Bruins 'funk' continues with loss to Stars

Bruins 'funk' continues with loss to Stars
November 6, 2013, 12:00 am
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BOSTON - The Bruins clearly had some positives to work after a shootout loss to the Dallas Stars, but it was also their fourth loss in the last five games.

Torey Krug and Milan Lucic continued their solid individual seasons with goals in the 3-2 shootout loss to Tyler Seguin, Rich Peverley and the Dallas Stars at TD Garden, and Patrice Bergeron generated nine shot attempts while winning 11-of-20 face-offs against the Stars.

The Bruins even got out to a pretty strong start with 10 energetic minutes in the first period, which was one of their big goals prior to puck drop.

But the Bruins also slumped badly in the final 10 minutes of the first period, and completely relaxed in the second period while getting outshot by a 13-4 margin. After a physical first period with plenty of heavy hits and nastiness, the Bruins seemed to just back off for the rest of the game in a style of play that heavily favored the Stars.

Worse than that they started to turn the puck over at both blue lines, and allowed their puck management to become much too loose for coach Claude Julien.

That’s clearly not the way the Bruins had drawn up their longest home stand of the season that began Tuesday night against the Stars.

The coach wasn’t happy about it postgame, and his players were all too aware of his displeasure even if they hadn’t been privy to his postgame comments.

“We came out flying in the first in one of our goals [for the game], so we accomplished that,” said Krug. “We came out flat in the second – not what we wanted to do - and the third was a little bit better.

“When we have a lead in our building in the third period, we have to come out on top somehow. As a team we’re just searching for what helps us. More than anything we’re just trying to find within what’s going to work.”

The Bruins collected a point in the shootout loss, but also couldn’t find a way to close out a one-goal lead with less than three minutes remaining in the third period. Zdeno Chara retreated to the bench for a change with the puck coming up the ice, and that opened a seam for Vern Fiddler to receive a pass wide open down the middle of the ice.

Dennis Seidenberg jumped onto the ice to replace Chara, and was forced to trip Fiddler in an attempt to break up the breakaway chance. Fiddler did the rest while beating Rask with a backhanded attempt, and the Stars merely held on until their speedy, skilled forwards in Seguin and Peverley could win the shootout.

The Bruins are in the odd position of potentially dropping out of a playoff position if the losses continue to mount, so some of Boston’s veteran players are looking to regroup the slumping bunch.

“It just seems like everything is out of sync right now. Right now we’ve got to do whatever we can to try to get ourselves out of this jam . . . out of this funk,” said Lucic. “Frustration is not going to help us get through it.”

With the first portion of reunion week down with the loss to Seguin’s Stars, the Bruins have to hope they can bust out of their funk with Tim Thomas’ Panthers and Phil Kessel’s Maple Leafs hot on their heels the rest of his week.