Bruins-Maple Leafs: Boston Continues Hot Streak at Home

Greg MalinContributor IDecember 19, 2008

The Garden held a shooting gallery last night in Boston.

The Bruins opened last night's game with fire in their step, scoring just 36 seconds into the game.

That was the kinda of night it was, with eight goals in the second period and 12 total.

The Bruins won the game 8-5, but have to be worried about giving up five goals against—the most all season.

Holding a 5-1 lead in the second period, Boston gave up three uncharacteristic goals.

The score after two periods was 6-5 Boston. Claude Julien replaced struggling goalie Tim Thomas with Manny Fernandez to start the third. 

Toronto is a team that has given Boston fits this season, being the only team to go into Boston and win in regulation. Toronto's head coach Ron Wilson stressed the importance of an early advantage: "It was obviously a good effort to get back in the game, but when you get down that many goals, it's tough."

The Boston power play was red hot, going four for six. Three came off the stick of David Krejci, who finished the game with his first career hat trick—and an impressive goal that made Curtis Joseph look silly.  Krejci took the back down the left slot and pulled the puck to his backhand, away from Joseph. With his body going around the net, he put the puck past Joseph on the short side.

Toronto were the recipient of two Bruins hat tricks this season. The other one was delivered by Blake Wheeler on the sixth of November. 

The Bruins received the assistance of Marco Sturm, who hadn't played since November 17 due to concussion-like symptoms. Sturm scored the Bruins' first goal just 36 seconds into the game.

Later in the the period, Sturm was hit into the boars in the corner and left the game with what appeared to be a lower-body injury.

With the win Boston improves to 22-5-4, and remains atop the Eastern Conference with 48 points. Toronto falls to 12-13-6 for 30 points. With the win, the Bruins have won 12 straight games at home and snapped the modest three game winning streak of the Leafs. 

Phil Kessel continued his hot scoring streak with two more goals, extending his streak to 16 games. In those 16 games, Kessel has tallied 14 goals to go along with 11 assists for a total of 25 points. With his second goal, Kessel reached the 100-point plateau. 

Marc Savar and Michael Ryder accounted for the other two Boston goals. Pavel Kubina, Alexei Ponikarovsky, Nik Antropov, Mikhail Grabovski, and Jason Blake had goals for Toronto. 

The Bruins look to continue their winning streak at home on Saturday when Carolina comes to town. After that, the Bruins have a five-game road trip starting Sunday in St. Louis. 

Three Stars of the game:

1. David Krejci

2. Phil Kessel

3. Marc Savard