Saturday, January 4, 2014
Rapid Reaction: Bruins 4, Jets 1
By Joe McDonald
BOSTON -- After missing Friday's practice for a maintenance day, defenseman Torey Krug was in the lineup Saturday and produced a three-point game to help the Bruins to a 4-1 victory over the Winnipeg Jets at TD Garden.
He scored a pair of goals and assisted on another en route to victory. With his third multipoint game of the season, Krug now has 10 goals and 13 assists for 23 points in 42 games. His three-point game was a career high for a regular-season game. Also, he joins Bobby Orr, Ray Bourque and Greg Hawgood as rookie defensemen for the Bruins to score 10 goals in his first season.
Winnipeg gained the early lead when the Jets' Dustin Byfuglien scored at 10:54 of the first period. Rask made the initial save on Byfuglien's shot from the right side, but he collected the rebound, circled the net, curled around the top of the left faceoff circle and his wrist shot found its way through traffic to give the Jets a 1-0 lead.
Boston responded when Paille scored his sixth goal of the season to tie the game at 1-1 at 14:06 of the first period. He was camped out on the off post when Krug made a heads-up pass before Paille pumped it home.
Krug scored his first goal at 3:08 of the second period to give the Bruins a 2-1 lead when his slap shot from the left point beat Winnipeg goaltender Ondrej Pavelec through a screen. It was Krug's first goal since Dec. 8 at Toronto. Krug added his second of the game at 7:18 of the second period to give Boston a 3-1 lead. His shot on net from the left faceoff circle was redirected off a defender's stick and past Pavelec.
Smith collected his 15th goal of the season to give the Bruins a 4-1 lead at 9:59 of the third period. Smith now has 32 points in 42 games for the Bruins this season.
Claude Julien has compiled a 284-158-58 record in 500 games with Boston.
DEBUT: Justin Florek was recalled from Providence prior to the game and made his NHL debut against the Jets. The 23-year-old forward becomes the sixth Bruin this season to make his debut. He played the left side on the Bruins' fourth line, along with center Gregory Campbell and Paille, who played the right side, which is his off wing. Florek played well and his screen set up Krug's first goal.
DROP 'EM: Chara collected his second fighting major of the season when dropped the gloves with the Jets' Chris Thorburn at 3:16 of the first period. Thorburn tried to land a couple of uppercuts, but couldn't connect before Chara fell to the ice. On the ensuing face off, the Bruins' Matt Fraser went toe-to-toe with the Jets' James Wright in a spirited bout. In the third period, former Bruin teammates Adam McQuaid and Mark Stuart dropped the gloves at 13:40. McQuaid landed a clean check on Stuart, knocking him to the ice near the penalty box. When Stuart got to his feet, the two went at it.
MILESTONE: Bruins coach Claude Julien Saturday coached his 500th game behind the Boston bench. He received a nice ovation from the fans when a message was put on the video board in the first period, acknowledging the accomplishment. Overall, he has a 403-244-10-81 record in 738 NHL games. With the Bruins, he has a 284-158-58 record. Oh, and a Stanley Cup championship.
After Saturday's win, Julien said, "I had a player give me the puck tonight and I said, 'What are you doing?' He said, 'It's your puck for 500.' I didn't know what he was talking about, but I just coached my 500th game here with the Bruins, which I found out after the game. Our guys here know better, I don't really want to know those kinds of things because they're not as important as the rest of the job I have to do. It's always nice to be here for that long, like I always say, I hope I can be here for another 500."
UP NEXT: The Bruins head out west on a three-game road trip through Anaheim, Los Angeles and San Jose. Boston returns home to host the Toronto Maple Leafs on Jan. 14 at TD Garden.