BruinsDevils: 5 from the First

BruinsDevils: 5 from the First

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.comBOSTON Here are five thoughts from the first period with the Bruins and Devils locked in a 1-1 tie at the TD Garden after 20 minutes of largely lopsided hockey.1)There is desperation written all over New Jerseys game tonight. They came out and walloped the Bruins with everything they had in the first period, outshooting Boston by a 16-6 margin. Ilya Kovalchuk, Travis Zajac and Patrik Elias were buzzing around the Boston net, and Tim Thomas had to be pretty sharp to keep it to only one goal for the Devils. New Jersey cant afford to lose another game or their playoff hopes are essentially over, so theyre playing exactly as they should. Wont be a cake walk for the Bruins.2)If anybody needed a play to break right for them its been Dennis Seidenberg, who has been in a prolonged funk and had the indignity of getting into a shouting match on ice with Tuukka Rask in Toronto Saturday night. He got that in the first period when Seidenberg sliced a puck through traffic, and got an assist when Shawn Thornton tipped a puck past Martin Brodeur. Big goal for Boston after getting dominated in the first period. Nine goals this season for Shawn Thornton. Thats a really big number for the Bruins enforcer.3)Bruins are really starting to slip in the penalty kill department recently, and have allowed at least one power play goal in five of their last seven games. A lot of attention is being paid on the power play, but the kill hurt the Bs again tonight. When is it a good idea to leave Ilya Kovalchuk alone in front of the net on a Devils power play? The 5-on-5 defense and the PK defense still look pretty confused at this point, and that needs to change.4)Another solid period for Tyler Seguin, who is playing with intensity and speed while looking to make plays. The raise in intensity gives you a good idea what kind of player hes going to be someday.5)A game-high three shots in the first period for Devils defenseman Mark Fayne, who has been very good with his shots from the point tonight. Fayne was exposed early and often by opponents earlier in the season, but it appears that hes turned things around like the rest of the team in Jersey.

Rask stops 35 shots in Bruins' 2-1 win over Sabres

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Rask stops 35 shots in Bruins' 2-1 win over Sabres

BUFFALO, N.Y. - Tuukka Rask made 35 saves to help the Bruins hold off the Buffalo Sabres 2-1 on Saturday

David Krejci and Patrice Bergeron scored to give Boston a 2-0 lead and the Bruins improved to 3-0-1 in their past four.

Evander Kane scored his first goal of the season for Buffalo. Robin Lehner returned after missing one game with a hip injury and made 32 saves.

The Sabres combined for nine goals in their previous two wins but the NHL's lowest-scoring team reverted to form from the first 21 games, when star center Jack Eichel was out of the lineup with a high-ankle sprain.

Krejci got the Bruins on the scoreboard with 5:50 left in the first when he deflected Brandon Carlo's slap shot from the point off the right post and into the net.

The Sabres appeared to tie the game late in the second period but replays determined Brian Gionta kicked the puck into the net.

Bergeron made it 2-0 at 7:10 of the second at 7:44 of the third when he knocked on the rebound of his own missed shot. Bergeron initially hit the puck with his forearm on the left edge of the crease and skated around the net to chase down the puck and slip a backhand past Lehner.

The Sabres answered two minutes later, scoring on Rask for the first time in 109:12 this season. Sam Reinhart's feed off the rear wall set up Kane for a wrist shot from the slot that bounced in off Krejci. Reinhart has five points in his last four games.

NOTES: Bruins F Matt Beleskey was escorted to the dressing room in the final minute of the first period with a lower-body injury and did not return. ... Sabres D Josh Gorges did not play after injuring his foot blocking a shot in Thursday's win over the New York Rangers. With Dmitry Kulikov (lower back) and Zach Bogosian (MCL sprain) also out, the Sabres were down three of their top four defenseman and recalled 19-year-old Brendan Guhle from the minors to make his NHL debut. Guhle hustled back to thwart a breakaway by Krejci late in the third period. ... F Anton Blidh became the seventh Bruin to make his NHL debut this season after being recalled from the minors on Friday. ... The Bruins scratched F Jimmy Hayes. D Zdeno Chara, the Bruins' captain, missed his sixth straight game with a lower-body injury. ... Rask got a shutout in Boston's 4-0 win over Buffalo on Nov. 7.

UP NEXT

Bruins: Host Florida on Monday.

Sabres: At Washington on Monday.

 

© 2016 by STATS and The Associated Press.