Pastrnak, Rask lead Bruins over Predators 6-2
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Boston’s latest victory snapped the Bruins’ losing streak and spoiled the debut of the Nashville Predators’ new coach.
David Pastrnak scored for the third consecutive game, Tuukka Rask made 34 saves and the Bruins beat the Predators 6-2 on Tuesday night.
Danton Heinen, Patrice Bergeron, Chris Wagner, David Krejci and Charlie Coyle also scored for the Bruins, who snapped a three-game losing streak.
“Anytime you get balanced scoring, it just takes so much pressure off of the other guys,” Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said. “It turns a lot of those one-goal games into two or three goal wins if they can pitch in every night. That’s the goal.”
Filip Forsberg and Mikael Granlund scored for Nashville, which has lost five of six. Pekka Rinne finished with 30 saves.
New Nashville coach John Hynes lost his debut. Hynes replaced Peter Laviolette, who was fired Monday after five and a half seasons as head coach.
“Now having been on the bench with the players and going through a game and seeing the ups and downs and what it goes through, I really feel I have a strong grasp of some areas that I think we can improve,” Hynes said.
Pastrnak scored the game’s first goal at 1:36 of the opening period.
Driving down the right side, Pastrnak fired a slap shot from just above the faceoff dot past Rinne on the glove side.
Pastrnak has goals in three straight games and extended his point scoring streak to 11.
“We’re a team that needs and relies on everyone to play their game and bring it every night,” Bergeron said. “I thought tonight was a perfect example of how we want to play, how everyone wants to compete, and when you do that, most often than not, you’re going to get the result. I thought we did that tonight.”
Heinen made it 2-0 at 8:21 of the second.
From the high slot, Heinen sent a shot by Predators defenseman Matt Irwin, who slid in an attempt to block the shot, which beat Rinne high to the far side for his seventh of the season.
“Mentally, it kind of reminds you that you can do it,” Heinen said. “I’ll just try to build off of it and keep on trying to work on the details and I think that will come.”
Forsberg cut the Boston lead in half at 10:54 of the second.
With the Predators on a 5-on-3 power play, Forsberg’s shot from the high slot squeezed between Rask’s right arm and body.
“I know we’ll be making some changes to our game and I know that everyone’s going to buy in,” Predators forward Matt Duchene said. “We have a heck of a group in here. I know we believe in ourselves and believe in each other.”
Predators captain Roman Josi assisted on the goal. Josi has points in 11 consecutive games. It’s the longest point streak by a defenseman in the NHL this season
Bergeron’s power-play goal at 17:42 of the second restored Boston’s two-goal lead and Wagner scored his first goal in a month at 2:51 of the third.
Granlund scored a power-play goal at 18:06 of the third, but Krejci and Coyle scored 22 seconds apart to conclude the scoring.
NOTES: Boston is 15-0-5 when leading after two periods this season. ... Rask is 5-1-2 in his career against the Predators. ... Bruins D Torey Krug has assists in three consecutive games. ... Duchene returned to the lineup after missing two games due to an illness.
Bruins: Host Winnipeg Jets on Thursday.
Predators: Visit Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday.
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