BOSTON — Sidney Crosby & Co. were no match for the Bruins in their latest visit to TD Garden.
The Bruins handed the failing Pittsburgh Penguins a 3-0 defeat Wednesday night, Pittsburgh’s seventh loss in its last nine games.
On a night when Boston struggled offensively for long stretches, Tuukka Rask led the way, stopping 34 shots to earn his fourth shutout of the season. It was the latest in a string of excellent performances from the Bruins goaltender, who has allowed one goal or fewer in each of his last four starts.
IT WAS OVER WHEN…
Ryan Spooner potted an empty-netter on the power play with 2:43 remaining in the third period. Patrice Bergeron and Loui Eriksson assisted on the tally, which sealed the win for the B’s.
HE’S STILL GOT IT
The first goal of the night came from an unlikely source.
Max Talbot, who entered Wednesday with zero points to his credit this season, lit the lamp against his old team at the 9:52 mark of the first period.
The goal was Talbot’s first in a Bruins uniform. The 31-year-old forward, who has ridden the Boston-to-Providence express several times this season, had gone without one since Feb. 28, when he potted his final goal as a member of the Colorado Avalanche.
Adam McQuaid and Jimmy Hayes, who initiated the sequence with a hit in the neutral zone, were credited with assists.
MORE FROM THE BOTTOM SIX
A fourth-liner scored the Bruins’ first goal. The third line produced the second.
Spooner threw a pass in front that deflected off goalie Jeff Zatkoff, off a defenseman and off the shaft of Hayes’ stick before bouncing over the goal line.
The goal was upheld following a video review, snapping a 15-game goal drought for Hayes, who had gone without one since Nov. 5. He’d also managed just one point during that span.
Spooner now has six points (three goals, three assists) in his last five games.
Boston led 2-0 after two periods despite being outshot 18-4 in the second and failing to record a shot on goal for the final 15 minutes of the frame.
SCARY MOMENT FOR McQUAID
McQuaid took a shot off the face midway through the first period.
The Bruins defenseman quickly got to his feet but immediately skated off the ice and exited down the tunnel. He returned just a few minutes later but logged just 13:44 of ice time in the win.
Alex Khokhlachev made his first appearance for the Bruins since Nov. 5 after being recalled from the American Hockey League earlier in the day. He lined at left wing on Boston’s fourth line and recorded one shot on goal in 7:10 of ice time.
These teams will square off again Friday, when Boston visits the Consol Energy Center.
Thumbnail photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports Images