Jake DeBrusk made sure that the Boston Bruins stayed hot heading into the All-Star break.
DeBrusk scored the go-ahead goal with 11:19 remaining to help Boston extend its points streak to 18 games and cap the first half of the season with a 3-2 victory against the Senators in Ottawa on Thursday night.
Boston, which won its fifth consecutive game, has not lost in regulation since Dec. 14, going 14-0-4 in that span. The Bruins matched their longest point streak since 1968-69, when Bobby Orr was in his third NHL season.
Danton Heinen and Tim Schaller also scored for the Bruins. Tuukka Rask made 21 saves to improve to 16-0-2 in his past 18 starts.
Thomas Chabot and Ryan Dzingel each had a goal for Ottawa, which limped into the break with its fifth straight loss and dropped to 3-5-1 in January. Mike Condon stopped 41 of 44 shots in net for the Senators.
Boston became the first NHL team to win seven straight games when allowing the first goal since the Columbus Blue Jackets in the 2005-06 season.
Chabot’s fourth goal of the season 12:00 into the game put Ottawa on top 1-0, a lead that held through the end of the first period. Heinen tied it with his 11th goal at 11:35 of the second.
Two goals in 20 seconds made for an eventful start to the third as Schaller’s sixth of the season 1:58 into the period was followed by Dzingel’s 14th at 2:18. Schaller scored short-handed, while Dzingel converted on a power play.
DeBrusk’s game-winning goal was his 11th of the campaign. The shot came from the right circle at an angle and deflected off Condon and into the net.
“I got some puck luck there, so it was nice,” DeBrusk told NESN after the game. “I hit a crossbar earlier in the game and got rewarded there, so it was nice and big for the boys to close out at the end, and a big win for us.”
With Condon pulled for an extra skater in the final minute, Rask withstood a barrage of desperation chances to seal the win.
The Bruins were without All-Star Brad Marchand, who was serving the first game of his five-game suspension for elbowing New Jersey’s Marcus Johansson on Tuesday. Marchand is still eligible to play in the All-Star Game despite the suspension.
The Bruins and Senators complete their four-game season series April 7 in Boston. The Bruins won the first two meetings, 5-1 at home on Dec. 27 and 5-0 on the road Dec. 30.
--Field Level Media