BOSTON - David Krejci had his first NHL hat trick and Phil Kessel scored twice to extend his point streak to an NHL-high 16 games as the Bruins, who nearly blew a four-goal lead, held on to beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 8-5 on Thursday night.
Marco Sturm, Marc Savard and Michael Ryder also scored for Boston, which won its 12th consecutive home game and its 12th in 14 games overall. Tim Thomas stopped 18 shots but left after two periods with the Bruins leading 6-5; they had led 5-1 with just over four minutes gone in the second period.
Manny Fernandez stopped all 13 shots he faced in the third period.
That was better than Vesa Toskala: he gave up two goals on five shots in the first 4:34 and was pulled for Curtis Joseph. The backup didn't have much more luck, allowing four goals on 10 shots in the second period and Toskala came back in for the third, when Boston took a 7-5 lead on Ryder's goal with 9:18 to play.
Krejci made it 8-5 with 4:16 left, bringing hats from the stands onto the ice.
Pavel Kubina, Alexei Ponikarovsky, Nik Antropov, Mikhail Grabovski and Jason Blake scored for the Leafs, who had won three in a row.
The Bruins took a 1-0 lead on the game's opening shift when Sturm, who missed the previous 12 games after sustaining a concussion, scored off a rebound 36 seconds into the game. Sturm left with 6:23 remaining in the first when he was hit along the boards. He grabbed his left knee as he was helped off and didn't return.
Boston made it 2-0 on Krejci's first of the game, a power-play goal that chased Toskala. The Leafs made it 2-1 before Boston pulled away in the second with three goals in 2:53.
Notes: Kessel's second goal gave him 100 career NHL points. ... The Bruins' last home loss came against Toronto, 4-2 on Oct. 23rd. ... Toskala started for the 28th time in Toronto's 31 games. ... Bruins rookie Blake Wheeler also had his first career hat trick against Toronto, on Nov. 6.