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Coyle Pots Two As B's Claim Sixth Straight Win

Boston keeps things rolling 4-2 victory over Coyotes

by Eric Russo @erusso22 /

BOSTON - Charlie Coyle potted two goals, Patrice Bergeron picked up three points, and the Bruins rolled on to a 4-2 win over the Arizona Coyotes on Saturday afternoon at TD Garden. David Pastrnak also picked up a pair of helpers and Tuukka Rask made 29 saves to propel Boston to its sixth consecutive victory.

Here are some notes and observations from the B's matinee victory:

Coyle Dominates

Since his arrival from Minnesota just under a year ago, Coyle has impressed with his ability to possess the puck, his 6-foot-3, 220-pound frame making it almost impossible to knock the pivot off his mark. On Saturday afternoon, the Weymouth native - en route to his two-goal afternoon - put on a clinic.

"That's my game, that's when I'm feeling good," said Coyle. "Possessing the puck like that, winning battles, I think that's what this team needs from me and I need to do that more often…you always want to push for more. When you find the scoresheet a little more, it helps, it can help confidence wise.

"I'm just trying to play like that consistently. I want to help contribute more, I think we all do, but I just want to do it the right way, so that's the main thing."

Coyle's first of the afternoon - and 10th of the season - came just under seven minutes into the second period when he finished off a feed from Charlie McAvoy from the top of the crease to tie the game at 1. The 27-year-old notched his second of the game with a long-distance empty-netter with 49 seconds remaining.

"I have to tell you, he's really driving that line. Tonight, I thought he was exceptional with the puck," said Cassidy. "I like his game that way…he's really hard to play against, and I think he knows it. It's just a matter of getting it out of him every night and see where it leads."

For the past three games, Coyle has had Sean Kuraly on his left - as well as familiar linemate Anders Bjork on his right - forming a trio that appears to have developed some instant chemistry.

"It's been feeling pretty good, I think," said Coyle. "Me and Bjork have been together for a little bit, we've gotten to know each other and we've talked a lot and Sean is a pretty easy guy to read off of. He's a straight-line guy, he's got the speed too. I like playing with those guys who can go like that, and he works, he's just a dog out there and he's relentless.

"I think we play that way and we battle first and that kind of opens things up for us and you see we get rewarded as far as the last couple games. But that's something we want to keep building on, have that mindset, that mentality it's going to pay off for us when we play that way."

Video: ARI@BOS: Coyle finishes off the feed from McAvoy

Pasta Dishes 

After Coyle tied the game early in the second period with a marker just as a Bruins' power play expired, Boston struck for back-to-back goals with the man advantage to open up a 3-1 lead. Both tallies - Patrice Bergeron at 12:06 and Jake DeBrusk at 14:35 - were tips of David Pastrnak shots from the right circle.

"When [the other teams] get in the lane, then [Pastrnak] has to look for Bergy's stick in the high slot," said Cassidy. "Where is the other D? Is he out to Bergy, or is he staying in front with Jake? So, there's a bit of quick decision making in shot, shot tip to Bergy in the high slot, or am I going back post to Jake? So, he has to make that right call. If he fires it hard on the ice by the first guys, we do have two guys around.

"There's a pretty good chance that if we don't get a tip on it, it goes around the net to [Brad Marchand] on the other side…sometimes you go in between periods and you see that that's open, but I think it's been open a lot more with Torey [Krug] up top into Bergy over the years, because they cheat to Pasta."

Video: ARI@BOS: Bergeron deflects home PPG

Lauzon Ejected 

The Bruins played with five defensemen for much of the night after Jeremy Lauzon was assessed a match penalty for a check to the head of Arizona's Derek Stepan with 20 seconds to play in the first period. Lauzon, exiting the penalty box after taking a high stick, just missed on a semi-breakaway, before rounding the net and delivering the hit on Stepan along the boards.

"Right there I just had the opportunity to finish my check and that's what I did," said Lauzon. "I just went there and I tried to finish my check on the player with a little bit of edge. And when I have the opportunity to finish the check, I finish it. I haven't seen the hit."

Arizona scored just once during the five-minute major, grabbing a 1-0 lead on Phil Kessel's tally at 3:26 of the second period. Cassidy did not believe the check warranted a match penalty, comparing it to a hit on Charlie McAvoy by Lawson Crouse early just moments later that was only assessed a minor penalty.

"I don't know the exact factors of a hit to the head. Is it unsuspecting? Injury? That's the only discussion I had with the official," said Cassidy. "He was adamant that the player was out. I was like, 'Well, OK, he got hurt but he's in the game. He's not out, out. There was a bit of a difference of opinion on that. At the end of the day, that's what they called.

"I thought there was a very, very, very similar hit on McAvoy right after that that went a different direction. Again, that'll be up to them now, the league. I think they tend to look at those after the fact and we'll see what happens."

John Moore appeared to have blocked a shot in the final minutes of the game, leaving his status for Sunday's matinee against Detroit in question. And with a possible suspension for Lauzon lingering, the Bruins may need to call up a player from Providence.

"I have to get an update on that…I saw him walking around after; he seems fine, but that's a bit of a concern depending on what happens with Lauzon," said Cassidy. "We expect [Brandon] Carlo, [away from the team due to a personal matter], to meet us tonight in Detroit, so we'll have a healthy body there assuming travel is on time."

Video: Cassidy talks to media after Saturday's home win

Rask Sets Record 

Tuukka Rask made 29 saves in the victory to extend his home point streak to 18 games at 12-0-6. That is a new club record for a home point streak from the start of a season by a goaltender, eclipsing Gilles Gilbert's 16-0-1 mark in 1973-74.

"Tuukka was real good again," said Cassidy. "I thought he was tracking pucks well. I liked his puck handling. He seems to be very dialed in to when he gets it, wants it, play it, and move it and get it to the right spots and get us going on the breakouts so we can play fast. I like all those things about his game.

"First and foremost, he stops the puck, but I like that he's into it with the puck play, seems to be a lot more invested into that part of it this year and I think it's helped our team."

Video: ARI@BOS: Rask uses glove to stymie Dvorak

Chara Honored

Before the game, the Bruins feted long-time captain Zdeno Chara with a ceremony marking his 1,500th NHL game and his 1,000th game in Black & Gold. The 42-year-old was presented with an engraved gold stick and custom painting by Bruins president Cam Neely, as well as a watch, a special book with memories from past teammates and staff members, and a family vacation to a destination of his choosing from the Bruins players.

"I feel extremely proud," said Chara, who was accompanied by his wife, Tatiana, daughter, Elliz, and sons, Ben and Zack. "There were a lot of emotions and everybody did such an amazing job to make it as nice as it was. I was extremely happy to have my family there, especially my wife who has made so many sacrifices over the course of my career. I could not be happier to have her there with me and to be a source of knowledge.

"I am standing there, but I am representing so many other people that helped me along the way and without their support I would not be able to play for so long."

The ceremony also included a video montage with fellow captains from around the NHL - including Washington's Alex Ovechkin, Tampa's Steven Stamkos, and Chicago's Jonathan Toews - offering up their congratulations.

"Most of those guys I have battled pretty hard against, but it just shows that NHL and the players are very respectful," said Chara. "We battle each other and play hard against each other, but at the end of the day we know what the game is all about and we have to do our jobs. Once we take the gear off, we are just humans and we support each other."

Video: ARI@BOS: Chara honored for 1,500 career NHL games

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