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Bruins tie game late, defeat Ducks in shootout

by Matt Kalman /

BOSTON -- The Anaheim Ducks' lengthy road trip was rolling in the right direction for three games until they ran into the Boston Bruins on Thursday.

Boston's Zdeno Chara tied the game with 2:50 left in the third period, Jarome Iginla scored the only goal of the shootout, and the Bruins snapped a two-game losing streak with a 3-2 win at TD Garden.

The Ducks, playing their sixth game of an eight-game, 15-day road trip, had won three in a row. They fell to 3-3-0 on the trip and 10-3-1 overall.

The Bruins (8-4-0) were able to shake off a slow start (they had one shot on goal in the first period) to earn two points and a split of their back-to-back that started with a 3-2 road loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday.

"I think we worked hard," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "And when you look at how we were in the second period, we got a lot of offensive-zone time in there. I thought we had some chances. I thought, again, that goal in the last 20 seconds of the second [period] would've probably broken a lot of teams' backs. It didn't break ours. We came back out in the third and fought. I'd rather give my team credit for this one than say we're fortunate.

"I'm not going to stand here and say we're playing great hockey, because as I mentioned before, it's a game of momentum and right now the momentum's not quite where we'd like it to be. We played a tough game yesterday in Pittsburgh. And I think it took its toll on us a little bit. And for us to come out here and play a gritty game and battle right to the end to win this one against a team that was fresh and waiting for us here, if anything I'd say it was a real gutsy effort on our part."

Chara scored on the power play from in front of the Anaheim goal after a pass across the slot by David Krejci. Defenseman Torey Krug had just moved the puck down low. The Bruins failed to score on their only prior power play in the game.

"Yeah, at that time that's probably the last opportunity, man-advantage opportunity that you're going to get, so you have to give all you have," Chara said. "We made a really simple play, just won the faceoff, shot on net, deflection, and David made a really nice play to me back door and just put it in the open net."

Jonas Hiller (Anaheim) and Tuukka Rask (Boston) made 21 saves apiece through 65 minutes. In the shootout, Iginla scored as the Bruins' second shooter. Rask made sure that stood up with one save. Nick Bonino lost the handle without getting off a shot, and Ryan Getzlaf hit the post for the Ducks.

Though they wanted two points, the Ducks will accept the one and move on to their next game, against the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday.

"I think so," Ducks forward Corey Perry replied when asked about this being a "good" loss. "I mean you can't get too high and you can't get too low. You get your one point, and it's unfortunate we didn't get the second one, but you take this and you build off of it. I think we did a lot of good things, and we just could tighten up in a couple of areas."

It didn't take the Ducks long to continue their recent fine play, scoring 1:52 into the game. Dustin Penner, back in the lineup after a five-game absence (concussion), intercepted a Carl Soderberg pass at the blue line to get the scoring play started.

Penner sent the puck toward the Boston net, where it was knocked down by Mathieu Perreault then passed to the high slot for Devante Smith-Pelly. He fired a one-timer past Rask for a 1-0 lead on the first shot on goal of the game.

The Ducks added four shots on net before the period ended. The Bruins didn't reach Hiller until 1:19 remained on the clock, when Chara found the net with a slap shot from the blue line.

Soderberg made up for his first-period miscue with his first NHL goal. Ryan Spooner, playing his first NHL game of the season, dug the puck out of the Boston zone and chipped it ahead to Chris Kelly at the red line. Kelly one-touched it ahead to Soderberg at the blue line, and the Swede got behind the defense and slid a backhand under Hiller at 12:45.

The Bruins shook up their third line by inserting Spooner and scratching Jordan Caron. Kelly moved out to the wing, and the maneuvers paid off.

"It gave us a little bit more," Julien said of that line. "I mean, it scored a goal. I'm not sure that [Kelly] is best utilized on the wing as he is at center, but you know the one thing I thought is, [Spooner] did give us some speed on that line and created some of that stuff. You know, for a first time together, I think they were OK."

The Ducks took a 2-1 lead with 20.9 seconds left in the second period. Perreault won a draw from Gregory Campbell, and Cam Fowler passed the puck from the right wall back to Smith-Pelly at the right point. Smith-Pelly made a pass to the dot, where Perreault and Campbell were tied up until Perreault broke free for a spinning shot that beat Rask inside the far post.

After Chara's late goal sent the game to overtime, Boston outshot Anaheim, 4-0.

"Well, the guys are disappointed," Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau said. "They want to win every game. That's why the record is what it is right now, and they're not going to be happy with a shootout loss. We wanted that extra point, so I would expect nobody to be happy."

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