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Thomas Stays Focused

But the B's goalie admitted he's happy the B's took the Northeast crown

Monday, 04.2.2012 / 9:23 AM ET / Features
By John Bishop  - BostonBruins.com
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Thomas Stays Focused
BostonBruins.com -- Bruins Head Coach Claude Julien characterized the B's 2-1 victory over the Rangers best when he said, postgame, "You know for once we got some breaks and instead of the other way around."

However, the B's best breaks in the important victory -- a win that gave Boston the Northeast Division crown and the 2nd overall seed in the Eastern Coference Playoffs -- happened to be highlight reel saves from goaltender Tim Thomas.

"Yeah he saved his best for the end, there’s no doubt about that," said Julien of his goalie's late game heroics. "For two periods, I think we did a pretty good on in front of him and limiting the shots, but they were a desperate team in the third and they’re going to do whatever they had to do to try and tie it up and win it."

But Thomas was there 29 times in the second and third period (33 times overall) as the B's outlasted the Rangers.

"This is a tough building to play in," admitted Thomas. "It’s dark, there’s funny bounces all over the place, and plus they’re a good team - they play solid hockey.

We have a chance to seal it up and to take all the hope out of Ottawa...so it's nice to do that. - Tim Thomas
"Anytime you can come in here towards the end of the year; we need a win to seal up top in the division, I think it’s a good thing."

It was a very good thing as the B's goalie probably earned himself a day or two off beyond Monday's respite. But beyond the rest and the B's 2nd seed in the Eastern Conference Playoffs, Thomas also admitted he is happy that the B's earned another division title.

"It feels good," he said. "Theoretically, we’d have plenty of time to get that extra two points, but why wait?

"We have a chance to seal it up and to take all the hope out of Ottawa...so it’s nice to do that."

As such, Thomas laid it all on the line as the Rangers pressed for a tying goal.

"I felt pretty good, so from my own perspective I just wanted to continue," said the reigning Vezina and Conn Smythe Trophy-winner. "I stayed focused.

"I really wanted to get out of here with a win, and as the third period went on I really wanted a regulation win because I didn’t want to go to overtime or a shootout."

Now, with no practice on Monday and three regular season games remaining on the docket, Thomas might be more of a spectator when the B's take on Pittsburgh (Tuesday in Boston), Ottawa (Thursday in Ontario) and Buffalo (on Saturday, back in Massachusetts).

"I think our goal is to continue to get better and better and build towards the playoffs," said Thomas. "I think we’re heading in the right direction, so the remaining games we have left we should continue to do the same thing.

"Now, we’re not actually playing for position in the conference but we’re still playing for our own momentum and our own confidence going into the playoffs."

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STANDINGS

ATLANTIC DIVISION
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
2 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
3 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
4 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
5 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
6 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
7 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
8 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
P. Bergeron 81 23 32 2 55
L. Eriksson 81 22 25 1 47
M. Lucic 81 18 26 13 44
C. Soderberg 82 13 31 10 44
B. Marchand 77 24 18 5 42
D. Hamilton 72 10 32 -3 42
R. Smith 81 13 27 7 40
T. Krug 78 12 27 13 39
D. Krejci 47 7 24 7 31
C. Kelly 80 7 21 6 28
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
T. Rask 34 21 13 .922 2.30
N. Svedberg 7 5 1 .918 2.33
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