BOSTON — Both Mark Stuart and Milan Lucic scored goals in their return to the Bruins’ lineup today at TD Garden.
However, only one of the scores counted.
Stuart, in his first game back since Dec. 7 because of a broken hand, lit the lamp just 7:56 into Boston’s 7-0 rout of Carolina on a slap shot from the left point.
Just 1:19 later, Lucic cashed in from the high slot after a drop pass by linemate David Krejci. However, the referee behind the play had a penalty on Zdeno Chara that wiped out Lucic’s score. The bulky winger was playing his first game since leaving the lineup with an undisclosed (upper-b0dy) injury last Monday in Pittsburgh.
“I have to build off of it,” said Lucic. “It was a little disheartening; it was a good, quick shot for myself. I was thinking here we go, lets get it going again.”
For the game, Stuart logged 16:04 of ice time and was a plus-3.
“I felt great, because I’ve been skating for five weeks,” said Stuart, who also revealed he was wearing extra protection on his right hand. “It’s not like one of those injuries where I couldn’t go on the ice and was trying to catch up, so, it is a little different in the game, game-pace, it’s definitely tough, but yeah, all in all, good.”
Late in the game, Troy Bodie tried to engage Stuart in a tussle. But the veteran defenseman, who has suffered hand injuries two years running, declined the offer and allowed teammate Adam McQuaid to pound the heck out of Bodie.
“In that situation you kind of have to jump in there for your teammate,” said McQuaid. “We all know Stewie’s not going to back down so it was just kind of something that you need to do.”
Lucic, who skated on a line with Krejci and Tyler Seguin, and also was back on the Bruins’ power play, finished with an assist and even plus/minus in 14:24 on the ice.