David Krejci scored the winning goal with 1:10 left in regulation on a beautiful feed from rookie Dougie Hamilton, and Anton Khudobin made 29 saves in his first start of the season to help the Bruins improve to 4-0-1 with a 5-3 win at Carolina.
Krejci also added an assist. Zdeno Chara led the way with a goal and two assists, and Nathan Horton and Tyler Seguin each had a goal and an assist for Boston. Carolina was led by Eric Staal (goal, assist) and Alexander Semin (two assists) while Cam Ward had 33 saves in net.
Special teams the difference for Bruins -- The Bruins' penalty kill continued its brilliance Monday night as they killed off six Carolina power plays and scored a shorthanded goal 3:16 into the first period. They had another chance at a shorty on a second-period breakaway by Rich Peverley that was denied by Ward. The Bruins have killed off all 23 power plays they've faced this season. Meanwhile, the power play connected twice to go 2-for-4 and is now 3-for-21 on the season. Chara had a power-play tally at 6:15 of the first period and Seguin added another with an empty-netter with eight seconds left in regulation.
Hamilton sets up the win -- After finding out that he won't be sent back to juniors earlier in the day, Hamilton again showed his vision and poise in setting up the winning goal by Krejci. Hamilton held the puck just long enough to see Krejci open in the slot and dished it to the Czech center, who buried it home to make it 4-3. The 19-year-old continues to be calm under pressure and now has a three-game point streak going with four helpers in that span.
Vintage Chara -- There's been plenty of buzz about Hamilton (and deservedly so), but let's not forget that the Bruins have a perennial Norris Trophy contender and one of the most feared rearguards in the NHL in Chara. On Monday night, Chara reminded us of that with his three-point effort. Chara was a beast throughout the game, using his size to play a physical game and also create offense. Chara has two goals and three assists through five games.
Khudobin solid in first start of season -- Khudobin looked solid in his first start. Yes, he allowed two goals in 50 seconds at the end of the second period, allowing the Hurricanes to tie the game 3-3, but he wasn't really to blame there. He did a solid job of maintaining composure every time Carolina gained the momentum and looks ready to fill in whenever Tuukka Rask needs a break.
Horton looking better and better -- Horton continued to look more and more like the power forward he was prior to his two concussions. After not playing a game since last Jan. 22, Horton has two goals and and two assists in five games. He's playing with an edge, driving to the net and lighting the lamp, which is good news for the Bruins and their fans but bad news for other teams.
Fatigue plagues Bruins late in second period -- While the penalty kill did its job, the fatigue of killing off three Carolina power plays in the first 10 minutes of the second period seemed to catch up to the Bruins in the latter half of the middle frame. That was no more evident than late in the period when the Hurricanes erased a two-goal deficit with two goals in 50 seconds to send the game into the second intermission tied at three. The Bruins appeared to regain their legs in the third period and stemmed the Carolina momentum as the period began.
McQuaid out; Johnson in -- With Adam McQuaid out for personal reasons, Aaron Johnson was back in the lineup Monday night. Johnson was paired with Andrew Ference in the third defense pairing. Here's what the rest of the lineup looked like:
Milan Lucic-David Krejci-Nathan Horton
Zdeno Chara-Johnny Boychuk
Dennis Seidenberg-Dougie Hamilton
Aaron Johnson-Andrew Ference