GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Even with two road points secure, Boston Bruins coach Claude Julien was far from happy Saturday night.
“This wasn’t a game I was accustomed to the last week or so,” Julien said after Boston’s 2-1 win over the Arizona Coyotes. “We can’t be satisfied with just two points. We have to be able to play better. We looked like a team that thought it would be an easy night.”
David Pastrnak got his team-leading 10th goal, Ryan Spooner also scored and Tuukka Rask stopped 31 shots for the Bruins, who have won three of their last four overall and nine straight against Arizona.
Boston has not lost to the Coyotes since Oct. 9, 2010, during a season-opening series in Prague.
Radim Vrbata scored a power-play goal and Louis Domingue made 27 saves for the Coyotes, who have lost two straight and three of their past four.
“It’s a game of inches and right now we’re just a little bit behind,” Domingue said. “We’ve got to start with ourselves, look in the mirror and know we can do better. We’re last in the league — we’re not there now, but we’ve been there a long time. We’ve just got to find common ground and work as a team.
Boston dominated play in the first period, generating multiple scoring chances off Coyotes turnovers but failing to score.
The Bruins finally broke through to lead 1-0 at 7:54 of the second. David Backes passed from behind the net to Zdeno Chara just above the circles, and Spooner redirected his shot past Domingue for his third goal.
“He’s got a bomb,” Spooner said. “I was kind of scared standing there but I’m glad it went into the back of the net.”
Pastrnak made it 2-0 just under two minutes later, taking a pass from Brad Marchand off the right boards and beating Domingue from the top of the right circle.
Pastrnak is tied for second in the league in goals, trailing only Winnipeg rookie Patrik Laine.
Marchand had a chance to extend the lead further with 5:27 left in the period but was stopped on a partial breakaway by a Domingue pad save.
Vrbata cut the Bruins’ lead to 2-1 with 7:55 left, firing a shot from the left that bounced off the left post, into Rask’s body and back into the net.
Arizona mustered only a handful of scoring chances during the first two periods. The Coyotes’ best chance came early in the second period when Max Domi took control of a rebound in the low slot and pushed the puck flush against the left post before it was cleared.
“Our execution was just poor,” Coyotes coach Dave Tippett said. “We turned over a lot of pucks and brought some problems on ourselves. We pushed in the third but it wasn’t enough.”
NOTES: Vrbata has five points in his last four games. He tied David Ellett for 16th place on the franchise’s career scoring list with his 299th career point. … Chara’s assist was the 400th of his career. … Coyotes D Michael Stone returned to the lineup after missing six games with an upper-body injury. Stone has missed nine of Arizona’s first 13 games because of injury. … After completing a full practice on Friday, Coyotes G Mike Smith has been upgraded to day-to-day. … Julien gave his players the morning off Saturday and will do the same Sunday when the Bruins travel to Colorado to complete a back-to-back set against the Avalanche.
Bruins: Play Sunday night at Colorado.
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