Kessel, Bruins chill Penquins in shootout


BOSTON (AP) – Phil Kessel scored the game-winner in the shootout and Marc Savard had a goal and two assists to lead the Boston Bruins to a 5-4 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday night.

The Bruins climbed back from deficits of 2-0 and 4-3 to beat the Penguins for the ninth straight time. Pittsburgh’s last win against Boston came on Nov. 1, 2003, and its last win in Boston was Feb. 8, 2003.

Hannu Toivonen recovered from a shaky first two periods to record his first win in three months for the Bruins. Toivonen, whose last win came on Oct. 19 against Calgary, allowed four goals on 21 shots through two periods before saving 12 shots in the third to force overtime.

After allowing Erik Christensen to score on Pittsburgh’s first shootout attempt, Toivonen turned back Evgeni Malkin, Sidney Crosby and Sergei Gonchar to set up Kessel’s game-winner.

Glen Murray, Brad Stuart and Marco Sturm also scored in regulation for Boston.

Malkin scored twice and Jordan Staal and Ryan Malone each added goals for the Penguins.

In his sixth game back after missing nearly a month following Dec. 11 surgery for testicular cancer, Kessel beat Pittsburgh goalie Marc-Andre Fleury to the right as Boston won for the third time in 10 games.

On Wednesday, Kessel scored two goals in Boston’s 6-3 loss in Buffalo.

Pittsburgh lead 4-3 midway through the third period, but was unable to capitalize on a 5-on-3 power play that lasted 1 minute, 54 seconds. Toivonen survived a Pittsburgh flurry, and Crosby, the NHL’s leading scorer, hit the top post on the Penguins’ best scoring chance during the power play.

Following the Pittsburgh advantage, Savard rebounded a Murray shot and beat an out-of-place Fleury to the right to tie it at 4 14:38.

Fleury saved 40 shots, including nine in overtime, but he saved just 3-of-5 attempts in the shootout to suffer the loss.

Notes: Neither team committed a penalty in the first period. … Malone is one point away from 100 for his career. … With 23 goals and 23 assists, Malkin leads all rookies in goals and points. … Boston C Wayne Primeau missed his second game with a shoulder injury.

… Savard has recorded a point in five straight games.