Saros’s 35 saves carries Predators past Bruins, 2-1
BOSTON (AP) — Juuse Saros stopped 35 shots, Cody Glass scored late in the second period and the Nashville Predators beat NHL-best Boston 2-1 on Tuesday night, halting the Bruins’ seven-game winning streak.
Chasing the Western Conference’s eighth and final playoff spot, the Predators won for just the third time in eight games. Cole Smith added an empty-netter late in the third.
“There’s a lot of belief in this room,” Glass said of the team’s playoff chances. “Just beating that first-place team gives you that much more belief.”
Boston, which matched its franchise record of 1970-71 with its 57th victory on Sunday, is five away from tying the league record of victories in a regular season with eight games left.
Boston’s David Pastrnak scored his 52nd with less than a second left in the game.
The Detroit Red Wings set the mark of 62 wins in 1995-96 and Tampa Bay matched it in 2018-19. The Bruins could have earned the President’s Trophy with a victory and Carolina losing, which the Hurricanes did against Tampa Bay.
“If we play the way that we have all year, then things will take care of itself,” Boston winger Brad Marchand said.
Linus Ullmark made 21 saves for Boston, which suffered only its fourth regulation loss at home (30-4-3).
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“Tonight was one of those nights where we kind of did it to ourselves,” Bruins captain Patrice Bergeron said.
There were very few scoring chances in the opening two periods before Glass collected the rebound of a blocked shot in the slot, spun and fired a wrister past Ullmark with 1:49 left in the period.
Saros made a body save on Hampus Lindholm’s backhand bid from just outside the crease with just under 13 minutes left in regulation and another on David Krejci with about six minutes left. The Bruins outshot the Predators 16-4 in the final period.
Both the Predators and Bruins wore helmet stickers to show support for The Covenant School in Nashville, Tennessee, after a shooting there Monday claimed the lives of three 9-year-old students and three adult staffers.
The Bruins also held a moment of silence before the national anthem with the PA announcer saying: “The Bruins stand alongside the Nashville Predators in solidarity against gun violence and its support of the Nashville community.”
“We felt like we needed to do our job the best we could and sacrifice and leave it all out there and maybe try to bring an inspiration to the city of Nashville,″ said Predators defenseman Ryan McDonagh, who didn’t fly with the team Monday and stayed with his family after one of his three daughters was in lockdown at a nearby school.
REST VS. RUST
Asked after the morning skate how the Bruins planned to rest players before the playoffs, coach Jim Montgomery said: “We do map it out. We talk to sports science. Obviously, (GM Don Sweeney) and I talk about it first. … We’re playing so many games right now players are not going to get rusty even if they only play two games a week.”
NOTES: Nick Foligno returned to practice Tuesday morning. “It’s great to have him out there,” Montgomery said. “He brings so much energy, positive energy.” … Boston forward Jakub Lauko was out with an upper-body injury that, Montgomery said, “shouldn’t keep him out long.” … Nashville defenseman Roman Josi missed his six straight with an upper-body injury and center Matt Duchene was also out due to an upper-body injury. … Boston won the other meeting this season, 5-0 in Nashville on Feb. 16.
Predators: At Pittsburgh on Thursday.
Bruins: Host Columbus on Thursday.
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