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Big Win for B’s

by Staff Writer / Boston Bruins
A quadraphonic blaupunkt?

As Bull Durham’s Nuke LaLoosh said, "I just love winning man…it’s better than losing."

Ol’ Nuke was a genius. And so, it seems, is fellow rookie phenom, Phil Kessel -- especially when it comes to NHL shootouts.

In his three tiebreak attempts for the B’s, Kessel is perfect.

Phil scored to win the game last night in Washington, netted the deciding shootout goal in the 5-4 win over the Penguins on Jan. 18 and the lone goal in 14 attempts by both teams in the 4-3 win vs. Tampa Bay on Nov. 30.

Kessel is very humble about his success and certainly doesn’t need Crash Davis’ help with the clichés.

He’s a genius with those as well.

"I’m just happy to get a win for our team," said Kessel. "I got lucky out there in the shootout, we got the win, and that’s the main thing."

Phil may not be willing to shoot too many words around, a rare and sometimes refreshing trait in this day and age, but as long as he continues to fire pucks past goalies, fans will have one word to describe the rookie: Clutch.

And basically, that is the only word that matters. No?

Tim’s Terrific
Tim Thomas had a strong game yesterday and was one of the Bruins most important players in Washington. The "Tank" made 32 saves, plus two more in the shootout, to give the B’s a chance to take home the "W."

But although he looked confident in the Bruins victory, Thomas admitted to NESN’s Rob Simpson that he was not all that sure about the shootout.

"Semin is a very good shooter," said Thomas, still annoyed that any got past him in the penalty shot contest. "I faced him in a shootout earlier this year…but I wasn’t sure what he was going to do.

"Just before the shootout, I was saying to Bobby Allen on the bench, ’I wish (goalie coach) Bob Essensa were here’ so we could have gone through what (the shooters would) do.

"So, once you get scored on (in) the first (attempt) you start to think ’Oh no, maybe this isn’t our night.’ But we got a goal (on our) second (try) and I was able to stop Ovechkin and going into the third shooter I was thinking, ’If I stop it here, maybe we will win this thing.’"

Tim Thomas: Goalie, folk hero, philosopher, and now shootout prophet. What’s next, writer?


Savvy’s sizzling
Marc Savard continues to be the Bruins most dangerous player. Although he has not scored a goal since January 18th, Savvy has assisted on six tallies in the last four games and has clearly been the Bruins best player since the Christmas break -- if not the entire season.

With his 18-50-68 line, Savard is leading Boston in points and assists, and has played in all 52 of the B’s games. He is tied with Joe Thornton with 68 points, good for a tie for fifth in the entire NHL. Marc is also third in the league with 50 assists.

Savard was everywhere last night, logging over 24-minutes of ice time, taking four shots and winning eight face-offs. He was also the first star of the game.

Reich no day at the Beach for Clymer
I will admit, I am not as big of a fan of hockey fights as some, but I couldn’t help getting out of my seat to cheer on B’s forward Jeremy Reich last night.

Early in the game, Washington’s Ben Clymer seemed to take advantage of body positioning during a pile up behind a net.

With Boston’s Bobby Allen pinned to the boards by an official, the Washington forward did not cover himself in Old Glory when he threw a couple of bare handed punches at the first year D-man -- especially as it seemed Allen wasn’t able to defend himself.

Enter Jeremy (cue Pearl Jam music here) who taught the Washington forward a thing or two about the sweet science.

Good class, Mr. Reich.

Beautiful goal for Bochenski
The other Bruins newcomer, forward Brandon Bochenski, made an immediate impact when he beat Olaf Kolzig in the second period.

"He looked very comfortable on the ice after the first period," said Dave Lewis, post game. "He got a big goal for us and was dangerous, having just settled in."
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