BOSTON -- The best thing about Claude Juliens wacky line-changing high jinks was on display for the Bruins again on Saturday night as the silver lining in their latest defeat.
Milan Lucic and Tyler Seguin once again each provided goals and flashed the kind of chemistry with all-purpose center Chris Kelly that deserves a longer look.
Unfortunately not enough of the other three lines had as much luck finishing off plays or tapping into their line mojo.
Instead the Bruins dropped the 4-2 decision to the Sharks on Saturday night with the other three lines going dark, but Lucic and Seguin nearly resuscitated the Bruins on their own with two goals in 29 seconds on the same shift in the third period.
Theyve been good. I said that the other night, too. Milan has played two of his best games here in the last two. When you give Tyler an opportunity, he makes things happen, said Julien. Hes playing very well for us also. Chris Kelly is probably the underrated guy on that line, but he has been tremendous with those two guys. Im happy with that line. Theyve given us exactly what we were hoping for.
Seguin continued to extend his team lead with nine points (3 goal and 6 assists) in eight games as Bostons only point-per-game player, and likes what he sees around him on that suddenly productive line.
With Lucic he makes it so much easier for you out there, hes such a big body and he goes in the corner and wins battles. For a guy like that size to have as much skill as he does its hard to find it out there. He does a great job, said Seguin. Kelly is probably one of the best positional forwards Ive ever played with. So our line seems to be clicking and hopefully it stays that way.
The two scores stole the momentum for the Bruins in a game that appeared to be shifting their way, but the Bs never executed that one final play that could have crushed San Joses spirit.
Lucic was on the board first with a goal in his second straight game, and Seguin followed by popping home a saucer pass through the crease from Lucic that tied the game up for the Bruins.
Unfortunately for all the players involved that was all the scoring Boston would muster in the loss, and Seguin was off the ice for the frantic final minute of play when he took a Benn Ferriero slash off the knee that went unnoticed by the refs.
So the ending wasnt ideal for the Bruins, but theres plenty of promise with 23-year-old Lucic and 19-year-old Seguin fostering their chemistry, and Kelly providing situational assistance and back-checking that allowed the experienced center to cover up some of the seven giveaways by the two wingers throughout the game.
Lucic actually said playing with Kelly and Seguin has helped him find his straight-ahead game because hes got to pick up his skating pace just to keep up with the instinctive Kelly and the speedy Seguin.
I feel better pursuing the puck and getting on pucks where the first five-six games I felt like I was a second late, a step late getting to pucks, said Lucic. Other teams were able to break out easy because I wasnt on top of them. Its no secret that Seguin has got some pretty good speed.
Its just trying to keep up with him has pushed me harder to get my feet moving, and its great that weve been able to create that chemistry for the three of us.
If the chemistry keeps producing results for Lucic, Seguin and Kelly, they might get the chance to create a lot more in the near future with the hope for better results in the win-loss column.