For the second time is less than a week, forward Milan Lucic
came up big for the Bruins in the moments where they’ve needed their power forward the most.
|Milan Lucic and Lightning forward Eric Brewer have at it midway through the second period. |
Last night, as the Bruins returned home to TD Garden and defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning 2-1, Lucic scored the game-winning goal for the second time in six days.
The goal, Lucic’s 28th of the season, came with less than four minutes to play in the game. At a moment where it seemed nearly all the players on the ice, excluding the big winger, were sprawled across the TD Garden surface, Lucic was able to step and bang home the winner.
] gave it to me on the half (wall), on my wing there in our own zone and it was funny. I looked up and there was no one around me so I just tried to create some speed,” Lucic explained. “And [David Krejci
] had a lot of speed coming so I knew I could try and maybe put it underneath the defenseman’s stick and that’s what kind of happened there.
“And it just kept going in the corner and I just kept going with it, kept going with it, and I did a quick turn there and fed [Nathan Horton
]. And initially I thought that shot went in then all of a sudden everyone was laying on the ice including their goalie and I was just hanging out waiting to see where the puck was going to come.
“It came out and good thing the ref didn’t blow it early. And I was able to pounce on it and get that goal.”
The goal, in addition to defenseman Steven Kampfer’s second period tally, gave the Bruins their seventh consecutive win, but Lucic said the most important thing was getting the victory at home after their 6-0 road trip.
“The first one back is always the toughest and I think we played the same way. All twenty guys did what they needed to do,” Lucic said.
It’s not just scoring goals that have been the key to Lucic’s stand out season. The first star of last night’s game also brought his physical style of play to the ice, and fought Lightning forward Eric Brewer in the second period.
“It was [to] try to get things going," Lucic said of the bout. "There was a couple scrums in there where he was involved and what not. It’s just part of the game,”
Lucic is enjoying the best statistical season of his young career. Through 62 games, he has 28-19-47 totals and a plus-23. Lucic credits much of this season’s success to his linemates and last night, said they weren’t going to leave the ice without a goal.
“Obviously, we felt like we had our chances throughout the game,” Lucic said of his line with Horton and Krejci. “I hit the crossbar there, Horty had a couple chances there in the first. The puck kind of jumped on him a bit, and even in the second there he had that breakaway.
“But…we were determined to not come out of this game empty-handed as a line. And that’s what we need to do. We need to step up and play big no matter who it is.”
Step up they have. The top line has produced three game winners in the last seven games, and picked up a critical two points for Boston last night.
The victory propelled the Bruins into sole possession of second place in the Eastern Conference.
“It feels good definitely,” Lucic said of sitting in second place. “We knew coming into this game it was a fight for that second spot in the conference. And we knew they played last night, hard fought game against New Jersey and we didn’t (play).
“So we wanted to make sure we came out and gave everything we had, and I think definitely we got to keep pushing for more. We’re having a lot of fun right now, we’re creating a lot and like I said we just got to keep pushing for more.”
That’s just what they’ll do when Lucic and the B’s take on the Pittsburgh Penguins Saturday night in a 7 p.m. tilt.