|Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara, of Slovakia, scores past San Jose Sharks goalie Evgeni Nabokov, of Kazakhstan, during the shootout of an NHL hockey game in San Jose, Calif., Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010. Boston won 2-1.(AP Photo/Tony Avelar) |
The Bruins upset the San Jose Sharks 2-1, in late night shootout that stretched into the early morning for fans on the East Coast.
The Sharks, who are now tied with the Chicago Blackhawks for the NHL lead in points, led the Bruins in shots on goal 31-42. However, despite their many opportunities, they could not overcome B’s stalwart goaltender Tim Thomas
, who registered a season-high 41 saves.
“Tonight to put in the amount of work from top to bottom that we did and actually get rewarded with the two points, it could end up being huge at the end of the year, you never know,” Thomas said.
“I hope it’s a statement to ourselves that we may be low on manpower but if we go out there and do the right things, we can not only just compete on a nightly basis, but put ourselves in that position to win on a nightly basis.”
Head coach Claude Julien emphasized the unrelenting effort by players on the roster, which contributed to the win that snapped their three-game losing streak.
“We gave everything we had tonight,” he said. “By the end of the game you could see the guys on the bench just totally exhausted.”
“It’s two tough games in two nights with the travel so, and we know what kind of team San Jose is…Timmy had to steal us one and our top guys had to be our top guys.”
Captain Zdeno Chara
, whose cannon scored the winning goal in the shootout on Evgeni Nabokov, kept it simple.
“When you’re going for a shootout, you have to do what you do best and …that’s what I decided to do. I decided to pick a side and fire,” he said.
Left winger Daniel Paille
scored the first goal early in the second period which was answered seven minutes later, by former Bruin Joe Thornton. The game went penalty-less up until the final period, when several power plays on both sides increased the pace of an already tense game.
The excitement changed to a nervous buzz as the shootout began. The fourth player in line, Chara, fired it past Nabokov and the Bruins boarded the plane to L.A. smiling. They will face the Los Angeles Kings tomorrow at 4 pm.
“It was a huge statement game for us, especially with so many challenges facing us tonight,” Chara said. “People can never count us out. We always bring our best when we face challenges and obviously it’s a big win, two big points, but LA’s going to be another task.”