Bruins

Wizards see Celtics as 'vulnerable'

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Wizards see Celtics as 'vulnerable'

BOSTON -- In less than a week, the young Washington Wizards have tested the veteran Boston Celtics in two down-to-the-wire contests despite playing without their scoring leader John Wall. On Saturday, the Celtics barely edged out an 89-86 win on the road. Four days later, the C's needed an extra five minutes in overtime to earn a 100-94 victory at TD Garden. 
The Wizards locker room had a tone of frustration following Wednesday's loss, knowing they had opportunities to turn the tables in both games. They had a game plan to take on the Celtics -- go, go, go.
We know they're vulnerable," said 19-year-old rookie Bradley Beal. "We know that they are an aggressive team, but they are a lot older then we are so we are going to try and wear them down. They have a decent bench and their bench comes in and gives them immediate scoring, everybody has the green light. So our plan is basically to wear them down and keep pushing the ball in transition and make sure our pick-and-roll defense is what it needs to be, especially on Paul Pierce.
While Pierce shot just 2-for-12 from the field on Wednesday (12 trips to the free throw line boosted his game total to 15 points), Rajon Rondo, often criticized for his offensive range, hit key jumpers. 
"We didn't want to let Paul Pierce get off and then KG (Kevin Garnett) get a lot of open jump shots, so we were running those guys off the line and being aggressive," said Martell Webster. "But you've got to give credit where credit is due. Rajon Rondo played big tonight, knocking down jumpshots. He's effective when he's doing that because he has an arsenal. His repertoire is a pass-first point guard, but if he's knocking down open jumpshots, they're a hard team to play."
The Celtics and Wizards do not meet again until April. By then, both teams will have had nearly an entire regular season to gel. Beal believes he and the younger Wizards will continue learn from their veteran teammates over the next few months and be able to test the C's in their season series finale. 
"We know the Celtics are a great team and we know that we have the potential to be a great team as well," he said. "So we are not going to back down from anybody. We are just going to keep competing.

Bruins blow three-goal lead, lose to Sabres in OT, 5-4

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Bruins blow three-goal lead, lose to Sabres in OT, 5-4

BOSTON – The Bruins had things set up for a solid win against an Atlantic Division doormat on Saturday night, but then they went and blew a three-goal second period lead and a two-goal third period lead en route to a deflating loss. 

Ryan O’Reilly scored during a wild scramble around the Boston net in the 3-on-3 overtime and the Bruins dropped a 5-4 overtime decision to Buffalo at TD Garden. So now the Bruins have lost to two of last year’s worst teams in the league, Colorado and Buffalo, and an expansion team within the first seven games of the season. 

The Bruins were all over the Sabres in the first period squeezing off 13 shots on net, and getting goals from David Pastrnak and Brad Marchand to get things going. The Pastrnak score was a clean-up job at the front of the net after Tim Schaller had crashed the net with the puck, and Marchand scored a goal just two seconds into a PP possession after Marco Scandella coughed a puck up right in front of the Buffalo net. 

Marchand struck again on the first shift of the second period when he snapped home a backhanded drop pass from Anders Bjork, and then Jason Pominville and Pastrnak traded scores to give the Bruins a comfortable three-goal lead. Chelmsford’s own Jack Eichel scored on the rebound of a Scandella shot to make it a two-goal game going into the final period of play, and Benoit Pouliot potted his first goal with the Sabres to make it really close down the stretch. 

Anton Khudobin and the Bruins tried to hold strong in the closing minutes of the third, but couldn’t overcome a shaky interference call on Brandon Carlo that ultimately led to a game-tying Evander Kane score after the PP had expired.