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Bruins Notebook: Boston Starts the Year off Hot

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Tuukka Rask’s success continues

Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask ended the year on a high note, claiming a spot in the 2017-18 All-Star game and receiving the title of the National Hockey League’s first star for the month of December.

Rask (.955) returned to the net in the beginning of December after a two-week hiatus. His goal was to come back strong and to reclaim his spot as head netminder from the Bruins’ backup goalie, Anton Khudobin (.923). His performance of  13-8-3 and a 2.13 goals against average brought him back to the forefront of elite goaltending.

Boston’s fourth line

Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy has some tricks up his sleeve heading into the new year. One of these is his strong fourth-line placement.

In the Bruins’ 5-1 Tuesday, the fourth line provided a crucial pair of goals to aid the team’s success. Cassidy combined Tim Schaller, Sean Kuraly, and Noel Acciari who finished the game together with a +5 point rating and eight shots on goal.

“You need four lines in this league nowadays to contribute and lately we’ve had that,” Rask told NHL.com. “They give us the energy, a lot of times they play in the o-zone and create havoc there.”

Bjork sent to Providence

General manager Don Sweeney announced Anders Bjork was assigned to Providence, Wednesday.

Bjork played 28 games for the Bruins so far this season, leaving the Bruins with a +2 rating set by four goals and eight assists. Since returning from an injury in mid-November, the rookie has yet to perform to the standards of his first-line play we saw at the beginning of the season.

Weekly recap

Boston headed into the New Year with a 4-3 win over the Washington Capitals, Thursday. Rask showed his All-Star qualities Saturday, with a 5-0 shutout win over the Senators. The Bruins joined in on the New York City new years celebrations, winning 5-1 over the Islanders in Brooklyn on Tuesday.

Next 7 Days at a Glance

Thursday, Jan 4 vs Florida Panthers POSTPONED

Saturday, Jan 6 at 7pm vs Carolina Hurricanes

Sunday, Jan 7 at 7:30pm vs Pittsburgh Penguins

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