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With word that the team has lost center Marc Savard and forward Byron Bitz for an extended period time, the Bruins face an up-hill battle over the next couple months. With the 2010 Winter Olympics in February, the league’s schedule becomes tighter heading toward the big event, which means 3-4 games per week. That’s not what the doctor ordered for the walking wounded known as your 2009-10 Boston Bruins.
The B’s limped to a 3-1 loss to the Rangers on Saturday afternoon, their third straight defeat to New York this season (a 3-2 loss on Jan. 4, and a 1-0 loss on Nov. 1). Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist had a huge game against the Bruins yet again, finishing with 29 saves on 30 shots, including a penalty shot in the first period.
Marco Sturm attempted the first period shot, trying to push his wrister through Lundqvist’s legs. The tactic didn’t work, and the roaring TD Garden crowd was stunned.
“There’s no doubt that would have gotten us back in the game, but it didn’t happen,” Bruins coach Claude Julien said.
Not only was it the B’s best chance to score, it was nearly their only legitimate chance most of the game. In the first two periods, they managed 14 total shots, including just three in the second period. They didn’t break through until Dennis Wideman saved face for the Bruins, scoring with just under four minutes to go in the game.
The Rangers spread out their damage across all periods, scoring one goal each in the first (Michael Del Zotto), the second (Brandon Dubinsky) and the third period (Erik Christensen). Dubinsky finished with one goal and two assists on the day, as the Rangers sent 34 shots in all to Tim Thomas, who managed to rack up 31 saves.
The Bruins, losers of three of four since the Winter Classic, will next skate on Wednesday in Anaheim against the Ducks.