NHL Hockey: Carolina Hurricanes at Boston Bruins - Hurricanes Favored
The defenseman looks to build off a strong season debut Thursday when the Hurricanes visit the Boston Bruins.
Kaberle missed the start of the season following September shoulder surgery and did not play until Tuesday's 2-1 win at Montreal. He made a big impact in his season debut, scoring the deciding goal midway through the third period.
"It's kind of nice," he said. "I'm happy we won tonight. My shoulder felt pretty good, so I'm pretty satisfied with this night."
Kaberle recorded career highs of 38 assists and 44 points last season, and scored the eventual game-winning goal in Carolina's 3-1 victory over Edmonton in the seventh game of the Stanley Cup finals on June 19. The Czech defenseman had six goals in the 2005-06 regular season, one shy of the career high he set with Atlanta in 2002-03.
"He just gets it done. That's two game-winners in a row for Frank - Game 7 and tonight - so we'll take him every game," said Eric Staal, who assisted on Justin Williams' power-play goal. "He's got so much poise and talent back there. He takes a shot when it's there, and it was there tonight."
Tuesday's victory ended a four-game losing streak and was just the second in eight games for the Hurricanes (27-22-7), who are clinging to the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Carolina scored twice on three power-play chances after going just 3-for-39 with the man advantage in their previous seven games.
"We needed this win really bad and we were just fortunate to come out on top," said goalie Cam Ward, who stopped 25 shots.
Left wing Cory Stillman left in the second period with a lower-body injury. He didn't return and his status is uncertain for this contest.
The Bruins (24-24-4) trail the Hurricanes by nine points in the Eastern Conference race, with Toronto, the New York Islanders and New York Rangers between them. However, Boston has won two straight since a five-game losing streak, including Tuesday's 3-2 shootout win at Washington.
"It's a big win for us, (because) we needed the two points against a team like that," coach Dave Lewis told the team's official Web site. "We were scrapping for our points, and that's what happened."
Patrice Bergeron scored the game-tying goal in regulation and Brandon Bochenski, acquired Saturday from Chicago, added a score in his Bruins debut.
"(Brandon) looked very comfortable on the ice after the first period," Lewis told the Web site. "He got a big goal for us and was dangerous."
Glen Murray, who leads Boston with 26 goals, was scratched because of a groin injury.
Boston was coming off Saturday's 4-3 overtime win over Carolina, its first victory in three games against the Hurricanes this season. Murray and Carolina's Erik Cole each had two goals before Zdeno Chara scored the game-winner in the extra session.
by: Gary Roberts - theSpread.com - Email Us
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