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Friday, December 13, 2013

Is There a Bruins Fan Out There That Hasn't Fallen In Love with this Team Yet?

Granted they aren't exactly playing the iron of the much deeper Western Conference but the Bruins are finding ways to win when common sense tells you they shouldn't. Boston held off Edmonton 4-3 tonight at Rexall Place for their fourth straight victory. Backup goaltender Chad Johnson made a career-high 39 saves, Jarome Iginla scored two goals and the B's (22-8-2) built an early 3-0 lead that was too much to overcome for the awful Oilers (11-19-3).

This being Edmonton, home of the worst goaltenders in the NHL, Dennis Seidenberg scored a very weak goal (not that he'll complain) at 10:35 in the first period. His first of the season was a knucklepuck that the immortal Devan Dubnyk had no chance to stop. Iginla doubled the lead at 16:11 when his blast from near the boards (and blue line) went past Dubnyk. His seventh goal of the season was assisted by Seidenberg and David Krejci plus Milan Lucic screened Dubnyk.

The Oilers had given up the most short-handed goals in the NHL so naturally they had to let the Bruins nab one. Brad Marchand one-timed a pass from Patrice Bergeron at at 18:17. It was Marchand's fifth goal of the season.

David Perron might be one of the only guys on the Oilers with any type of fight or character. He battled back with a pair of goals to cut it to 3-2. His wrist shot went top shelf on Johnson at 3:25 then the Bruins' goaltender got caught too far out of the net so Perron wrapped around it and poked in a loose puck for an ugly goal (if you root for Boston) at 17:27.

Maybe the highlight of the whole contest (assuming you don't mind fighting) was Lucic brawling with Luke Gazdic (great name). Iginla couldn't get the empty-netter on Tuesday in Calgary when the whole crowd wanted it but he delivered tonight at 19:16 from Krejci and Kevan Miller (1st NHL assist).

I didn't really notice him much but I guess former Bruin Andrew Ference (now Edmonton's captain) had a good game: +1, one shot on goal, three blocked shots and two hits. I wish him nothing but the best, he was one of my favorite Bruins from the last few seasons.

Boston wraps up this four-game road trip on Saturday (10, NESN) at Vancouver (18-10-5, 4th in Pacific Division). The Canucks have won their last five games heading into tomorrow night vs. the Oilers.

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