The return to Boston turned out to be a memorable one for Tyler Seguin and Rich Peverley. Seguin and Peverley scored Dallas’ two shootout goals as the Stars defeated the Boston Bruins, 3-2, Tuesday night at TD Garden.
“Anytime you score a goal it feels good, whether it is in a game or in a shootout, that win even feels better for me,” said Seguin.
“It was nice to have that opportunity to go against Tuukka (Rask, Boston goaltender), it was fun,” said Peverley. “But to be able to come out with two points is a real big confidence boost for our team.”
Seguin scored in the second round of the shootout and Peverley’s goal in the fourth round won the game for the Stars, who improved to 4-1-2 over their last seven games and are now 7-6-2- on the season.
“I knew where this was on the calendar, my first time in Boston, obviously the win for me personally but for this team,” said Seguin, who along with Peverley, were playing against the Bruins for the first time since being traded to Dallas in July. “It was a great identity win for us. They were one of the best third period teams in the league, have been for a while. We found a way.”
The Stars weathered an early storm when the Bruins, aided by a couple of power plays, had a 15-1 advantage in shots. The Stars took it to the Bruins after that, outshooting them 35-21 the rest of the way. Still, the Stars found themselves down a goal late in the game, but got a penalty shot goal from Vernon Fiddler with 2:34 remaining to get the game to overtime.
“After the first ten minutes of the game we started to find our game a little bit,” said Fiddler. “We can’t sit back and watch. We have to be an on our toes kind of team. I think once we started doing that we played a lot better, got a lot more chances and we even defended more. We’ve got to build on the last two periods and go from there.”
“I thought the leadership of our team was fantastic after the first period,” said Stars coach Lindy Ruff. “I give it all to (Jamie) Benn and Fidds. What Fidds did in the first, and even the penalty killing with Horc (Shawn Horcoff) and all those guys. Those guys deserve a lot of credit. You can say all you want as a coach, but I think those were the guys out there that went and changed the game. Fidds made the biggest difference late with the penalty shot.”
Despite the slow start, the Stars scored first, cashing in on their first shot of the game when Jamie Benn picked off the puck at the Boston blue line, skated to the right circle and beat Tuukka Rask with a wrist shot 3:38 into the game.
The Bruins drew even 38 seconds later. Boston defenseman Torey Krug forced a turnover in the Dallas zone, went to the net, took a pass from Reilly Smith and scored from close range to make it a 1-1 game at 4:16 of the first period.
The Stars, who killed off two Boston power plays in the first, killed off back-to-back Bruins power plays early in the second and then dominated play for the rest of the period, outshooting Boston 13-4, but there was no scoring and the game was tied 1-1 going into the third period.
The Stars had a four minute power play early in the third, but couldn’t cash in. Rask had stops on a Jamie Benn wrap-around and a Seguin blast from the left circle.
Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen, who stopped 34 of 36 shots on the night, came up big with just over 11 minutes remaining in the third, stopping a close range bid by Brad Marchand.
The Bruins took a 2-1 lead when defenseman Dougie Hamilton’s shot from the point deflected off Milan Lucic and past Lehtonen with 8:21 remaining in the third.
The Stars tied the game with 2:34 remaining when Fiddler was hooked by Boston defenseman Dennis Seidenberg on a breakaway, was awarded a penalty shot and roofed a backhand shot over Rask.
“It was a break we needed,” said Ruff. “Got the call for the shot and he was able to finish.”
The Stars outshot the Bruins 4-3 in the scoreless overtime, and the game was settled in the shootout. Boston’s Patrice Bergeron shot first and scored to give Boston the early lead. Seguin, shooting second for the Stars, tied it by beating Rask with a snap shot to the blocker side. After the regulation portion of the shootout was over, Boston center David Krejci shot first in the fourth round and was stopped by Lehtonen. Ruff then opted to go with Peverley as Dallas’ shooter in the bottom half of the fourth.
“Just really played a hunch that maybe he knew Rask better than some of our guys,” Ruff said. “I even asked Tyler how he felt, and he said he felt good shooting on him. I thought that was a great answer. Sometimes it’s a hunch. When we got through the first three, I just thought Pevs might be the next best guy.”
And Peverley beat Rask with a wrist shot to give the Stars the victory and hand the Bruins their fourth loss in the last five games (1-3-1).
“I was just trying to go in with some speed, and maybe fool him going five-hole. Luckily, it snuck through,” said Peverley. “To come into this building and be able to get two points, that’s a big confidence booster for our team, and we’ve got to keep going and keep getting better.”
The Stars improved to 2-0-0 on their current road trip, which concludes Thursday in Detroit.
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