It was an afternoon to remember, as Bruins fans received an early Christmas present when Coach Bruce Cassidy announced Patrice Bergeron would return to the lineup.  Number 37 had been out since November 16th after sustaining a rib and sternoclavicular injury in a game against Dallas.  Without missing a beat, in typical Bruins fashion, Bergeron reminded fans and the NHL exactly why he is one of the greatest premier two-way forwards as he notched his 300th NHL goal.  He is now 17 games away from reaching his 1,000th game played.  Bergeron is now the sixth player in Bruins history to score 300 goals.  He joins an elite group alongside Cam Neely, Ray Bourque, Rick Middleton, Phil Esposito, and Johnny Bucyk.


In the first period, Bergeron got the Bruins on board 1-0 when he scored at 15:10 from a Charlie McAvoy pass.  The Bruins would score another goal in the second making it 2-0, only to have it overturned when Nashville challenged for goaltender interference.  The Predators would even the score when Ryan Johansen netted a goal off a one-timer pass from Craig Smith.  However, Bergeron would bring Boston up by one when he scored his second goal of the game (and one that would be his 300th career goal).  Nashville would come back when Kyle Turris scored with a wrist shot, making it 2-2.

Boston Bruins Patrice Bergeron)

(Photo Credits: Stuart Cahill/Boston Herald)


With a frustrated Preds team looking to make a comeback, a penalty was given to Ryan Hartman when he tripped David Pastrnak.  Bruins’ Brad Marchand took advantage, and netted a power play goal with an assist by Bergeron, making the score 3-2.  Any hopes for the Predators were quickly squashed as Pastrnak scored on a one-timer pass from Marchand for a 4-2 lead; Bergeron was also credited with an assist for the Pastrnak goal.  Adding the final nail in the coffin, Sean Kuraly potted an empty-net goal in the last few moments in the third, making the final score 5-2.

With the win, the Boston Bruins are now one point away from taking the third spot in the Atlantic Division.  Nashville has now lost four in a row, as well as losing 10 straight road games.  They are also missing some key players in their lineup, such as P.K Subban and Viktor Arvidsson.  Bruins’ Marchand and Pastrnak had two goals and two assists.  Goaltender Jaroslav Halak made 28 saves and is third in the league for goals against average at 2.19; he’s tied for first in the league with save percentage (.930) alongside Tampa Bay’s goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy.  He’s also tied in second in the league for shutout wins.  The Bruins have now won three in a row, and six of their last eight games.  Boston is hoping to extend their winning streak as they travel to face the Carolina Hurricanes tomorrow afternoon.

NEXT GAME: Sunday, December 23rd with puck drop at  5:00 PM