BOSTON - In the spirit of Thanksgiving weekend, here are some leftover thoughts to gobble up from the Bruins' 4-3 win over the Penguins at TD Garden on Friday afternoon.
Response time: Despite surrendering a two-goal lead, which included a controversial tying tally from the Penguins late in the second, the Bruins responded with a strong third period and hung on after David Pastrnak's breakaway tally just over five minutes into the frame. It was a strong retort against the two-time defending Stanley Cup champs.
"When you make turnovers like that against back-to-back Stanley Cup Champions, they're going to put it in your net," said Jake DeBrusk. "I thought that they gained some momentum, but we also pushed back as well. I thought that in the third period we really limited them. Kind of a board battle game and a neutral-zone game…it was nice to see."
Pastrnak snaps stretch: Pastrnak's winner snapped a six-game stretch without a goal for Boston's leading scorer (11-8-19).
"It's been slow the last couple of games offensively, but those games are going to come, but I'm not worrying about it," said Pastrnak. "Goals are going to come and offensive play, too."
Video: PIT@BOS: Pastrnak scores a slick breakaway goal
Krug returns: Torey Krug returned after missing three games with an upper-body injury and played a tad over 18 minutes, landing three shots on goal and blocking two shots. There was some uncertainty prior to the game as to whether the 26-year-old would be feeling well enough to go, leading the Bruins to dress seven defensemen out of caution.
"I took warmups like I normally do and just do the same thing, same routine," said Krug. "I had to test out what was bothering me, make sure it was ready to go and ultimately I felt pretty good."
DeBrusk keeps up: Jake DeBrusk picked up two more assists against the Pens to extend his points streak to three games. Since being a healthy scratch against Toronto on Nov. 11, the 21-year-old has points in four of the five games (2-4-6).
"Ever since I got scratched, I think that I've had some jump in all the games or at moments," said DeBrusk. "I think that level of confidence, and I'm also playing with great players. They open up lots of space for me…it's nice to get a reward, it's nice to get on the board, especially twice, in a game like this. I thought that we were coming along and we're just looking to build on it."
Video: Bruins speak to media after 4 straight wins
McAvoy's confidence continues to grow: Like he did on his nifty goal against the Kings in Los Angeles last week, 19-year-old Charlie McAvoy took control in the offensive zone against Pittsburgh. On Sean Kuraly's first-period tally, McAvoy circled the zone and zipped a pass through the slot to the winger, who fired a one-timer by Matt Murray for a 2-0 Bruins lead.
"I think you'll see more and more of his comfort level grow in those situations and you'll see more points come because of it and I think that's just Charlie," said Cassidy. "He's comfortable now, probably with where he is out here, 20 games, how much he's going to play, when he can go, when he can't.
"He's a very efficient player, that's why he can play those minutes. He can give us some of those plays, and we need him - especially now when you're missing a few offensive players up front, you need offense from the back end."
Video: PIT@BOS: Kuraly one-times a sweet dish from McAvoy
Doby rolls on: It was not Khudobin's sharpest game during his hot streak, but it got the job done for his fourth consecutive win to remain undefeated (7-0-2) in regulation this season. The 31-year-old made 17 stops on 20 shots, but his biggest came in the closing seconds of the third when he denied the tying goal on attempts from Phil Kessel and Patric Hornqvist.
"He didn't have as much work as he's had, and I think Doby almost gets better with volume," said Cassidy. "You've got to be careful where that volume is coming from, but listen, he's battled from start to finish every game he's been in. He wants to win. It's his makeup. Again, I was happy for him. Tonight, we scored a little more than we normally have for him, and that's what we needed to win."
Video: PIT@BOS: Khudobin comes up with clutch pad stop
Krejci gets on the board: David Krejci had a goal and an assist for his first points in the four games he's played since returning from an 11-game absence with an upper-body injury.
Video: PIT@BOS: Krejci buries fantastic dish from DeBrusk
Cehlarik leaves early: Peter Cehlarik limped off the ice during the second period, unable to put much weight on his left leg, and did not return. Cehlarik had assisted on Krejci's goal in the first period and has posted a 1-1-2 during his five games with the big club.
"I haven't gotten an update," Cassidy said after the game. "He didn't come back, so obviously that's not good news, and the way he went off the ice, but right now I have nothing to update. I'm sure by tomorrow we'll have a better idea on where he's at."