The Boston Bruins started 2018 the same way they ended 2017: winning.
Boston finished 2017 with 10 wins in 14 December games, and it began 2018 with an emphatic 5-1 win over a talented New York Islanders team Tuesday night at Barclays Center.
The first and fourth lines scored two goals apiece and B’s goalie Tuukka Rask continued to be stellar with 25 saves on 26 shots.
The Bruins improve to 22-10-6 with the win, while the Isles fall to 20-16-4.
Here’s how it all went down:
Danton Heinen gave the Bruins a 1-0 advantage at 8:17 of the first period with his 10th goal of the season. Riley Nash picked up the lone assist on the goal off a faceoff win.
As soon as the B’s took the lead, the Islanders responded right away as Jordan Eberle scored the equalizer with an impressive net-front deke just 13 seconds after Heinen’s tally. It was Eberle’s 14th goal of the campaign. Bruins defenseman Brandon Carlo’s mishandling of the puck allowed Eberle to take possession and score.
Patrice Bergeron regained the lead for the Bruins with a goal at 8:28 of the second period. Bergy made an impressive play to take the puck out of midair and bank it off Isles goalie Jaroslav Halak from a tight angle. Bergeron’s 12th goal of the season was assisted by Heinen and Brad Marchand.
The Bruins dominated the second period, particularly in terms of puck possession. Boston earned a 30-17 shot attempt advantage and a 16-8 edge in shots on goal during the frame. The Islanders didn’t show the level of effort and physicality required to win back possession from a well-structured, hard-working group of B’s forwards.
Marchand scored his 16th goal of the season to give the Bruins an extra cushion and a 3-1 lead with 10:56 left in the third period. The tally was assisted by David Pastrnak.
The fourth line of Sean Kuraly, Noel Acciari and Tim Schaller played a fantastic game, and their hard work was rewarded in the third period. Kuraly forced a turnover in the attacking zone and Schaller capitalized on the scoring chance to give the Bruins a commanding 4-1 lead.
Acciari later scored an empty-net goal.
The B’s host the Florida Panthers at TD Garden on Thursday night at 7 p.m. ET.
Thumbnail photo via Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports Images