Tomas Nosek’s shorthanded goal Saturday, boosting the Bruins to an early 2-0 lead over the Rangers, brought a broad smile to the big Czech center’s face. He blew a kiss to his wife and children in the Garden stands, then quickly settled back into his grinding, broad-shouldered ways as the club’s No. 4 center.
Nosek and Charlie Coyle typically are coach Jim Montgomery’s first and second options as penalty-killing forwards, in part because that gives him two proficient faceoff men — a left stick in Nosek and a right stick in Coyle — for critical draws in the defensive end, when the opposition holds the manpower advantage.
“He’s so good at winning draws,” Montgomery noted after seeing Nosek win 5 of 7 drops vs. the Blueshirts. “I think he was 80 percent going into the third and I think he won every one in the third.”
The individual strengths of Coyle and Nosek, added Montgomery, allow him the luxury of slotting more time for his top two centers, Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci, in offensive situations.
Then, in more defensive situations, such as the PK, Montgomery knows he has the faceoffs covered in either circle with Nosek-Coyle.
Coyle on Saturday rode with newcomer Tyler Bertuzzi and Trent Frederic as his linemates.
“Our best line today,” Montgomery said after the win. “So I gave them some O-zone starts [off faceoffs] because they were playing so well.”
Nosek, back for only the last five games after suffering a fracture in a foot Jan. 19, earlier this season was out of the faceoff mix because of a broken finger.
In his five games back, Nosek has run exceptionally hot at the dot, winning 37 of 54 faceoffs (68.5 percent).
Three of a kind
Dmitry Orlov, the NHL’s No. 1 star last week, is the only Bruins defenseman this season to connect for 3 points in consecutive games.
Orlov scored two first-period goals in Calgary last Tuesday and finished 2-1—3 for the night, then followed 48 hours later with a 1-2—3 in the 7-1 thumping of the Sabres at the Garden.
If you think it has been a while since a Bruins D-man posted consecutive 3-point outings, you … are … correct.
The most recent: Zdeno Chara, March 22-24, 2011. Big Z went 1-2—3 vs. the Devils, then 0-3—3 vs. the Canadiens.
Orlov now has three of the 32 goals scored this season by Bruins back liners. Hampus Lindholm (7) has led the way.
And with a stat your faithful puck chronicler began tracking at midseason, the Bruins now are 23-1-0 in the 24 games in which the blue line corps has delivered a goal.
Not sure that’s anything other than coincidental, but it’s fun.
Collectively, through 82 games, Bruins D-men finished with a scoring line last season of 31-119—150.
Headed into Game 63 Thursday, this year’s blue line bros. have totaled 32-125—157.
Prices to rise
The Bruins on Monday announced a “blended” bump of 10 percent to the prices of 2023-24 season tickets, which means the hit to the wallet varies depending on seat location. On Friday, the season-ticket office emailed many ticket-holders, underscoring that ticket resales are allowed only through the Bruins and their affiliation with Ticketmaster. Season ticket-holders opting to use secondary-market vendors were warned such practice could result in forfeiture of their accounts … During their season-high 10-game winning streak, the Bruins have outscored opponents, 44-17. They also owned an 8-to-1 lead-time advantage of 342:15 to 42:55.
Kevin Paul Dupont can be reached at email@example.com.