Chicago at Boston

Bruins center Kessel hits target twice against Blackhawks


BOSTON -- With little attention being paid to the home team, Boston still came away with the victory.

Phil Kessel scored two goals to lead the Bruins to a 3-1 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday.

While the Red Sox took on the Colorado Rockies at Fenway Park in Game 2 of the World Series and second-ranked Boston College played at Virginia Tech, the 17,565-seat Garden was less than half-filled for the only matchup this season between two of the NHL's original six franchises.

"You have to remember, I came from New Jersey so I am used to this," chuckled first-year Bruins coach Claude Julien. "Once the Red Sox win the World Series, hopefully we will have enough wins behind us that those fans will want to come watch us."

Tim Thomas made 26 saves in improving to 4-1 this season. He entered the game with a league-leading 1.26 goals against average. Boston has won five of six overall and has allowed two goals in three home games.

"It looks like he is under control more," Bruins defenseman Andrew Alberts said of Thomas. "He is more composed than last year and with our defensive system, he knows where the shots are coming from."

Chicago goalie Nikolai Khabibulin hasn't won in Boston since 1996 with an 0-5-2 record.

"I told the guys after the game that I was proud," Blackhawks coach Denis Savard said. "We completely out-chanced them, but it just didn't go our way."

Kessel scored 2:08 into the second period on an end-to-end rush that ended with him wristing a shot past Khabibulin.

"It was tough for the guys to get into it," Bruins forward Marc Savard said. "We know everybody is watching the Sox and we are going to do the same, but we had to create our own energy."

Jonathan Toews tied the game at the 5:13 mark of the second with Chicago on a two-man advantage. Toews, who beat Thomas through a screen, has eight points in his last eight games.

"We deserved a lot more," Toews said, "but if we keep doing the right things then good things should happen."

Kessel scored the game-winner on another impressive individual effort when he sidestepped Blackhawks defenseman Magnus Johansson and flipped the puck past Khabibulin with 5:51 remaining in the second. He has five goals this season after scoring 11 in 2006-07.

Glen Metropolit capped off the scoring for Boston with his first of the season with 12:52 remaining.


  • Blackhawks F David Koci left the ice with his face covered in blood at the 11:42 mark of the first period after engaging in a fight with Bruins captain Zdeno Chara.
  • Chicago D Andrei Zyuzin left the game with a pulled muscle.
  • Blackhawks RW Patrick Kane didn't record a point after scoring nine in the last three games.
  • Boston is 3-0-0 at home.
  • The announced attendance was 10,290.
Copyright 2018 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.
Phil Kessel finishes off an end-to-end rush with a wrister past goalie Nikolai Khabibulin. (AP)
Phil Kessel finishes off an end-to-end rush with a wrister past goalie Nikolai Khabibulin. (AP)
Chicago (5-5-0)0101
Boston  (6-3-0) «0213
Three Stars
P. Kessel

Goals: 2
Assist(s): 0
T. Thomas

Saves: 26
Save Pct.: .963
Z. Chara

Goals: 0
Assist(s): 0

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Scoring Summary
02:08Phil Kessel (4), Wrist Shot, Unassisted.
05:13Power Play - Jonathan Toews (4), Wrist Shot. Assist: Robert Lang, Jason Williams
14:09Phil Kessel (5), Snap Shot. Assist: Andrew Ference
07:08Glen Metropolit (1), Snap Shot. Assist: P.J. Axelsson, Aaron Ward
Penalty Summary
11:42Koci, 5 min, Fighting
11:42Chara, 5 min, Fighting
12:04Samsonov, 2 min, Interference
13:46Adams, 2 min, Hooking
03:28Lucic, 2 min, High sticking
04:51Chara, 2 min, Roughing
07:41Lapointe, 2 min, Interference
12:38Burish, 2 min, Roughing
12:38Stuart, 2 min, Roughing
17:43Alberts, 2 min, Interference
04:22Johansson, 2 min, Holding
08:45Samsonov, 2 min, Tripping
20:00Ruutu, 2 min, Cross Check
Nikolai Khabibulin57:40153
Tim Thomas60:00261
Game Information
Attendance - 10290
Referees - Wes McCauley, Bill McCreary
Linesmen - Derek Amell, Pierre Champoux
Other Games
Dal 1 Final
LA 2
Min 4 Final
Edm 5
Phi 2 Final
TB 5
NJ 0 Final
StL 0 Final
Colu 3
Pho 1 Final
Ana 0
Atl 0 Final
Nash 3
Tor 5 Final
Pitt 2