BOSTON - OCTOBER 21: Michael Ryder #73 of the Boston Bruins celebrates a goal by Zdeno Chara #33 (not shown) at 19:44 of the third period against the Washington Capitals at the TD Garden on October 21 2010 in Boston Massachusetts. The Bruins defeated the Capitals 4-1. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Bruins Complete Home-And-Home Sweep Over Capitals With 4-1 Win In Boston

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Bruins' Special Teams Dominate

Whether it was stellar goaltending on the penalty kill or their own power play lighting the lamp, Stanley Cup of Chowder says the Bruins put it all together tonight:

The Bruins rode the stellar goaltending of Tim Thomas and took advantage of power play opportunities to cruise to a 4-1 win over the Washington Capitals in their home opener at TD Garden. Tim Thomas, who was virtually flawless aside from one poor clearing pass that led to Washington’s lone goal, stopped 38 pucks to earn his 4th straight victory. The Bruins scored 3 of their 4 goals on the power play tonight as Michael Ryder, Nathan Horton, and Zdeno Chara all recorded power play markers.


Caps Power Play Outage Continues

Japers’ Rink worries about the Capitals failing power play and wonders when Mike Green will be back:

It’s somewhat shocking that we’re seven games into the season and we’re still talking about the power play’s failure to connect, but there it is. Another rough night with the extra man goes in the books, as what was once a strength has now apparently become a weakness. When Mike Green was healthy it seemed like the power play was starting to come back to life; with him out, you start to see just how much they miss him.


Bruins Complete Home-And-Home Sweep Over Capitals With 4-1 Win

Boston, MA (Sports Network) - Tim Thomas continued his resurgence between the pipes with 38 saves, helping the Boston Bruins roll to a 4-1 win over the Washington Capitals in their opener at TD Garden.

Thomas, who struggled in 2009-10 after winning the Vezina Trophy the season before, has been in net during Boston's four-game winning streak, allowing just three goals on 136 shots.

Nathan Horton, Zdeno Chara and Michael Ryder each scored on the power play, while Jordan Caron added another tally for the Bruins, who took the home-and- home series against the reigning Presidents' Trophy winners.

Semyon Varlamov, in his first start of the year, yielded all four goals on 34 shots for Washington, which had won four in a row before losing to Boston, 3-1, on Tuesday. Jason Chimera scored the lone goal in defeat.

Caps forward Matt Hendricks was whistled for tripping late in the opening period, and the Bruins scored with the man-advantage. Patrice Bergeron slid a pass from the point to Ryder on the left doorstep and the forward roofed a wrister with 27.5 seconds left.

Early in the second, Bergeron's no-look backhand feed from behind the net hit Caron on the stick, resulting in a snap shot that went over Varlamov's left shoulder 2:22 into the period.

On the power play later in the stanza, Horton let a shot fly between the circles that skidded through the goaltender's pads with 7:44 remaining.

Thomas, who stopped 13 shots in both the first and second periods, came out of the net midway through the third and it cost him. Chimera intercepted Thomas' attempted clearing pass and put one into the back of the unoccupied net.

That was all the Capitals got, however, and Boston killed off a late penalty before sealing the win on a one-timer from Chara in the final minute.

Washington had killed off all 25 of its penalties this season before giving up Ryder's goal in the first...The Caps had won their previous three trips to Boston...Tuukka Rask has not been in net since losing Boston's season-opener to Phoenix on October 9...Washington went 0-for-4 on the power play, while Boston converted 3-of-4 chances on the man advantage.


Bruins Go For Home-And-Home Sweep Over Caps To Go With Fourth Straight Win

(Sports Network) - The Boston Bruins will aim for a fourth straight win and a home-and-home sweep of the Washington Capitals when they host tonight's game at TD Garden.

Tonight's contest is actually the home opener for Boston, which began its regular season with a pair of games in the Czech Republic against the Phoenix Coyotes. The Bruins have played two games since returning to North America, posting a victory in New Jersey on Saturday before notching a win over the Capitals Tuesday in the nation's capital.

Tim Thomas stopped 35-of-36 shots and Milan Lucic added a goal and one assist as Boston downed Washington, 3-1, at Verizon Center. David Krejci posted a goal and a helper and Matt Hunwick also tallied for the Bruins.

"We have a pretty good balance in all of our lines. What we have seems to be working," Bruins head coach Claude Julien said.

Thomas has started the last three games for Boston and is 3-0 with an amazing 0.67 goals-against average and .979 save percentage. The former Vezina Trophy winner could get the start over Tuukka Rask again tonight. Rask won the starting job from Thomas last season, but hasn't played since losing Boston's season-opener to Phoenix on Oct. 9.

This evening's test starts a three-game homestand for the Bruins, who were 18-17-6 as the host in 2009-10. Boston will face the New York Rangers on Friday before closing the residency next Thursday against Toronto.

The Capitals, meanwhile, will try to get back in the win column after having their four-game winning streak snapped on Tuesday. The loss to the Bruins was Washington's first setback since dropping its season-opener on the road to Atlanta.

Marcus Johansson notched his first NHL goal in the recent setback for the Bruins. Michal Neuvirth took the loss, although he was pulled after playing nearly 13 minutes and allowing two goals on seven shots. Semyon Varlamov yielded one score on 14 shots the rest of the way.

"We did a lot of good things except convert. ... When [the Bruins] get a lead they are tough to beat," Capitals head coach Bruce Boudreau said.

Varlamov, who was sidelined with a groin injury to begin the year, is expected to get his first start of the season tonight as Neuvirth is questionable for the game with flu-like symptoms.

Caps centerman Boyd Gordon is questionable tonight with an undisclosed injury, while defenseman Mike Green is expected to miss his third straight game with a stinger.

Boston has won two straight against the Capitals after dropping the previous four encounters. Washington has still taken seven of 10 overall from the Bruins and has won the last three meetings in Beantown.

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