For the second straight game, the Bruins were victimized by a hat trick.

Only this time, it cost them a game. Washington forward Mathieu Perreault scored a hat trick, including the game-winning goal at 7:18 of the third period, as the Capitals beat the Bruins, 5-3, in D.C. tonight.

The Capitals were not only missing Nicklas Backstrom and Mike Green due to injury, but also missing Alexander Ovechkin due to a suspension. Boston was without the suspended Andrew Ference and injured Nathan Horton (concussion).

Philadelphia’s Scott Hartnell scored three goals against Boston Sunday, but the Bruins won, 6-5.

The Bruins will now take a week off before they hit the ice again, as the All-Star break starts now. The Bruins are back in action next Tuesday at home against Ottawa.

In their last seven games, six of which were on the road, before the break, Boston went 3-3-1. Most disturbing, however — even more so than Tim Thomas’ political leanings — is the collapse of the defense both in preventing goals and breaking the puck out of the defensive zone. Boston allowed 10 goals in the last two games before the break.

Everyone had a hand in the giveaway-fest tonight. You can bet general manager Peter Chiarelli will be looking hard for a puck-moving defenseman over the break and all the way until the Feb. 28 trade deadline. It’ll be kind of weird for Chiarelli to not have Tomas Kaberle at the top of his shopping list, I’m sure.