That the Bruins beat Tampa Bay, 2-0, Thursday night was important for the club’s attempt to win the Northeast Division and finish second in the Eastern Conference.
The Bruins continue to hold their own fate in their hands with two games remaining in the season. If the Bruins get three of four points, they win the division regardless of what Montreal does in its last game against Toronto Saturday.
But more important than the two points was that the Bruins got back to playing their style of game against the Lightning, because regardless of their seeding the Bruins aren’t going far if they don’t play better than they did in the last five weeks.
Including their win against Tampa Bay, Boston is just 11-10-2 since collapsing in the third period against Pittsburgh. The Bruins are also just 6-7-2 against East playoff teams since March 1.
•Daniel Paille scored one of the Bruins’ two goals. It was a fitting performance for a guy who got jobbed in the Seventh Player Award voting. Dougie Hamilton won the popularity contest, while Paille’s 10-goal season was snubbed.
•The Bruins are scheduled to have their last regular-season practice Friday and then they’ll head to Washington to play the Southeast Division-champion Washington Capitals Saturday night.