Boston 4, Anaheim 3 (OT)
BOSTON (Associated Press) - Marco Sturm and Patrice Bergeron look like they have been playing together for years.
Amazingly, it's only been 19 games.
Bergeron scored the game-winning goal and assisted on Sturm's two goals to lead the Boston Bruins past the Anaheim Mighty Ducks 4-3 in overtime Monday.
Bergeron completed a 2-on-1 by taking a pass from a streaking Marco Sturm and firing a slap shop past Anaheim goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov 1:55 into overtime to give the Bruins their first win in four games. It was Bergeron's 13th goal of the season.
``I think you always have to find a guy on the team who maybe you click with,'' said Sturm, who was acquired from the San Jose Sharks with Brad Stuart and Wyane Primeau for Joe Thornton on Nov. 30. ``Since I've been here, it's working really well. It's always a lot of fun playing with him.''
The Bruins, who earned a point in their 2-1 shootout loss to Dallas on Jan. 14, won their first game since Jan. 7 to finish their seven-game home stand 3-3-1.
Thomas, making his second start since getting called up from Providence on Jan. 10, saved 25 shots to record his first NHL win since beating Buffalo 8-5 April 5, 2003. He suffered the loss to Dallas, despite stopping 36 of 38 shots.
``We've got points out of the last two games,'' Bruins coach Mike Sullivan. ``I think (Thomas) has given us the opportunity to do that both games and that's all you can ask out of your goaltender.''
The Bruins took a 3-1 lead when Bergeron assisted on Sturm's second goal of the game - 15th of the season - 3:30 into the third period, but the Mighty Ducks scored two goals in less than a minute to tie the game at 3.
``I changed all the lines because we were so flat,'' Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle said. ``We had to find some sort of change.''
Chris Kunitz's eighth goal of the season made it 3-2 9:19 into the period.
With Anaheim on a 5-on-3 advantage, Ryan Getzlaf took a pass from Scott Niedermayer and fired a slap shot past Thomas 10:17 into the third period to tie the game. Andy McDonald also assisted on the goal, Getzlaf's sixth of the season.
Boston committed five penalties in the third period and managed only six shots. Anaheim had 5-on-3 advantages in the third period twice and bombarded the Bruins with 11 shots on goal.
The Bruins killed four of five power plays in the third period to force overtime.
But Sturm and Bergeron teamed up for their third goal of the game to send the Mighty Ducks (19-16-9) to their third loss in four games.
``We held on and were able to get that overtime goal,'' Thomas said. ``It should really help us carry over into the next game. At least that's the hope.''
After being outscored 14-3 in their previous three games, the Bruins (17-21-7) took an early 2-0 lead by outshooting the Mighty Ducks 12-5 in the first period.
The Bruins went up 1-0 midway through the first period when Sturm completed a two-on-one break by taking a nifty Bergeron pass and firing a wrist shot inside the right post. P.J. Axelsson also assisted on the goal, Sturm's 14th of the season.
Sergie Samsonov's 16th goal of the season gave the Bruins a 2-0 lead five minutes later. Byzgalov made a nice save on a Milan Jurcina slap shot, but Samsonov poked in the rebound past an off-balance Bryzgalov.
Notes: Boston was without defenseman Brian Leetch (injured groin) and RW Glen Murray (bruised foot). ... Hal Gill returned to the Bruins lineup after missing two games with a pinched nerve in his neck. ... It was Anaheim's first game in Boston since defeating the Bruins 4-1 Oct. 31, 2002. ... Mighty Ducks leading scorer Teemu Selanne missed his second consecutive game with a groin strain.
Click here for the official score sheet from Monday's action.