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New Jersey at Boston

Devils lack discipline, lose costly game in Boston

CBSSports.com wire reports
  •  

BOSTON -- The first 15 minutes on Tuesday night seemed like the last seven games for the struggling Boston Bruins.

Then they solved New Jersey's tight coverage of their forwards in the neutral zone, started skating harder and carried that momentum to a 4-1 win over the Devils for just their second victory in eight games.

Eastern Conference
SeedTeamGPPTSROW
1z-Pittsburgh487233
2y-Montreal486326
3y-Washington485724
4x-Boston486224
5x-Toronto485726
6x-N.Y. Rangers485622
7x-Ottawa485621
8x-N.Y. Islanders485520
Eliminated
9o-Winnipeg485122
10o-Philadelphia484922
11o-New Jersey484817
12o-Buffalo484814
13o-Carolina484218
14o-Tampa Bay484017
15o-Florida483612
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"We knew the guys felt the pressure of not winning lately," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "It could have easily been a situation where everybody starts to panic, everybody starts to yell and it doesn't get any better, but we stayed with it as a group and we found a solution."

The Bruins held the Devils scoreless after Ilya Kovalchuk scored the game's first goal at 11:05 of the first period. That came on the 15th shot of the game, 14 of them by New Jersey.

Boston ended the period outshot 16-6 then outshot New Jersey 17-8 in the second. Zdeno Chara's power-play goal at 8:17 of the period gave them the lead for good.

"The second half of the first [period] we started to pick it up and skate well and started creating a little bit more speed through the neutral zone," Chara said. "And, obviously, the power play was creating a lot of chances."

The Devils, who committed one penalty in their previous two games, were called for five in the first two periods, and the Bruins' struggling power-play unit finally came through. Boston had scored just twice on its previous 34 power-play opportunities entering the game.

"We can't take as many penalties as we did tonight," Brian Rolston said. "I really thought we had a lot of good things going in the first period. They made it 1-1 and we were killing penalties from then on in."

The Bruins may have forced the Devils into that predicament.

In the last half of the first period, "we started to get our legs moving and that was the difference," Bruins goalie Tim Thomas said. "I think that's what led to them taking the penalties in the second period."

The Bruins improved their Northeast Division-leading points total to 90 with 10 games left, including seven at home. The Montreal Canadiens have 87 points with eight games remaining heading into their game at Boston on Thursday night.

The win followed a 5-2 loss at Toronto on Saturday night that was "a wakeup call," Bruins forward Shawn Thornton said. "We knew the effort was going to be there today."

New Jersey is 1-3 after going 23-3-2 in its previous 28 games and trails Buffalo by nine points for the final Eastern Conference playoff spot. The Devils have nine games left and little chance to reach the playoffs.

"I wish we tried to play a more disciplined game," coach Jacques Lemaire said, "to see our team versus a really top team in the league."

The Devils took a 1-0 lead on Kovalchuk's 27th goal, on a power play. Jacob Josefson passed the puck from behind the net to a wide open Kovalchuk, who fired a 20-footer past Thomas.

The Bruins tied it at 15:39 of the first period on Thornton's career-best ninth goal. Dennis Seidenberg took a rising shot from the right point into a crowd of Thornton and New Jersey's Andy Greene and Anssi Salmela in front of the net. The puck nicked Thornton and went over Martin Brodeur's right shoulder.

Chara put Boston ahead just nine seconds after Nick Palmieri was penalized for tripping. The Bruins won the faceoff, Tomas Kaberle got the puck and passed to Milan Lucic, who passed it from the right side to the left circle where Chara controlled it and put in his 13th goal.

Lucic sealed the victory at 16:13 of the final period with his 30th goal on a 15-footer from the left circle. Chara started the play with a shot from the right point that Brodeur deflected to his right. Patrice Bergeron came up with the puck and passed to Lucic, whose quick shot beat Brodeur. Lucic is the Bruins' first 30-goal scorer since Phil Kessel scored 36 in 2008-09.

"They were hungry," Brodeur said. "They really played physical on us and it paid dividends for them."

Mark Recchi finished the scoring with an empty-net goal with 40 seconds left.

Notes

  • Brodeur made his 12th straight start since returning from a knee injury.
  • Kovalchuk scored just 11 seconds after Recchi was penalized for hooking.
  • Chara's goal was his 400th career point.
  • The Bruins streak of 19 games without being shut out is their longest of the season.
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Martin Brodeur can't stop one of four Bruins goals as the Devils lose for the third time in four games. (Getty Images)
Martin Brodeur can't stop one of four Bruins goals as the Devils lose for the third time in four games. (Getty Images)

Scoreboard
New Jersey (34-35-4)1001
Boston  (40-22-10) «1124
Three Stars
M. Lucic
BOS


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 1
Z. Chara
BOS


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 2
T. Thomas
BOS


Saves: 30
Save Pct.: .968

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Scoring Summary
1ST PERIOD
11:05Power Play - Ilya Kovalchuk (27), Snap Shot. Assist: Tedenby, Josefson
15:39 - Shawn Thornton (9), Tip-In. Assist: Seidenberg, Kaberle
2ND PERIOD
08:17Power Play - Zdeno Chara (13), Snap Shot. Assist: Lucic, Kaberle
3RD PERIOD
16:13 - Milan Lucic (30), Slap Shot. Assist: Bergeron, Chara
19:20 - Mark Recchi (13), Empty Net. Assist: Bergeron, Chara
Penalty Summary
1ST PERIOD
10:53Recchi, 2 min, Hooking
11:44Zubrus, 2 min, Holding
2ND PERIOD
23.0Fayne, 2 min, Hooking
08:08Palmieri, 2 min, Tripping
10:45Zubrus, 2 min, Holding
13:54Steckel, 2 min, Interference
3RD PERIOD
08:51Campbell, 2 min, Tripping
Shots On Goal
 123T
NJ168731
BOS617730
Goalies
GoalieMINSSGA
Martin Brodeur59:32263
Tim Thomas60:00301
Game Information
Attendance - 17565
Referees - Gord Dwyer, Chris Rooney
Linesmen - Brian Murphy, Tim Nowak
 
Other Games
Ott 3 Final
Car 4
Wash 5 Final
Phi 4
Fla 0 Final
NYR 1
NYI 5 Final
TB 2
Buf 2 Final
Mon 0
Edm 1 Final
Nash 3
Tor 3 Final
Min 0
Colu 4 Final
Colo 5
StL 1 Final
Pho 2