Bruins add breathing room in wild card race

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Bruins’ rookie David Pastrnak scored with 37 seconds remaining in overtime as Boston doubled up the Carolina Hurricanes 2-1.

Pastrnak finished with a goal and an assist.

The Bruins win gives them a three-point cushion on the Ottawa Senators in the wild card race. Boston is also just three points back of the Washington Capitals for the first wild card spot.

Boston has now won two straight after going six in a row without a win.

Ryan Spooner opened the scoring with his seventh of the season at 2:21 of the first period. Nathan Gerbe tied the game 1-1 with less than a minute remaining in the second.

Boston improved to 5-8-2 in the second half of back-to-backs after a 4-2 win over the New York Rangers on Saturday.

Tuukka Rask, who left Saturday’s game due to a migrane, made 30 saves to improve to 31-19-12 with the win.

Anton Khudobin stopped 28 shots in the loss.

The Bruins’ win officially eliminated both the New Jersey Devils and Philadelphia Flyers from postseason contention.

Bruins ruin Lundqvist’s return

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The Boston Bruins leave Saturday’s game with their own concerns regarding their top goalie, but they made life difficult for the New York Rangers’ returning No. 1 this afternoon.

After taking a 3-0 lead, the Bruins cruised to a 4-2 win that was probably more lopsided than the score indicated.

Again, plenty of thoughts revolve around Tuukka Rask’s status; the Bruins haven’t been particularly forthcoming regarding his condition. Niklas Svedberg was able to maintain Boston’s lead after taking over early in the second period, yet considering the Bruins’ thin grasp on a wild card spot (Ottawa can go right back ahead by beating the Toronto Maple Leafs tonight), this is a worrisome situation.

On the bright side, the Bruins looked strong for much of this game, as it would be unfair to blame the loss totally on a rusty Henrik Lundqvist.

(That said, it was clear that Lundqvist was rusty.)

The B’s place in the postseason is shaky – Ottawa can knock them back out of the wild card ranks by beating the lowly Toronto Maple Leafs tonight – but this is still a big win.

Note: An earlier version of this post mentioned that Boston’s win clinched for Montreal, but that is not true.

Bruins chalk Rask’s absence up to dehydration (Update)

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Update: It took a long time, but the Boston Bruins have good news: it sounds like Tuukka Rask is just fine.

Head coach Claude Julien believes that it was just matter of him not feeling well/being dehydrated.

***

While waiting for updates, many believed that Rask was having some, er, stomach issues. Since it’s not an injury, here are the jokes for the sake of fun:

Rask didn’t return to the game.

Bruins can’t hold Ducks off, suffer sixth loss in a row

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For much of Thursday’s game, it looked like the Boston Bruins would do just enough to beat the Anaheim Ducks. Instead, they suffered a bitter 3-2 OT loss, now their sixth straight defeat.

Simply put, the Ducks’ big guns ultimately made the difference. Corey Perry scored the game-tying goal with about 40 seconds remaining in the third period while Ryan Getzlaf nabbed the OT clincher.

(The Ducks noted that Getzlaf’s seven OT-winners stand as a club record.)

Bruins head coach Claude Julien has his beefs about Perry’s 2-2 tally, yet one wonders if the Bruins simply didn’t give themselves enough of a margin for error. The (rather stunning) numbers reveal that the Ducks finish out games with astounding proficiency:

David Krejci looked understandably tentative in his return to action, but he also made some nice plays, including picking up an assist. It wasn’t enough, yet he could be a key component down the stretch.

Some close calls may turn the knife a little deeper for the Bruins during this six-game skid. Counting tonight’s OT defeat, three of these setbacks could have been wins (two were in shootouts).

Could those three points end up being the difference? We’ll see. The only good news for Boston is that tonight was probably even rougher for the Ottawa Senators.

Boston fell just short tonight, and if the Bruins aren’t careful, that may just be the story of their 2014-15 season.

Marchand: If Bruins miss playoffs, ‘this is going to be a much different group next year’

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Brad Marchand knows there will be “consequences” if the Boston Bruins miss the playoffs.

“This is a team where we’re expected to win every year. It’s been that way for a while. There’s a lot of pressure on this group,” Marchand said, per CSN New England. “But with that comes pressure that you need to live up to it, and if not you’re forced to deal with the consequences.

“We understand that this is a big situation. If we don’t pull together then this is going to be a much different group next year, I’m sure. I don’t think anybody wants that. Hopefully we realize that, come together and allow this group to stay together.”

It’s an interesting comment, since much of the “consequences” talk during this frustrating Bruins season has focused on the futures of coach Claude Julien and GM Peter Chiarelli.

The Bruins have a handful of pending unrestricted free agents, including three members of the 2010-11 Stanley Cup champion roster, Daniel Paille, Gregory Campbell, and Adam McQuaid. All three veterans have had their struggles this season.

It’s even been speculated that Milan Lucic, under contract for one more season before he can become unrestricted, could be traded.

Related: Krejci ‘probable’ to return versus Ducks