for this game

Bruins handle Leafs

Oct 21, 2011 - 4:20 AM
Boston, MA (Sports Network) - The Bruins finally played like defending Stanley Cup champions Thursday night, as Milan Lucic, Tyler Seguin and Zdeno Chara each had a goal and two assists to lift Boston over Toronto, 6-2.

Nathan Horton and Chris Kelly had a goal and an assist apiece for the Bruins, who improved to 3-4-0 on the young season.

Reigning Vezina Trophy winner Tim Thomas was sold in net, stopping 26-of-28 pucks fired his way.

David Steckel and Mikhail Grabovski scored and Jonas Gustavsson made 37 saves for the Leafs, who were dealt their first regulation loss of the season after starting 4-0-1.

Toronto opened the scoring at the 7:29 mark of the first period when Steckel accepted a pass in the high slot from Nazem Kadri and fired a wrister past Thomas on the glove side, giving his team a 1-0 lead.

Boston got even just over three minutes later, thanks to an ill-advised interference penalty to Matt Frattin that put the B's on the power play. With the man-advantage, David Krejci won an offensive zone faceoff back to Chara at the left point. Chara slid a pass along the blue line to Andrew Ference, who then slapped one toward the net that was stopped by Gustavsson, but Horton was on the doorstep to stuff the rebound home at 10:32 of the first stanza.

Boston struck again with the power play at 16:05 when Chara took a pass in the left circle from Ference and snapped one high to the short side past Gustavsson for a 2-1 lead.

The B's then jumped out to a two-goal lead when Kelly parked himself in front, took a pass from Lucic and backhanded it high in behind the Swedish netminder at 17:49, giving his team a 3-1 advantage.

After a scoreless second stanza, the Bruins made it 4-1 at the 2:08 mark of the final period with an excellent rush. Seguin intercepted the puck in the neutral zone, raced down the right wing -- leaving Leafs defenders in his wake -- before feeding Lucic, who tapped it into the empty net for a 4-1 lead.

"It was nice to see some of the guys that were kind of battling through it do well tonight," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "We got a lot of good things out of good players tonight."

The B's widened the lead even further at the 10:08 mark of the third with a great individual rush up the ice by Patrice Bergeron. The shifty forward picked up the puck in the defensive zone and skated up to the left circle before wristing one past Gustavsson to make it 5-1.

Seguin finished off the Bruins' offensive outburst when he accepted a perfect pass from Lucic in the slot and fired a wrist shot into the net at 11:43 of the final stanza

The Leafs' second goal of the game came off excellent positioning off the rush. Jake Gardiner picked up the puck in the neutral zone and moved down the left wing to the circle before finding Grabovski in front, who one-timed it in behind Thomas to cap the scoring.

"We didn't give Jonas much protection in front," Maple Leafs coach Ron Wilson said. "We just didn't have our legs, it's plain and simple."

Game Notes

Prior to Thursday's game, the Maple Leafs placed forward Colby Armstrong on injured reserve with a sprained ankle. Kadri was recalled from the Toronto Marlies of the AHL...The two Original Six teams met for the 640th time in their histories, with Boston holding a 279-255-98-8 advantage...Toronto went 0-for-4 with the man advantage, while Boston finished 2-for-5 on the power play...The Leafs will travel to Montreal to battle to Canadiens on Saturday, while Boston will welcome the San Jose Sharks to TD Garden, also on Saturday.