Boston Bruins defeat Pittsburgh Penguins, 5-2

PITTSBURGH - Not even halfway through 2008-09, Tim Thomas feels fresher than he did last season.

Thomas can credit the presence of Manny Fernandez, with whom he has formed the most powerful goaltending tandem in the game. But Thomas also tips his helmet to his teammates for controlling the puck far more than they did last year. That has allowed him to sit back in his crease, relax, and watch the show.

"You get more of a break when you're in goal," Thomas said.


PITTSBURGH - As the player separated from Marc Savard and Phil Kessel in response to the threesome's struggles, Milan Lucic, dropped to the third line, appeared to be the most culpable for the unit's troubles.

But as Bruins coach Claude Julien was quick to point out, it wasn't just Lucic's underwhelming play that led to his displeasure. Savard and Kessel, so good and so dynamic for most of the season, were part of the team's dropoff in work ethic - the characteristic th...