BOSTON – The Bruins were hoping for a big boost from the return of Patrice Bergeron and David Backes to the lineup, and that’s exactly what they got in a solid 6-3 win over the Vancouver Canucks at TD Garden on Thursday night.
Bergeron finished with a goal and three assists and a plus-2 rating in the win, and it appeared his return to the Boston lineup was exactly what the doctor ordered for a hockey club in need of a little direction.
Vancouver actually scored the first goal of the game, but then the Bruins exploded for the next four goals in the first period including three power play goals courtesy of a five minute major boarding penalty on Erik Gudbranson. The mammoth Canucks D-man slammed Frank Vatrano from behind against the end boards, and David Pastrnak, Anders Bjork and David Krejci all tallied power play strikes within 1:37 of each other.
The Pastrnak score was the beauty of the bunch as he took the puck coast-to-coast through the teeth of the Vancouver penalty kill, and completely faked out Michael Del Zotto before snapping a forehand bid past Anders Nilsson.
Prior to the PP outburst, Derek Dorsett drew first blood for Vancouver on a wobbly bid from the slot and then Anders Bjork followed with his second NHL goal after tapping home the rebound of a Patrice Bergeron bid from the perimeter.
Brad Marchand teamed up with linemates Bergeron and Bjork for his fourth goal of the season to make it 5-1 in the second period, and then Vancouver managed to get a couple of goals from Thomas Vanek and Bo Horvat to make for an interesting final period.
Bergeron made certain that it was a happy ending for the Black and Gold by burying his first goal of the season and his fourth point of the night on a power play strike to ice the game. Anton Khudobin was strong stepping in for the injured Tuukka Rask and stopped 26-of-29 shots for his second victory of the season.