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Video: Bruins beat Rangers in Nash’s return

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There was some good news for the New York Rangers on Tuesday.

They generated a 44-22 shot disparity against the Boston Bruins and Rick Nash returned to action. Despite that, the Boston Bruins won 2-1:

Note: you know things are getting a little frosty in New York when fans give a “Bronx cheer” to Henrik Lundqvist.

Sabres get permission to speak with Bruins assistant GM

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Pat LaFontaine (pictured) and the Buffalo Sabres have received permission from Boston to speak with Bruins assistant GM Jim Benning, according to a wide variety of sources, including CSNNE.com.

Numerous reports indicate that Benning joins the following list of candidates: Jason Botterill, Rick Dudley and Paul Fenton. The CBC’s Elliotte Friedman points out that Benning, Botterill and Dudley have some connections to the Buffalo organization.

(For more on Botterill, click here.)

CSNNE.com points out that Benning came over to Boston in 2006 after serving scouting duties with the Sabres. The Boston Globe’s Fluto Shinzawa tweets that Benning was in Buffalo when they drafted players including Dennis Wideman and Daniel Paille.

Friedman provides some insight, asking how Benning would feel if the Sabres believe that their rebuild can be a quick one:

I’d love to hear Benning’s answer to this question. His playing career was hurt when Toronto Maple Leafs rushed him (with Fred Boimistruck and Bob McGill) in 1981. He is probably the least known of the candidates. But it was a huge loss (and Boston’s gain) when he left during the Tom Golisano era. Benning has some very big fans in the scouting community. “Do not sleep on his chances,” one source said.

Interesting.

Get your game notes: Bruins at Rangers

Johnny Boychuk, Derek Dorsett, Gregory Campbell
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Tonight on NBCSN, it’s the New York Rangers hosting the Boston Bruins starting at 7:30 p.m. ET. Following are some game notes, as compiled by the NHL on NBC research team:

— Since 2007-08, the Rangers and Bruins have met 23 times during the regular season. Eighteen of those games were decided by one goal (including two in overtime and five in a shootout). Six of those games ended with a 1-0 score. New York won 14 of the 23 meetings (14-7-2) while outscoring Boston 48-43. (Note: Including the 2013 Eastern Conference Semifinal series, 21 of their last 28 meetings have been decided by one goal.)

— Over the weekend, the Rangers became only the second team in NHL history to split two games on consecutive days, both by a 1-0 score line (def. Montreal on Nov. 16, lost to Los Angeles on Nov. 17), The 1999-2000 Sabres (def. Ottawa on Jan. 28, 2000, lost to Boston on Jan. 29, 2000) were the first. Former Rangers goalie, Martin Biron, tended the goal for Buffalo in both games. (Elias Sports Bureau)

— Since allowing goals on five consecutive opposition power plays in late-October, the Bruins have killed off 32 consecutive penalties, their longest PK streak since Mar. 7-25, 1999 (also 32 straight). The longest PK streak of the 2013-14 season is 35 straight, by the Capitals, Oct. 12-Nov. 2.

— The Rangers’ Henrik Lundqvist, who is expected to make his 28th consecutive start vs. Boston (dating back to Jan. 13, 2007), has the best regular-season home record vs. the Bruins among all active goaltenders with at least 10 appearances. (Elias Sports Bureau)

source:

— Patrice Bergeron is expected to suit up in his 600th NHL game, all with the Bruins. Only 15 other forwards have represented the historic franchise (90th season) in as many regular-season games.

— Loui Eriksson has an active six-game point streak (two goals, five assists). If he registers a point tonight, he will tie David Krejci for the longest point streak by a Bruins player this season.

— For no team does scoring the game’s first goal affect the eventual outcome more than the Rangers. They are 9-1-0 (.900) when scoring first, and 1-9-0 (.100) when allowing the first goal.

— Bruins defensemen have scored 25% of their team’s goals this season (14 of 56), putting the team up near the top of the league in blueline scoring. Torey Krug’s six goals equal or eclipse the combined goal output of 11 other teams’ defensive corps. The league leaders in goals from defensemen:

source:

Bruins beat Canes, bump Marchand to fourth line

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The Boston Bruins defeated the Carolina Hurricanes in Cam Ward’s return to action on Monday, taking it 4-1.

This snaps a three-game road skid for the Bruins, which was about the only way they haven’t been climbing lately; they’ve now won five of their last six games.

Boston’s lesser known forwards played well tonight, with Carl Soderberg and Reilly Smith pitching in a goal and an assist apiece. Smith, 23, is quietly making the Tyler Seguin trade look a little more even for Boston with a solid 13 points in 20 contests.

Speaking of Seguin, his former running mate continues to face ups and downs. Brad Marchand was demoted to the fourth line for Jordan Caron, with CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty arguing that it was more about Marchand’s struggles than Caron’s successes.

Ward wasn’t able to get the win for Carolina, but the Hurricanes are likely just glad to see the 29-year-old come back. He stopped 26 out of 29 shots.

One other promising sign for the ‘Canes: Tuomo Ruutu scored his first goal of 2013-14. If he can approach the form he showed in healthier days, Carolina might have a better chance of rising above its mediocre status (8-9-4).

Bruins dress Caron, scratch Thornton on Monday

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The Boston Bruins tweaked their lineup for Monday’s game against the Carolina Hurricanes, substituting Jordan Caron for Shawn Thornton.

It was a performance instead of injury-related move, as Thornton (pictured) is a healthy scratch tonight.

Neither forward has put up big numbers this year. Thornton, 36, has two goals in 19 games while Caron, 23, has one tally in nine contests.

This is a minor tweak, but some believe that Thornton is one of the league’s better fourth-line players, for whatever that’s worth.