Bruins beat up on Stars in wild one, 6-3

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Bruins beat up on Stars in wild one, 6-3

By Danny Picard
CSNNE.com

BOSTON -- @font-face font-family: "Times New Roman";p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: "Times New Roman"; a:link, span.MsoHyperlink color: blue; text-decoration: underline; a:visited, span.MsoHyperlinkFollowed color: purple; text-decoration: underline; table.MsoNormalTable font-size: 10pt; font-family: "Times New Roman"; div.Section1 page: Section1; Three drops of the puck. Three fights. Four seconds.

Thursday night's game at the TD Garden began with the Bruins making a statement with their fists, and they followed it up by making a statement with their sticks. They scored four goals in the first period after engaging in three separate fights and then survived a third period let-down to beat the Stars, 6-3, Thursday night.
"We know theyre a physical team and we knew that before heading into the game. We wanted to obviously respond and show its our building --and we wanted to be physical," said PatriceBergeron, who finished with two goals and an assist in the win. "I mean it wasnt necessarily supposed to be fights, but it happened that way. Our guys did a great job responding and doing that, but Ialsothink the team had to respond for these guys that chipped in and fought with goals. I think we did that."

The Bruins' Gregory Campbell, Shawn Thornton, and Adam McQuaid dropped their gloves one after another in the game's opening seconds, marking one of the most memorable nights at the Garden in a long, long time.

Bergeron's two goals were both the result of going hard to the net and receiving perfect feeds from Brad Marchand. Milan Lucic and Shawn Thornton had two more to help the Bruins finish the first period with a 4-0 lead.

Dallas got a goal midway through the second period from Karlis Skrastins, and Brenden Morrow and Brad Richards added two more in the third, but it wasnt enough.

All of it began when Campbell lined up at the right wing on the games opening faceoff, and after some talk, dropped the mitts with Steve Ott the moment the puck was dropped.

Once that was finished, Thornton dropped the gloves with Krystofer Barch immediately following the next puck drop.

And just when you thought the chaos was over, McQuaid put a beatdown on Brian Sutherby, immediately following the third faceoff.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the last time there were six fighting majors within the first five seconds of a game was in 1996.

Lucic and Bergeron went on to each score in the first 1:20 of the game, forcing Stars coach Marc Crawford to pull goalie Andrew Raycroft after just two shots. One more fight ensued soon thereafter as Andrew Ference pummeled Adam Burish after Burish fired a shot at goalie Tuukka Rask after the whistle.

Bergeron then put the Bruins up 3-0 midway through the first period, and Thornton sniped the top-right corner to give the Bs a 4-0 lead with four minutes left in the period.

Boston held a 4-1 lead after two periods, but allowed two Dallas goals in the first three-and-a-half minutes of the third, which cut the Bruins lead to 4-3, forcing Claude Julien to call a time out.

Two minutes after the Stars made it a one-goal game, rookie Tyler Seguin put a spin-around shot through Kari Lehtonens five hole, giving the Bs a 5-3 lead.

Marchand made it 6-3 with 2:20 left in the game, putting home an empty netter out front, after Bergeron missed a hat-trick bid by hitting the right side of the empty net.

Danny Picard is on Twitter at http:twitter.comDannyPicard. You can listen to Danny on his streaming radio show I'm Just Sayin' Monday-Friday from 9-10 a.m. on CSNNE.com.

Julien wonders whether Bruins shutout loss was fatigue-related

Julien wonders whether Bruins shutout loss was fatigue-related

BOSTON – The Bruins didn’t show anything on the ice in Monday afternoon’s 4-0 matinee loss, and that’s not really any kind of an overstatement.

The scoring chances were almost nonexistent despite 32 shots on net, the second period was dreadful as the Bruins gave up three goals over the course of a six minute span and there was zero added urgency in the third period once the B’s fell behind. The emotion was missing from the drop of the puck to open the game and it never showed up once the Islanders began taking control of the game.

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It was a bitterly disappointing result after the Black and Gold had played so well in their previous five games, and put in strong, winning efforts against the Panthers, Blues and Flyers.

On Monday afternoon, the passes were sloppy and errant all over the ice, there was zero physicality and the Bruins buckled once the Isles turned the intensity up just a little bit in the second period. The game was basically over once Nikolay Kulemin snapped one home wide open from the slot area with Torey Krug, Adam McQuaid and David Krejci all blowing their defensive assignments, and then Tuukka Rask followed it up by allowing a softie to Josh Bailey from a bad angle close to net.  

So Bruins head coach Claude Julien termed it a “flat” performance once it was all over with, and openly wondered whether it was fatigue-related result linked to the compacted schedule Boston has played through this season. Monday marked the seventh straight day that the Bruins held some kind of formal skate, though most of the veteran B's players stayed off the ice during last week's Wednesday off-day practice in Nashville.   

“We were flat tonight, obviously, flat from the get-go. I think that first half of the game, we didn’t give much until they scored that first goal. We were able to stay in, but we certainly weren’t generating much ourselves, from that point of view,” said Claude Julien. “His is really the first year, for me as well, going through a condensed schedule, and I’m certainly not using that as an excuse, is it fatigue?. . . But we were flat tonight. How do you explain it? I don’t know. I know that it’s frustrating. I know that it’s disappointing. That’s all I can say.

“Whether it’s mental fatigue, whatever it is. We made some mistakes tonight like, from the goals you look at, we weren’t even in the position that we’re normally in. So we were totally out of whack, as far as even defending. When you give that first goal that much room in the middle of the ice, your D’s go on the wrong side, your weak-side forward is way on the other side, and you open up the slot area, that’s something I haven’t seen much of this year. I think it said a lot from our game tonight.”

The compacted schedule certainly could be a factor for a Bruins team that’s played more games than anybody else in the Eastern Conference to this point, but the B’s also had 48 hours to recharge after winning a Saturday matinee over the Flyers. So the fatigue excuse seems a little far-fetched for a hockey club that’s no-showed a few too many times this season, and did it again on Monday afternoon against one of the worst teams in the NHL.