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Krejci Stars in Bruins 6-1 Victory Over Detroit

Centerman (two goals) hitting his stride during the stretch run

by Eric Russo @NHLBruins /

BOSTON - David Krejci acknowledged the difficulties he might have had earlier in the season attempting such a slippery move around an opposing defenseman.

At that time, Boston's longtime centerman was fresh off offseason hip surgery. He was still building up his game to its rightful place.

So when Krejci evaded defenseman Danny DeKeyser, picked up a loose puck, and soared into the zone to beat Red Wings goalie Jared Coreau, it was clear the pivot was back up to speed. The goal was his first of two on the night and opened the floodgates in Boston's 6-1 victory over Detroit Wednesday night at TD Garden.

"I don't even think I would try it," Krejci said of his nifty escape of Detroit's blueliner. "I feel good in general. I feel like I've got another gear. So, keep working hard. And like I said, credit goes to my linemates. I've been playing with some good players. So, it's been fun."

Video: DET@BOS: Krejci beats the defense for slick goal

Krejci (two goals, one assist) centered newcomer Drew Stafford on the left and David Pastrnak on the right. It was only the second game the trio has been together, but it appears the chemistry is growing fast.

All three players potted goals on Wednesday, while combining for seven points. Interim head coach Bruce Cassidy believes Krejci, who was a plus-4 against the Wings, has elevated his game since being paired with Pastrnak over the last dozen games.

"I would say that having Pastrnak on his wing - he's probably enjoyed that. Who wouldn't?" said Cassidy. "I think Krech's strength is a transition game most of the time, when he's making plays through the neutral zone or small ice plays. So when we have to do it on the forecheck I think Pasta has really helped him get some pucks back.

"But we've allowed him to play to his strength and most nights he's been very good. And tonight it was nice to see him score, too, because he's generally pass first.

"And he'd probably tell you he could have had four tonight…so it was good for him I think he needed it."

Video: Krejci, Marchand lift Bruins to 6-1 home victory

Krejci now has four goals and three assists over his last eight games and seven goals and eight assists over his last 15. The further he gets away from the surgery, the more confident and loose his game is becoming.

"I knew it was going to come," said Krejci, who also had hip surgery in 2009. "I was there before. The same thing happened last time. I started feeling good - it was an Olympic year, and at the [2010] Olympics, I started feeling really good, came back, and it went well.

"So, I knew it might take a little bit longer than October or November. But, I'm glad it's here now and I can just focus on the game."

Krejci's first tally came midway through the first period. Stafford - who notched his first goal as a Bruin - threw a cross-ice pass to Krejci through the neutral zone, who slipped around DeKeyser and fired one through Jared Coreau for a 1-0 Bruins lead.

Tallies from Brad Marchand - he also had two goals - and Stafford followed over the next 2 minutes, 27 seconds, forcing Coreau to the bench and setting up Krejci's second of the evening.

Video: DET@BOS: Stafford snipes home first goal with Bruins

After a Dylan Larkin turnover in the slot, Krejci picked up the puck and beat Petr Mrazek to up the Bruins' lead to 4-0 with just over three minutes to go in the opening frame.

"That was very important. I thought we had a really strong start," said Krejci. "We scored [four] goals in the first period and pretty much controlled the game from there…we kept trying to always get the next one and that's what happened.

"So, we didn't sit back, we kept going forward, and we got rewarded with six goals tonight."

Krejci was also crucial to Boston's sixth goal. A faceoff win to the left of Mrazek - Krejci won 62% of his draws - trickled to Pastrnak, who spun and fired it past the Detroit netminder to give Boston a 6-1 lead only 34 seconds into the third period.

"He was all over today and he had a great game, I think," said Pastrnak, who extended his career-high seven-game point streak. "It was easy for me to follow him…he just had a great game, and hopefully we can keep going."

Video: DET@BOS: Krejci wires home second goal of the period

The performance from Krejci and his wingers elevated Boston to 9-3-0 since Cassidy took over behind the bench. And after a disappointing loss to Ottawa on Monday night, the victory over Detroit allowed the Bruins to avoid its first set of consecutive losses under Cassidy.

"Good teams, what they do, they respond well," said Krejci, who now has 18 goals and 28 assists this season. "We did that. We put a game behind us, we worked on some stuff, we looked at some video, and we had a good game."

The only thing missing for Krejci was a hat trick. But, in the end, his individual accolades are secondary.

"I was close a couple times," said Krejci. "But, you know, it is what it is. Obviously, it would be nice to get it. But, at the same time, like I said, it was a very important game for us, especially after the game in Ottawa; so, happy we got the two points."

Video: Krejci scores twice in 6-1 win over Detroit

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