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David Pastrnak-Patrice Bergeron-Brad Marchand line sticks together again for the Bruins

Taylor Hall set the screen on Canucks goalie Thatcher Demko and had a great view for Patrice Bergeron's power-play goal.Jim Davis/Globe Staff

With his team in a bit of a scoring rut at five on five, Bruins coach Jim Montgomery is using his nuclear option.

Montgomery kept David Pastrnak riding with Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand for Sunday’s 5-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks, keeping together a line that connected for a hand-eye special in Saturday’s win in Buffalo.

With the clock set to expire in less than two minutes and the Sabres hunting the tying goal, Bergeron kicked a neutral-zone turnover to his stick. He batted the puck a few feet ahead to Pastrnak, who collected it midair, spun and fed Marchand in traffic. A quick dish to Bergeron, an even quicker one-timer, and the Bruins had their 13th win in 15 games.


The Bruins have eight goals at even strength in the past five games, after Connor Clifton and Pavel Zacha tallied Sunday. Montgomery loves what his fourth line, anchored by Nick Foligno and Tomas Nosek (empty-net goal) has been giving him, but he doesn’t want to rely on them to produce scoring chances.

The resulting shift put Jake DeBrusk on the second line, with David Krejci and Taylor Hall. Montgomery wanted “speed, puck possession, creating offense and ending plays” from that trio. He believed DeBrusk, with five goals and six assists in his first 15 games, had established himself as a consistent, top-six winger.

“When he’s on top of his game and he’s winning battles and he’s on pucks and using his speed to put people on his heels, I don’t think it matters who Jake plays with,” Montgomery said. “He’s going to add offense to any line.”

Montgomery watched Marchand-Bergeron-Pastrnak from afar during previous stops in Dallas and St. Louis. He prefers scheming along with them to against them.

“They’re just dominant at both ends of the ice,” he said. “You get three players like that together — like that play last night, that was a pretty special play.”


Power play it forward

A shorthanded goal against Saturday in Buffalo didn’t dissuade Montgomery from keeping his five-forward power-play unit together. A few shorthanded breakaways on Sunday did have him putting defenseman Charlie McAvoy at the point. He tinkered with formations throughout the game.

The coach has the sense he can get results regardless.

“We’ve done a lot of things like that,” Montgomery said. “Sometimes you get a feel for who’s going.”

Last Monday against St. Louis — when Montgomery first played Krejci at the point with Marchand, Bergeron, Pastrnak and DeBrusk — Marchand scored the winning goal on the power play. The unit went 2 for 2.

Pavel Zacha (left) and Connor Clifton both scored goals at even strength against the Canucks.Jim Davis/Globe Staff

The five-forward power play followed that with a 0 for 5 performance against the Flames and a 1 for 3 in Buffalo, with Bergeron netting a second-period goal on a kick-to-the-stick, backhand flick. Bergeron’s first of the game was the tying goal in a 3-1 win, the Bruins in a hole because Tage Thompson undressed Krejci on a shorthanded rush before tucking it past Keith Kinkaid.

On an early power play, Krejci committed a stick foul on a shorthanded breakaway.

“It’s working right now,” Montgomery said of the five-forward unit before Sunday’s puck drop. “It’s feast or famine with them, right? But we have four power-play goals in (13) attempts. That’s pretty good numbers.”

499 wins since hoisting the Cup

Remember that 2011 Stanley Cup Final against the Canucks? (Bet you do.) The Bruins won their 499th regular-season game since then, tied with Pittsburgh for most in the NHL in that span … Hampus Lindholm had his second three-assist game in the last two weeks (he went 1-3–4 and scored the overtime winner in Pittsburgh) …A.J. Greer drew in on the fourth line, replacing the struggling Craig Smith. The latter, who is 1-2–3 for the season, was scratched for the sixth time in 16 games. Greer (3-3–6) was playing for the first time after three straight DNPs … Jack Studnicka was the No. 4 right wing for the Canucks. The 23-year-old Studnicka, dealt to Vancouver on Oct. 27 for goaltender Michael DiPietro and defense prospect Jonathan Myrenberg, was appearing in his seventh game with his new club (1-1–2). He scored the winning goal on Nov. 8 at Ottawa … The Bruins surprised onlookers when they arrived for warmups wearing their white “Pooh 2.0″ alternate jerseys. The Canucks were in their traditional road whites. NHL rules state that teams must wear contrasting light and dark uniforms, with the home team getting final say. The Bruins, who were not slated to wear their white “Reverse Retro” garb per the uniform schedule they released last month, changed into their black sweaters for the game.


Matt Porter can be reached at matthew.porter@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter: @mattyports.