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Despite an entertaining 6-3 win over the Dallas Stars on Thursday, the Boston Bruins failed to keep their momentum going against the San Jose Sharks on Saturday afternoon at the TD Garden.
The Bruins outshot the Sharks, 26-18, but lost, 2-0.
“If you take that empty-net goal, they only had that one goal on the power play. There wasn’t that many opportunities both ways. I think it was a battle tonight of two teams that I think are heavy teams. If there was an area where they were better than us, it was the battle. They won more battles than we did and I think that’s where it was decided,” Bruins head coach Claude Julien said after Saturday’s game.
Sharks’ Logan Couture scored a power-play goal 7 minutes, 22 seconds into the game, while Devin Setoguchi notched an empty-net goal with 2.1 seconds left.
The Bruins struggled – once again – on their power play, going 0-for-4 and only managed one shot on goal during the man advantage. Boston is 0-for-12 on the power play since Jan. 22 in the Bruins’ 6-2 win over Colorado.
“Our power play tonight had a tough time. Tonight was probably one of the tougher times we’ve had trying to get the puck in and when we did get it in, as I mentioned, we weren’t winning the loose pucks and they kept shooting it back down the ice. To me it made – and I’m repeating myself – the biggest difference in tonight’s game,” Julien said.
Julien blames part of the Bruins loss to the lack of production from some of his skaters. The Bruins have seen that their players have the ability to produce needed goals, but they need to start producing more and consistently.
“We’ve been talking about [Patrice] Bergeron’s line (with Brad Marchand and Mark Recchi) which has been really good for us, but we need some other lines to take that same approach and want to be as good as they are every night,” said Julien. “I think that it’s the responsibility of each individual to be the best he can and there are some players that can still be better.”
The Bruins scored nine goals in their first two games back from the All-Star break using Bergeron’s line and Milan Lucic, David Krejci and Nathan Horton’s line – a 3-2 win over Carolina on Feb. 1 and a 6-3 win over Dallas on Feb. 3.
“We’ve got a lot of players that we know can produce – but some of those guys we’ve talked about need to start producing a little bit more,” said Julien.
The Bruins host the Montreal Canadiens on Feb. 9 and then a home-and-home with the Detroit Red Wings on Feb. 11 and 13.