Bruins score 4 in 3rd, beat Rangers 5-2 for 7th straight
NEW YORK (AP) — Trent Frederic and Jake DeBrusk scored third-period goals and Linus Ullmark made 18 saves as the streaking Boston Bruins won their seventh straight game Thursday night with a 5-2 victory over the New York Rangers.
Frederic’s second goal of the season at 6:04 put the Bruins ahead 3-2 before DeBrusk rifled his fourth past Rangers goalie Igor Shesterkin at 10:19.
Hampus Lindholm added an empty-net goal with 58 seconds left.
Nick Foligno and Taylor Hall each had two assists for Boston, off to a franchise-best 10-1-0 start under new coach Jim Montgomery. Ullmark improved to 8-0-0.
“This group makes it fun every night,” said the 35-year-old Foligno, a veteran of 16 NHL seasons and playing his second with Boston. “We’re so process-focused. The results take care of themselves.”
The teams were tied 1-all entering the third before Charlie Coyle put the Bruins ahead at 2:56. Rangers defenseman Adam Fox evened the score 48 seconds later.
Boston swarmed the Rangers early, outshooting them 11-5 in the first. David Pastrnak scored his team-leading eighth goal at 12:53, beating Shesterkin from a sharp angle to the goaltender’s right.
Pastrnak also leads the Bruins with 19 points overall.
“I thought everybody contributed and helped us tonight,” Montgomery said. “The Rangers are a really good hockey team and we kept them to the outside. … I thought it was our best checking game. We took away time and space. We showed great poise.”
Boston scored first for the eighth time in 11 games. The Bruins have won all eight. They have the best record in the league.
“Everyone has bought in,” Frederic said. “We’re having fun at the rink. Monty has been great to everyone. He’s made it a fun environment.”
Shesterkin made 32 saves in defeat, his first in regulation to fall to 6-1-2. His eight-game point streak to begin a season was second in Rangers history to Gilles Villemure’s start in 1971-72.
The Rangers, despite losing stalwart defenseman Ryan Lindgren early with an upper-body injury, wrestled the momentum back in the second period as they outshot the Bruins 11-9, including a 10-minute stretch in which Boston was denied any shots.
Boston outshot the Rangers 17-4 in the third.
“They are a good hockey team. They move the puck, they played hard,´´ Rangers coach Gerard Gallant said.
Lindgren, acquired from Boston in February 2018, is day-to-day, according to Gallant.
“Losing Lindgren is big any time,” he said.
New York tied it on a goal by Jimmy Vesey — his first since rejoining the Rangers last summer — at 10:21 of the middle period. Vesey took a pinpoint, cross-ice pass from Mika Zibanejad before depositing the puck past Ullmark.
Rangers forward Kaapo Kakko assisted on both New York goals.
“We tied the game and they came right back and scored,” Vesey said. “Overall I think we can be better.”
Shortly after Vesey scored, New York defenseman Braden Schneider flattened Frederic with a clean hit in the Rangers zone, and two fights ensued after the check. Schneider was challenged by Boston’s A.J. Greer, and Frederic fought with Barclay Goodrow at 10:57.
Coyle said his teammates’ instant response gave the bench a definite boost.
“There’s was no hesitation. That says a lot,” said Coyle, whose second-period goal was his fifth of the season. “Guys are doing the little things to show that they care, they are ready and focused and they are not going to be pushed around. … That’s good stuff.”
The Bruins are 4-1-0 on the road and 5-1-0 against Eastern Conference opponents.
Boston has not allowed a power-play goal on the road this season.
“They are a good team. I think we can play with them,” said Rangers leading scorer Artemi Panarin, held without a point for only the fourth time in 12 games. “But they scored more than us.”
The Rangers have played more regular-season games (664) against Boston than any other opponent in their 96-season history. The Bruins are 303-252-97-12 in those games.
NOTES: The Bruins scratched defenseman Jakub Zboril, forward Craig Smith and injured goalie Jeremy Swayman. … Boston was without defenseman Charlie McAvoy, recovering from offseason shoulder surgery, and defenseman Derek Fortbort, hurt in Tuesday’s 6-5 win at Pittsburgh. Veteran forward David Krejci also remains out. … The Rangers scratched injured forwards Vitali Kravtsov and Filip Chytil, plus defenseman Libor Hajek. … The teams meet again Jan. 19 at Madison Square Garden and March 4 in Boston.
Bruins: Visit the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday.
Rangers: Host the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday.
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