It only took over five periods but the Bruins finally woke up this holiday weekend, in the third period Sunday in Buffalo. Boston (22-8-4) scored twice in the third which was enough to beat the Sabres (13-17-6), 2-0, at First Niagara Center.
The B’s were able to bounce back from their lifeless 3-1 loss in Philadelphia Saturday to salvage some points (they pulled within one of Montreal).
Anton Khudobin (7-3-0) made 26 saves for his first shutout as a Bruin and second of his brief (17 starts) NHL career. Boston’s first line provided all the offense as David Krejci scored the game-winner at 12:54 then Nathan Horton gave the Bruins some breathing room with a goal less than three minutes later.
Krejci’s goal (his 8th of the season) was the result of going into the dirty area around Buffalo goaltender Ryan Miller (29 saves) and putting in a rebound. Horton and Matt Bartkowski (his first NHL point) had the assists.
Horton’s goal came from an exquisite pass by Krejci as all Horton had to do was redirect it for his 11th goal of the season (third straight game with a goal). Milan Lucic had the second assist.
Boston returns home to face Ottawa (19-10-6) on Tuesday (7 p.m., NESN) at TD Garden. The Bruins are four points up on the Senators with a game in hand so it’s an important meeting but it also serves as the last contest before the 2013 NHL trade deadline which happens on Wednesday at 3 p.m.
Follow Metro Boston Bruins beat writer Richard Slate on Twitter @RichSlate