BOSTON – After putting only five shots on goal in the first period, the Boston Bruins took aim against Vancouver goalie Roberto Luongo in the second and third.
Three of their shots got past Luongo and although only two of them counted for goals, that was more than enough offense for the Bruins to beat the slumping Canucks 3-1 on Tuesday night.
“The first period was a little bit of a tough period for us. I thought our puck management or how we move the puck around wasn’t great,” Boston coach Claude Julien said. “It wasn’t really sharp, but it got better in the second and third period and that made a big difference.”
Boston led 1-0 after the first on Milan Lucic’s goal despite being outshot 9-5. Jarome Iginla and Daniel Paille added goals in the second period for the Bruins, and Tuukka Rask kept the Canucks from rallying with several saves on short-handed opportunities that could have invigorated Vancouver.
The biggest was stopping Daniel Sedin on a breakaway, which led to Iginla’s goal that put Boston up 2-0 with 12:01 left in the second period.
“It’s always good when they get a chance and you make a save and then your team scores right after that,” Rask said. “That was a good sign.”
Rask made 27 saves against the road-weary Canucks, who were coming off a 2-0 loss in Detroit the night before and dropped their fifth straight.
Sedin and his twin brother, Henrik, extended their goal-scoring droughts to 17 games.
“Me and Danny have got to step up and score goals. That’s No. 1. That’s the difference right now,” said Henrik Sedin, who returned to the lineup Monday night after missing six games with an upper-body injury. “We’ve got to be the difference-makers and we’re not right now.”
Raphael Diaz scored the only goal for Vancouver, pulling the Canucks to 2-1 on a slap shot with 8:32 left in the second period.
Luongo stopped 29 shots for Vancouver and tried to take responsibility after the Canucks lost for the sixth time in seven games.
“I think this one’s 100 percent on me. I wasn’t too good out there tonight,” he said.
Rangers 5, Avalanche 1
In New York, Rangers captain Ryan Callahan shook off trade talk and scored two first-period goals.
Stars 3, Coyotes 1
In Glendale, Arizona, Antoine Roussel scored the go-ahead goal early in the third period, Kari Lehtonen stopped 26 shots and Dallas beat Phoenix in a key victory for its playoff hopes.
Wild 2, Lightning 1
In St. Paul, Minnesota, Darcy Kuemper made 34 saves and Jared Spurgeon had two assists in his return from a 14-game injury absence.
Jets 2, Hurricanes 1
In Raleigh, North Carolina, Chris Thorburn scored the tiebreaking goal with 1:03 remaining.
Canadiens 2, Flames 0
In Montreal, Rene Bourque scored in the second period against his former team.
Panthers 4, Maple Leafs 1
In Sunrise, Florida, Tim Thomas made 20 saves, Brian Campbell had two assists and the Panthers snapped a three-game losing streak.
Islanders 1, Capitals 0
In Washington, Andrew McDonald scored early in the third period and Evgeni Nabokov made 22 saves for his 57th career shutout as New York broke a five-game losing streak.
Senators 5, Blues 4 (SO)
In St. Louis, Kyle Turris scored the deciding goal in the fifth round of the shootout to go with one in regulation.
IN FIVE EASY PIECES WITH TAKE 5