After getting lit up on their home ice just over a week ago by Thomas Vanek and the Buffalo Sabres, the Bruins, powered by a strong performance from back-up goaltender Anton Khudobin, secured a 3-1 win last night in what has become a heated rivalry.
Shawn Thornton was back on the ice along with Sabres' enforcer John Scott, who knocked Thornton out for several games with a concussion after the two fought in the previous meeting between the two teams. In that game, by far Tuukka Rask's toughest of the year, the Sabres outgunned the Bruins with their offensive attack led by Thomas Vanek.
That was not that case in last night's meeting, as the Sabres offense was stagnated by Khudobin and the Bruins defense. Khudobin stopped 25 of 26 shots, outplaying world-class goalie Ryan Miller. Petrice Bergeron scored a rare Bruins power play goal half-way through the third period, and the B's were able to hold the lead.
With Tim Thomas having been shipped off to the Islanders, it's just Tuukka and Anton in town now. I wrote at the beginning of the season that I thought Tuukka's durability and Khudobin's ability to fill in for him and play well would be an integral part of a successful season for the Bruins.
The two are proving capable of the task, and have allowed the Bruins to solidify themselves as one of, if not the, best teams in the NHL.