Bruins 5, Tampa Bay 2: Pouliot’s heroics, Chara’s gift exchange

Chara/By S. Bradley

BOSTON – Zdeno Chara skated in his 1,000th NHL game Saturday night in Los Angeles.

Before Tuesday night’s game with the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Bruins and the NHL lavished the Boston captain with gifts to commemorate that accomplishment. After the ceremony, Chara went out and thanked the Bruins the best way he knows how.

Chara recorded three assists, including one helper on Benoit Pouliot’s game-winning goal, in a the Bruins’ 5-2 win over the Lightning at the TD Garden. Chara now has 3-3-6 totals in his last five games.

It was his third three-assist game and his 11th career three-point game. He was also plus-3 with six shots on goal.

▪Chara isn’t the only hot Bruins skater. Pouliot now has 2-2-4 totals in three straight games. And his linemate Brian Rolston is the hottest of them all with 3-9-12 totals during a seven-game point streak. Unfortunately, center Chris Kelly saw his point streak end at five games. But the veteran pivot was key on the forecheck leading up Pouliot’s goal – the fifth game-winner of the season by the speedster. The Kelly Line has produced 28 points in the seven games it’s been together.

▪It was a big night for slump-busting. Shawn Thornton scored his first goal in 36 games, while Dennis Seidenberg scored his first in 28 games.

Tyler Seguin recorded an assist. He also picked up two minor penalties, which has him on a streak of four straight games with at least one minor penalty.

▪The Bruins’ three-game winning streak is their first since they won seven in a row 12/10-12/29/11.

▪Tampa Bay superstar scored both of his team’s goals to run his league-leading total to 54 on the season.

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