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Rolling Bruins pay a visit to Red Wings
(SportsNetwork.com) - The rolling Boston Bruins will aim for a third consecutive victory when they visit the Detroit Red Wings for Wednesday's Atlantic Division battle at Joe Louis Arena.
The Bruins are coming off consecutive overtime wins against Carolina and Pittsburgh, giving the club an 8-1-1 mark over its past 10 trips to the ice. Boston's strong play in November has vaulted the club to the top of the Atlantic standings, where it leads Tampa Bay by three points for first place.
Wednesday's showdown already marks the third of four scheduled meetings between the Bruins and Red Wings this season. The Original Six rivals are back in the same division following the onset of realignment at the start of the 2013-14 campaign.
The clubs have split the first two meetings this season, both of which were played in Boston. The Red Wings have claimed five of six overall in this series and the B's have lost two straight in the Motor City.
Boston has gone past regulation in each of its last three tilts, losing a shootout decision to St. Louis last Thursday before notching consecutive OT wins over Carolina and Pittsburgh to complete a three-game homestand.
After beating the Hurricanes by a 3-2 score on Saturday, the Bruins overcame a late regulation goal by Sidney Crosby to down Pittsburgh by a 4-3 score on Monday. Torey Krug scored the game-winner 34 seconds into the extra session after Crosby knotted the score at 3-3 with just 0.3 seconds left in the third period.
In overtime, Krug skated unchecked into the left circle and rifled a slap shot that beat Marc-Andre Fleury high to the far side. Boston also got goals from Loui Eriksson and Reilly Smith and 28 saves from Tuukka Rask.
Rask was beat for the tying goal after Crosby was left alone near the right post. After Chris Kunitz put a spinning backhand shot on net, Pittsburgh's star centerman was in perfect position to jam the puck into the net just before the buzzer sounded the end of regulation
The play was reviewed and upheld as a goal. Afterward, Rask explained his reaction to it.
"You think, 'Really? This happened?'" said Rask. "But the game goes on so you can't think about it too much."
Boston will try to pick up a third straight win as the guest on Wednesday before ending November on a two-game homestand. The Bruins are 10-3-2 as the host this season compared to a 6-3-0 mark on the road.
Detroit has won two of its last three games after suffering through an 0-2-5 stretch from Nov. 4-19. The Red Wings last played on Sunday when they notched a 3-1 victory in Buffalo, earning the win despite the absence of star forward Pavel Datsyuk.
Johan Franzen broke a third-period tie with a power-play goal to help Detroit outlast the Sabres at First Niagara Center.
Franzen let go a shot from the right circle and the puck deflected off the leg of Buffalo defenseman Alexander Sulzer and fluttered past Ryan Miller at the 11:43 mark. The Sabres had a chance to pull even on a later man advantage, but couldn't convert with Stephen Weiss serving time for a tripping penalty.
Daniel Alfredsson, back in the lineup after a five-game absence due to a groin injury, scored an empty-netter with 49 seconds left to seal just the second win in the last 10 games for Detroit.
Jonas Gustavsson denied Steve Ott on a penalty shot in the second period, one of 21 saves by the Detroit goaltender.
"So far I think the guys have been helping me a lot," Gustavsson said. "That's what you need as a goalie. You need the guys to help you and sometimes you want to help them too."
Datsyuk, who is suffering from possible concussion symptoms, will miss a second straight game on Wednesday. He is leading Detroit with 12 goals this season and is second on the club with 23 points.
Detroit forward Todd Bertuzzi also will sit out a third straight game on Wednesday due to an upper-body injury.
11/27 11:14:15 ET