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The Boston Bruins have been streaky so far this season. A steady Tuukka Rask would be a nice stabilizer.
Rask made 36 saves, Ryan Spooner and Patrice Bergeron scored and the Bruins beat the New York Islanders 2-1 on Sunday night to snap a three-game losing streak.
"I felt really good today," Rask said. "It was a great effort by the team. We stuck with our plan."
Spooner opened the scoring with a power-play goal on a two-man advantage 13 minutes in. He finished a pretty passing play with a shot past goaltender Jaroslav Halak from the doorstep for his third of the season. David Krejci and Bergeron assisted.
Bergeron scored with 5:47 left in the second on a point shot that was deflected in. Officials originally said the puck went in off Brad Marchand and awarded him the goal, but it was later changed to Bergeron's score after replays showed the pick tipped off defenseman Nick Leddy.
The Bruins had won four straight prior to the three-game skid.
"It was important for us to show up tonight and bring out a solid effort," Bergeron said. "We had to bring more composure to our game. I thought we did a good job of that."
Former Bruin Johnny Boychuk scored for the Islanders on a two-man advantage with 6:42 left in the third. The Islanders squandered two power plays earlier in the final period, drawing boos from the crowd
"We couldn't beat a good goalie," Islanders defenseman Travis Hamonic said. "We're not that far removed from playing some really good hockey. We're still a confident group."
Rask made a number of impressive saves, including a glove stop on Cal Clutterbuck late in the second. He denied Clutterbuck again late in the third on a point-blank shot from in front and made a right pad save on Brock Nelson in the waning minutes.
"He played really well for us, kept us in the game," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "He made saves for us tonight when we really needed them."
The Bruins have the league's top power play and have scored with the man advantage in seven straight games and 11 of their last 14 contests.
The Islanders lost their second straight and their fifth in their last six games. They have scored just nine goals in those six contests. They were 1 for 7 on the power play against the Bruins.
"We have to battle through it," Islanders coach Jack Capuano said. "We had chances on the power play and didn't capitalize. I feel for the guys. We've done some good things - we're in a rut right now. We just have to keep working hard."
The Bruins won a day after losing at Montreal and improved to 6-2-0 on the road.
The Bruins won their fourth straight road game against the Islanders and have a 14-5-1 record in their last 20 games overall against New York.
"We kept it simple, that's when we're at our best," Marchand said.
NOTES: The teams meet again in Boston on March 12. ... Boston scratched injured forwards Chris Kelly and David Pastrnak and defenseman Dennis Seidenberg. ... The Islanders made Josh Bailey a healthy scratch. ... Forward Taylor Beck made his debut for the home team. ... The Islanders continued to be without injured defenseman Thomas Hickey. ... The Islanders embark this week of their first major road trip of the season, visiting San Jose, Los Angeles and Anaheim.
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