Bruins best Habs in Julien's Boston return

Boston Bruins fans give Claude Julien standing ovation in return to TD Garden (video)

It wasn't the return Claude Julien had hoped for.

David Pastrnak and Ryan Spooner each scored an early goal, Tuukka Rask stopped 21 shots and the Bruins beat Montreal 4-1 Wednesday night in Canadiens coach Julien's return to Boston for the first time since he was sacked almost a year ago.

Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid made his return to the lineup after breaking his right fibula while blocking a shot on October 19. "It's an advantage that way. We've been a little bit more up-tempo".

But what followed in a 4-1 win for the B's, a victory that extended their point streak to 14 games, was unlike anything seen in a lifetime of watching the game's greatest rivalry.

Julien was bothered by the play of his team, which had played well lately, going 2-0-2 after a five-game losing streak. "Obviously, it's a disappointing loss, especially with the situation we're in".

"We're trying to do that against everybody, to be honest", Cassidy of his team's style.

Jakub Jerabek scored his first career National Hockey League goal for the Habs just 31 seconds into the game.

While Montreal would jump out to an early lead, the game was dominated by the Bruins.

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"We made some mistakes in the D-zone and stopped playing", Jerabek said. David Pastrnak scored his 18th goal of the season at 6:50 of the first period. The puck appeared to take a deflection on its way to the back of the B's net, possibly off Bruins captain Zdeno Chara.

Marchand's team-leading 19th goal at 3:40 of the third and Krejci's eighth of the season with the net empty at 16:46 put the game out of reach.

Once the tribute was over, the Bruins heeded Julien's words from the morning skate.

"You can't say enough about those plays, those turning points in the game", Cassidy acknowledged. "I appreciate what they did for me.". Thursday will mark the 60th anniversary of his B's debut when he broke the color barrier in the National Hockey League.

And once that power-play chance sailed out of Boston for the Canadiens, the Bruins went right back to their break-neck speed that simply punished Montreal. McQuaid took the spot of Kevan Miller, who was out sick.

"It's nice to be in those situations - you don't want to be - to be put in that situation I think guys thrive off of wanting to kill that and be in those situations", McQuaid, in the lineup after a 36-game layoff, said of the kill, which finished a flawless 2-for-2.

Canadiens: At the Washington Capitals on Friday.

The Bruins will travel to Brooklyn to take on the New York Islanders on Thursday night at 7 p.m. ET.

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