By Danny Picardand Joe Haggerty
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"; table.MsoNormalTable font-size: 10pt; font-family: "Times New Roman"; div.Section1 page: Section1; The Bruins allowed three power-play goals for the first time this season, and couldn't do anything while on the man advantage themselves as they lost to the Carolina Hurricanes, 3-0, Friday at the TD Garden. The B's came out strong in the first period, but let up a power play goal at the end of the first period to Jeff Skinner with 16 seconds left in the period. That little slip killed Boston's momentum, and they were a lesser team in the final 40 minutes of the shutout loss."Our execution got very poor after the first period and our special teams play was unacceptable," said coach Claude Julien. "That was the story of the game."
Tim Thomas suffered his third loss of the season and is now 11-2-1 on the year, while Cam Ward brought his best stuff to the post-Thanksgiving Day table, making 37 saves in recording his 10th win and first shutout -- of the year.
The Hurricanes scored on their first three power plays of the afternoon, and took a 1-0 lead with 15.8 seconds left in the first period after Skinner took advantage of a Daniel Paille turnover in Carolinas zone.
Paille was streaking down the right wing on a 2-on-1 short-handed bid with Patrice Bergeron, but lost the puck at the Hurricanes blue line. Joe Corvo turned it up ice the other way, and Tuomo Ruutu came in on a 2-on-1, finding Skinner out front. Skinner put a one-timer past Thomas for the 1-0 lead.
Carolina made it 2-0 with 8:51 left in the second period, as Ruutu tipped home an Ian White shot from the point.
Jussi Jokinen added the Hurricanes third power-play goal of the game with 12:08 left in the third period. GOLD STAR: Give it to Cam Ward, who celebrated the birth of his child with a stellar 37-save effort and looked like the goaltender he can be during the good runs he's enjoyed through his career. The Bruins were all over Ward in the first period, but he made some highlight-reel saves among his 12 stops the best was altering a Nathan Horton shot near the right post in the first 20 minutes that kept Carolina in the game early. No gold stars for the Black and Gold in a pathetic effort.BLACK EYE: Where to begin: A power play that managed exactly zero shots in its first two cracks on Friday, and finished with only six shots on net while struggling to 0-for-4 on the day? A top-ranked penalty kill that allowed the 29th-ranked power play in the NHL to score three PP goals against them? Nathan Horton with a six-game goal-scoring drought? A team that's allowed the opposition to score the first goal in 10 of their last 12 games, and constantly seems to be playing catch-up hockey? So many to choose from.TURNING POINT: The Bruins dominated the first period and looked like they might be ready to score when Daniel Paille led a short-handed rush into the Carolina zone. But a Paille turnover quickly descended into a back-breaking Jeff Skinner goal with 16 seconds left. The Bruins were a lesser team after that killer of a Carolina score.BY THE NUMBERS: 104 the number of games the Bruins played between games where they allowed three power-play goals. The Bs penalty kill allowed the Hurricanes to go a perfect 3-for-3 on the power play in Friday afternoons loss, and last allowed three on April 9, 2009, against the Canadiens.QUOTE TO NOTE: "Playing from behind is getting old. That's why I've said weve got to find a way here. Figure out how to score that first goal. It's great that we've been able to overcome some deficits and get ourselves back in the game, but eventually it's going to catch up to us." Milan Lucic on the team's inability to get early leads. Most would agree it caught up with them on Friday afternoon.