WASHINGTON - The Bruins reaped the benefits of a last-second goal Tuesday night when David Krejci's go-ahead tally with 0.6 seconds remaining in the second period set the tone for Boston's comeback victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Some 24 hours later, though, the Bruins were on the other side of a late-period marker. Alex Ovechkin's power-play goal with just 14 seconds to go in the middle frame broke a 2-2 tie and poked a hole in Boston's sails.
Washington went on to score two more goals - including one early in the third from former Bruin Brett Connolly - and capture a 5-3 win over the Bruins, which ended the Black & Gold's three-game winning streak.
Video: BOS Recap: Marchand scores twice in 5-3 loss to Caps
"Those are killer goals," said Bruins coach Claude Julien. "We scored one [Tuesday] night with less than a second left on Tampa and I thought that was the turning point of the game.
"I think we missed at least two clears on that kill and it ends up in our net with about 15 seconds left. Not a lot of fun coming into your dressing room down by a goal against this team.
"We had to bear down and go out there in the third and get the next one. But they scored a couple goals there again. Great execution on their part, but not so great on ours."
Video: Bruins speak after loss to Washington
Boston fell behind, 2-0, on first-period goals from T.J. Oshie and Nicklas Backstrom, but stormed back to tie the score with two power-play tallies from the scorching-hot Brad Marchand.
The first came at 18:46 of the first, when Marchand took a pass from Patrice Bergeron and fired a filthy wrister over the right shoulder of Washington goalie Braden Holtby. Marchand followed up with the tying goal just 2:49 into the second.
Bergeron kept the puck in the zone and spun to find David Pastrnak in the left circle. Pastrnak, who assisted on all three Boston goals, sent a cross-ice pass to Ryan Spooner. Spooner quickly spotted Marchand alone on the doorstep, where Marchand tapped the puck into an open net.
Video: BOS@WSH: Marchand whips a wrister past Holtby for PPG
The success on the man advantage, however, could not conceal Boston's troubles five-on-five.
"We obviously didn't play the way that we have been five-on-five recently," said Marchand. "We just didn't seem to have the jump or the legs."
Boston also knows it cannot continue to lean so heavily on its top trio of Bergeron, Marchand, and Pastrnak.
"We need to find more scoring," said Krejci, who notched the Bruins' third goal with 1:31 left in the game. "We can't rely on one line every night. They win us some games, but it's not enough. Other guys have to step up.
"If they don't do that, we will be in trouble. We have to start doing it. Other lines have to start scoring, that's the only way we'll be winning hockey games."
Video: BOS@WSH: Krejci chips home a loose puck
Bergeron Leaves After Blocked Shot
Bergeron took a Matt Niskanen slap shot off the right leg early in the third and needed assistance getting off the ice. The center left the game briefly, before returning for a couple of shifts later in the period. But Bergeron left again with a few minutes remaining and did not return.
"We'll know more. He obviously tried to come back, so hopefully better than worse. We'll evaluate as we move on here," said Julien.
Marchand Remains Hot
Marchand's three-point night (he also assisted on Krejci's goal late in the third) gave him multi-point performances in four straight games. The winger had two goals each against Detroit and Pittsburgh before the All-Star Break and two helpers against Tampa Bay on Thursday night.
He now has 23 points (13 goals, 10 assists) in his last 13 games. Earlier Wednesday, Marchand was named the NHL's second star for January after leading the league with 11 goals during the month.
Marchand has rocketed to third in the NHL in scoring (54 points), behind Connor McDavid (59 points) and Sidney Crosby (56 points).
Video: BOS@WSH: Marchand nets his second PPG of the night