. The Bruins were finally rewarded for their efforts when Iginla scored a power-play goal at 16:29 of the period. It was his 11th goal of the season.
Boston's top line made its presence felt early in the third period when Krejci scored at 38 seconds. He was perfectly positioned on the off-post when Bruins defenseman Matt Bartkowski wrapped the puck around the boards. Krejci was able to retrieve it and beat Ottawa goalie Robin Lehner to give Boston a 2-0 lead.
The Bruins made it 3-0 when Smith notched his 13th goal of the season, finishing off a 2-on-1 with Marchand, who faked the shot before moving the puck to his linemate for the tally at 10:20 of the third period. Smith's second goal of the game came at 17:26. He's heating up of late, posting five goals and two assists for seven points in his past three games.
Marchand gave Boston a 5-0 lead when he scored a short-handed goal with 27 seconds remaining in regulation.
20-SOMETHING: With the victory, Rask reached the 20-win plateau in his 30th game of the season. He becomes only the third goalie to reach that mark this season, following Pittsburgh's Marc-Andre Fleury (21) and Tampa Bay's Ben Bishop (20). This is only the second time in his NHL career Rask has reached 20 wins. During the 2009-10 season, Rask earned 22 wins in 45 regular-season games, while splitting time in net with fellow goalie Tim Thomas. Last season, Rask was 19-10-5 in 36 games during the lockout-shortened, 48-game season. Overall, Rask is 20-8-2 this season.
MORE BAD NEWS? Bruins defenseman Dennis Seidenberg left the game with just under five minutes to play in regulation after he was tangled up behind the Boston net with the Senators' Cory Conacher. It appeared Seidenberg suffered a right leg injury. After the collision, he remained on the ice for a moment before skating off on his own and going to the locker room. He did not return.
PAILLE'S BACK: After missing the past seven games with a concussion, Bruins forward Daniel Paille returned to the lineup. He was back on the team's fourth line, along with Gregory Campbell and Jordan Caron.
WELCOME TO THE SHOW: After being recalled Friday from Providence of the AHL, goaltender Niklas Svedberg served as Rask's backup. Fellow Bruins netminder Chad Johnson was a healthy scratch. Bruins coach Claude Julien said Friday morning it's likely Svedberg will get a start sooner rather than later, which could mean he'll see action against the Senators on Saturday night in Ottawa.
UP NEXT: The Bruins and Senators complete this home-and-home series Saturday night in Ottawa. It's the second of only two home-and-home series for the Bruins this season. Boston split consecutive games against the Buffalo Sabres on Dec. 19 and 21.