The Bruins edged the Florida Panthers 2-1 at TD Garden on Wednesday night behind 34 saves by Tim Thomas and goals from Brad Marchand and Milan Lucic. The Bruins now head into the All-Star break in first place in the Northeast Division with a 28-15-7 record.
The Bruins got on the board first 13:31 into the game when Brad Marchand's wrap-around bid crossed the goal line before Florida goalie Tomas Vokoun could pounce on the puck. Patrice Bergeron and Zdeno Chara picked up helpers on Marchand's 13th goal of the season.
Milan Lucic's 20th goal of the season gave the B's a 2-0 lead 1:52 into the second period. Lucic's wrister from the top of the left circle off an offensive zone face-off win by David Krejci whistled over Vokoun's left shoulder an into the upper 90 for his 20th of the season.
Bryan Allen pulled the Panthers to within one goal at 2-1 when he finally put his team on scoresheet 8:37 into the third period. Allen unloaded a cannon from the left point that beat Tim Thomas up high for his 4th goal of the season.
The Panthers put on a lot of offensive pressure in the game's final moments with the goalie pulled including a great bid by Dennis Wideman at the right dot, but Tim Thomas slammed the door to cement the win for the B's.
- For the second game in a row the Bruins have equaled their opponent's shot output. Tonight, both teams put 35 shots on goal tonight.
- Willie O'Ree dropped the ceremonial first puck with local youth hockey players before tonight's game.
- Dennis Wideman was booed every time he touched the puck.
- Milan Lucic is the first Bruin to reach the 20 goal mark this season.
- David Krejci was pushed from behind into the boards by Stephen Weiss. Krejci went into the boards awkwardly and was slow to get up off the ice. He went to the dressing holding his arm, but returned to the game.
- The Bruins out-drew the Panthers 32-24.
- Florida forward Shawn Matthias left the game with an injury.
- The refs keep the whistles in their pockets tonight. Only 2 minors penalties were called (one for each team).
- The Bruins are off for the All-Star break until next Tuesday when they travel to Raleigh, NC to take on the Carolina Hurricanes.
- For more on tonight's game, check out Litter Box Cats
"I try not to dwell on the negative. I know you guys love to. If you could beat somebody down, I’m sure you’d kick them as hard as you could. We just won a game; I’m not sure if you’re aware of that. But that’s I think seven and three in the last ten. So if we can win seventy percent of our games for the season, I don’t really give a [darn] who’s scoring."
Shawn Thornton when asked about what could happen if some of his teammates break out of their slumps
"I think the refs just wanted to get out of here [laughs]. No, the guys did a good job moving their feet…I mean we were skating …there’s not going to be too many calls out there so I think both teams did a good job of moving their feet and not taking any lazy penalties."
Shawn Thornton on the lack of penalties called
"Tim Thomas has been exceptional this year, he’s one of the best goalies in the league. When he sees the puck he’s going to stop it. You have to get rebound goals against him and that’s kind of what we needed tonight."
Florida Panthers forward David Booth
"Yeah, a frustrating guy to play against because he is not the most orthodox goalie, he kind of just throws himself in front of the puck. It gets frustrating sometimes, but they are a pretty solid defensive team, they don’t give up too many chances. We had a couple good ones and Thomas came up with some big saves, especially in the third period."
Florida Panthers forward Chris Higgins
"I kind of panicked. I had a wide-open net to shoot at, and I just didn’t shoot. He came out of the net and I kind of panicked and I was thinking, I better score or else I’m gonna get rained on. I think it banked off of one of their sticks and bounced in."
Brad Marchand describing his goal
"It wasn’t my shoulder it was like my whole arm getting tweaked going for position and it was a little uncomfortable for a few seconds so I stayed on the ice. You know it got a little better so it’s sore but obviously nothing major."
David Krejci on going hard into the boards