Unhappy with his stagnant offense, Boston Bruins coach Pat Burns changed lines to start the third period. The move paid off in a big way.
The Bruins scored all five of their goals in the final period, including two by Sergei Samsonov in a six-minute span, and beat the struggling Montreal Canadiens 5-1 Friday.
"He was looking for something," forward Rob DiMaio said of Burns' move. "When he does that, guys realize he's not happy about something. The guys responded and we were off to the races."
Ray Bourque, Don Sweeney and Jason Allison also had third-period goals for the Bruins, who did all their scoring in the opening 12:19 of the final period en route to their fourth consecutive win.
"We weren't skating much in the first two periods," Burns said. "We were sort of hanging around."
Allison's goal reflected how bad things have been for Montreal, which has lost six of its last seven games.
With the Canadiens on a power play, DiMaio collected a loose puck in the Montreal zone along the right boards. Four Montreal players were in the area, but DiMaio retained control and sent a pass to a wide-open Allison, who beat goalie Jeff Hackett with a wrist shot from the slot to make it 4-1.
"I don't know what happened to them," said Boston goalie Byron Dafoe, who stopped 24 shots. "They just seemed to deteriorate."
Montreal, which has the worst record in the Northeast Division, is 1-3 since a six-player trade with Chicago on Nov. 16 that was supposed to inject some life into an injury-riddled team.
"We're getting a lot of luck, but its all bad," Canadiens coach Alain Vigneault said. "We're getting more and more injuries and we're having trouble sustaining the pace of the NHL."
| Montreal Canadiens' Martin Rucinsky (center) tumbles over goalie Byron Dafoe as Hal Gill looks on. (AP) |
Montreal's Vincent Damphousse reinjured his back and Patrice Brisebois suffered a rib injury.
Bourque's goal 76 seconds into the third period tied the game 1-1. He fired a blistering slap shot past Hackett from just inside the blue line.
Samsonov's first goal moved the Bruins ahead 2-1 just 5:24 later. After taking a pass just inside the left circle, he slipped a backhander inside the right post.
On his second goal, Samsonov batted Darren Van Impe's shot from the point down and past Hackett's stick side.
Hackett, acquired in the six-player trade with the Blackhawks, stopped 21 shots in his third start.
Saku Koivu, who missed the last 12 games with an abdominal strain, scored a second-period goal for Montreal.
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