Duchene lifts Avalanche over Bruins 3-2
BOSTON (AP) — Things have turned around quickly for Matt Duchene.
The Colorado center broke a tie in the third period with his sixth goal in five games and the Avalanche beat the Boston Bruins 3-2 on Thursday night.
Duchene also had an assist. He had just one goal in his first 11 games this season.
“I knew that if I just stuck with it, stayed positive and didn’t grip the stick too much, eventually they would start going in,” Duchene said. “I didn’t think it would be like this, but I’ll take it for sure.”
The Bruins broke a club record by losing to Colorado at home for the eighth straight time and haven’t beaten the Avalanche in Boston since 1998. Ironically, Colorado coach Patrick Roy was in net for that game, and eventual Avalanche defenseman Ray Bourque was still the Bruins captain. Boston had previously gone winless at home seven times against both Montreal and Detroit.
“I thought in the third period, one team was more determined than the other,” Bruins coach Claude Julien said. “This was a game in our building that we should have won.”
Boston fell to 1-5-1 at home this season and lost for the fourth time in five games.
“Talk is cheap. There is a fine line between winning and losing and the momentary lapses make the difference,” McQuaid said.
Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog received a match penalty at 5:46 of the second period for an illegal hit to the head of Bruins forward Brad Marchand. After slumping over on the ice for a few seconds, Marchand calmly stood, skated over to Landeskog and sucker punched him in the face. Marchand received a minor penalty and Landeskog is automatically suspended the next game, pending an NHL review.
“I tried to let up and then I tried to skate up and apologize and tell him I didn’t mean to come across and ... obviously he wasn’t hurt with that sucker punch,” Landeskog said. “I’m happy he didn’t get hurt. I feel like the principle point of contact was the shoulder.”
Chara scored his first career goal against Colorado 72 seconds into the game after keeping in a clearing attempt by Tyson Barrie.
Reto Berra made 25 saves, and Colorado won back-to-back road games for the first time this season after beating Philadelphia on Tuesday night.
Zdeno Chara and Ryan Spooner scored in the first to give Boston a 2-0 lead, but Carl Soderberg and Francois Beauchemin scored to tie it 2-2 later in the period.
Soderberg, a former Bruin, scored when he converted a feed from Blake Comeau to beat Tuukka Rask with 7:52 left in the first.
Beauchemin tied it with 29 seconds remaining.
Spooner gave the Bruins a power-play goal for the eighth straight game.
Rask made 27 saves and is now winless in five starts against the Avalanche.
“I think it’s mental,” Rask said. “We are making mistakes and its costing us games. Sometimes you squeeze the stick too hard and it doesn’t get better, it gets worse.”
Bruins defenseman Dennis Seidenberg made his season debut and returned after missing seven weeks. ... Berra has allowed four goals in his three starts in place of Semyon Varlamov, who is recovering from a groin injury. ... Boston signed 2015 first-round picks Jake DeBrusk and Zach Senyshyn to entry-level contracts. Boston has now signed all three of its first-round picks from this year, including Jakub Zboril. ... Iginla tied Peter Stastny for 37th on the all-time scoring list with an assist. ... Avalanche defenseman Erik Johnson recorded an assist for his 200th career point.