Series (Game 3 of 4)

Series tied 2-2

Game 1: Saturday, November 30th
Game 2: Monday, January 13th
Game 3: Thursday, January 23rd
Game 4: Saturday, February 8th

Bruins 4

(24-18-1, 54 pts)

Penguins 1

(20-20-5, 49 pts)

8:00 PM ET, January 23, 2003

Mellon Arena, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

1 2 3 T
BOS 2 1 14
PIT 1 0 01

G. Murray (Bruins - RW): Goals: 2, Assists: 1

J. Thornton (Bruins - C): Goals: 0, Assists: 2

A. Raycroft (Bruins - G): Saves: 35, Save Pct.: .972

Busy Bruins: Trade McLaren, light up Pens

PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Glen Murray and goalie Andrew Raycroft gave the Boston Bruins a big lift during the game. The trade news they got afterward provided another one.

Murray scored twice and set up another goal against his former team and the Bruins, awaiting the arrival of new goalie Jeff Hackett, beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-1 Thursday night.

Murray twice beat goalie Sebastien Caron with long shots and assisted on Mike Knuble's go-ahead goal as Boston ended a five-game road losing streak. Despite being only 5-14-2 in their last 21 games, they are 2-0-1 in their last three.

Brian Rolston also scored for Boston in the third period, with rookie Martin Samuelsson assisting for his first NHL point.

With Hackett on the way after being acquired from Montreal in a three-team trade that saw the Bruins finally deal holdout defenseman Kyle McLaren, Raycroft turned aside 35 of 36 shots for his first win in more than two years.

Raycroft, likely headed back to the minors, was glad he didn't hear about the trade until the game ended.

"I'm glad I got one (win) in,'' Raycroft said. "I wouldn't want to go back (to the minors) off my first two.''

The Bruins welcomed the trade, if only because it ends the months of speculation about what they would do with McLaren. It also stabilizes them in net, where Steve Shields (10-8-3) has been inconsistent.

"It's a little bit of closure for everybody,'' Knuble said. "Now it's done with, and everybody can move on.''

The guy likely moving on for now is Raycroft, who caught the Penguins at just the right time. They're struck in an extended scoring slump that has seen them score only once in 10 periods -- Milan Kraft's goal at 10:37 of the first.

Kraft's seventh goal briefly made it 1-1 and ended a Penguins' scoreless streak of 158 minutes, 42 seconds. If not for that goal, Pittsburgh would have broken its scoreless streak record of 183 minutes, 15 seconds set in 1979-80, when coach Rick Kehoe was a player.

Playing without star Mario Lemieux (groin) for the seventh time in eight games, the Penguins -- the NHL's top team on the power play much of the season -- were 0-for-7 with few good chances with the man advantage. They have scored only once on their last 29 power plays.

"We had 36 shots, and that's a lot for us,'' Kehoe said. "We had enough opportunities on the power play and we didn't capitalize. Their goalie came up with some saves, especially in the third period.''

The Penguins tried again to play the take-no-risks, tight-checking style they adopted without Lemieux during a 3-1-1 road trip that saw them get 7 of a possible 10 points.

Caron, a rookie, gave up only six goals during the five games -- his first as an NHL starter -- and had yielded no more than three goals in any start.

But that style doesn't work well when the opponent gets the early lead, as the Bruins did when Murray pounced on Joe Thornton's drop pass to whip a hard slap shot from the high slot that Caron barely saw. Thornton had two assists.

"Everybody played real solid,'' Thornton said. "Andrew, everybody. It was one of the best team efforts we've had all year.''

Kraft tied it at 10:37 of the first after Martin Straka carried the puck from deep in his own end into the Bruins' end. Knuble scored on a power play slightly less than two minutes later after the Penguins couldn't clear the rebound of Thornton's shot.

Murray made it 3-1 early in the second, scoring unassisted for his 27th of the season and fourth goal in three games. Murray gained possession in the neutral zone and, with three Penguins surrounding him, beat Caron from just inside the blue line with a hard wrist shot.

"Everybody has a bad game every now and then,'' Caron said.

Game notes
Raycroft's fifth career victory was his first since Nov. 9, 2000, against Ottawa. ... The road team has won all three games in the season series, with Boston winning twice in Pittsburgh. ... Murray has eight points in three games.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press