Bergeron scores twice as Bruins beat Flames 4-3
CALGARY, Alberta (AP) — Patrice Bergeron is healthy again, and showing no signs of slowing down.
Bergeron scored two more goals, and the Boston Bruins beat the Calgary Flames 4-3 on Friday night for their fifth consecutive win.
Bergeron has scored 21 times in 32 games since returning from a lower-body injury on Dec. 9. He is tied with Alex Ovechkin for the NHL’s second-most goals over that span, behind only Auston Matthews of Toronto with 25.
Brad Marchand and Charlie Coyle also scored for Boston (39-11-12), which opened a five-point lead on Tampa Bay atop the NHL’s overall standings. David Pastrnak had two assists.
Bergeron said playing with Marchand and Pastrnak makes his job “real easy.”
“I’m trying to take care of the details of the game and go on the attack and from there, simplifying our game,” he said. “We’re used to each other. We know where to be. I’m trying to get open for them to find me.”
The 34-year-old Bergeron is up to 29 goals. His career high is 32, accomplished twice during his 16-year career.
“It goes well beyond him scoring as much as he has been. He does every little thing right,” Coyle said. “He’s always on the right side of the puck. He has a great stick. Really good defensively. He just puts in the work.”
The Bruins, who have won 11 of 12 overall, also made a trade Friday, acquiring forward Ondrej Kase from Anaheim. Kase has missed the past five games with flu-like symptoms and won’t join his new team until the Bruins return home after completing a four-game trip at Vancouver on Saturday.
Boston sent veteran forward David Backes, defensive prospect Axel Andersson and a first-round pick to the Ducks in the deal.
Mikael Backlund had two goals and Johnny Gaudreau also scored for Calgary (31-25-6), which is fighting for a wild card in the Western Conference. The Flames head out on a five-game trip that begins Sunday in Detroit, before meeting the Bruins again on Tuesday.
“We’ve got to take the right things out of this game and move on, take the positives out of it,” interim Flames coach Geoff Ward said. “To hold a team like that to the number of shots that we did and the number of scoring chances we did, I thought it was a good defensive effort from our guys.”
Marchand gave Boston its first lead 52 seconds into the second period — making it 4-3 after trailing 3-1 — deflecting Brandon Carlo’s point shot past Cam Talbot.
Bergeron got the comeback started at 6:12 of the first when he outmuscled Sean Monahan at the side of the crease to bang in a puck as it bounced out front off the end boards.
Boston tied it six minutes later. After Alexander Yelesin’s point shot from the Bruins blue line was blocked, the puck was corralled by Karson Kuhlman, who sprung Coyle on a breakaway. He cleanly beat Talbot with a move to his forehand.
“They weren’t giving us anything. The couple chances we had, most of them we scored on,” Flames forward Matthew Tkachuk said. “They’ve got four lines that can wear you down. Their D move the puck very well. They defend very, very well. You saw that in the third.”
Boston’s Jaroslav Halak, beaten three times on the first four shots, was perfect the rest of the way, making 18 saves to improve to 16-6-6.
Talbot’s four goals allowed came on 23 shots. He fell to 9-10-1.
Calgary got off to a fast start when Backlund scored 20 seconds into the game. Noah Hanifin’s shot missed the net and Rasmus Andersson put the carom off the goal post before Backlund put it past Halak.
Backlund scored again at 2:34, one-timing a Tobias Rieder saucer pass over Halak’s shoulder for his 12th goal of the season and sixth in the last seven games.
Boston got on the scoreboard 24 seconds later. Pastrnak’s shot went wide off the skate of Flames defenseman Michael Stone before it was flicked in by Bergeron for his 29th of the season.
Gaudreau restored Calgary’s two-goal lead less than a minute later. He drove to the net and had the puck deflect in off the stick of Bruins center David Krejci.
NOTES: Flames F Mark Jankowski played in his 200th career game. ... Flames captain Mark Giordano (hamstring) was on the ice for the optional morning skate as he inches closer to a return. He has missed eight games. ... The Bruins improved to 9-1-1 against the Pacific Division.
Flames: At Detroit on Sunday night.
Bruins: At Vancouver on Saturday night.
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