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Thomas Bolsters Bruins

A 40-save performance for the Boston goalie gives the Black & Gold a four-game winning streak

Friday, 01.16.2009 / 8:46 AM / Features
By John Bishop  - BostonBruins.com
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Thomas Bolsters Bruins
Tim Thomas continues to prove that he belongs at next week’s All-Star game in Montreal.

With 40 saves against the New York Islanders, the man called “Tank” is a consistent factor in the Black & Gold’s most recent winning streak and the most obvious reason for the Bruins 2-1 win over the New York Islanders on Thursday night.

“I thought that our team just struggled,” said Boston head coach Claude Julien of the club’s fourth straight win. “We just finished playing Montreal. [That] was a real emotional game and we figured we might run into an emotional let down…but I really didn’t think it would be that bad.

“We weren’t sharp tonight -- we turned pucks over; we lost battles...it was a tough game.

“And, again, our goalie was without a doubt our best player tonight and he held the fort,” he said.

We're fortunate that he played great. - All-Star Center Marc Savard
For his part, Thomas continued to praise his teammates for their efforts in the Boston zone. He was able to see most of the shots coming his way and the goalie gave credit for that to the Bruins defense.

“I think the ‘D’ tried hard in front of me all night,” he said. “Some bounces weren’t going our way.

“[The Islanders] had a couple times where it was in our zone for a while but they didn’t…get a shot off rebounds very often.

“Either I was able to just control the rebound or my ‘D’ did a really good job clearing the rebound so they didn’t get that second and third opportunities,” said Thomas.

Meanwhile the B’s were able to ratchet up their intensity in the second half of the game.

“They had most of [their scoring chances] in the first period and part of the second,” said Thomas. “They didn’t really have that much in the third.

“A couple…but, they had some sneaky good scoring chances through screens and tips.”

David Krejci talked about Thomas’ work and said that the goalie was very important, especially early in the contest.

“You know, Timmy had so many saves today and it if it weren’t for him, I think it would have been a lot different game,” said the young forward. “He was great today, again, and we can be [thankful] for that.”

Marc Savard, who started the Bruins scoring in the second with his 15th goal of the season, had the best synopsis of the night.

“They were ready,” said Savard of the Islanders. “And I’ve been in their situation before.

“You have to be at the top of your game [when] you are playing the first place team. The Red Wings always come to mind when you’re like that. You’re nervous and you don’t want to make mistakes and you’ve got to be ready.”

Savard intimated that there should be no nights off for Boston

“That’s how teams are taking [us on], now, and we have to be ready every night,” said the all-star center. “They played a strong hockey game over there. They got a lot of pucks at the net and Timmy made some big saves.

“We’re fortunate that he played great.”

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