BOSTON (AP) — Brad Marchand really didn’t have an explanation for his recent run. He just wants it to last as long as possible.
Marchand continued his hot scoring stretch with a pair of goals Monday, lifting the Boston Bruins to a 3-2 win over the Los Angeles Kings.
He also had two in Boston’s shootout loss in Chicago on Sunday and has scored six in his past four games.
After scoring just one goal in his initial 14 games this season, he’s had 11 in his past 15.
“When bounces are going your way, you get more confidence,” he said. “I think that’s all that it is. I think early on I didn’t feel confident in anything I was doing. Hopefully it’ll continue.”
The Bruins were also happy about how they played in consecutive games against strong teams, coming off the loss in a Stanley Cup rematch with the Blackhawks on Sunday.
“I’ve gotta be honest here,” Boston coach Claude Julien said. “I was really impressed with how well we played. I would have liked to have gotten the extra point, but to come back with an afternoon game against a team that plays a (physical) game.”
Torey Krug had the other goal for the Bruins, who won at home for the 11th time in 13 games. Backup goaltender Chad Johnson made 21 saves.
“We’re very happy,” Marchand said. “Two very good teams with back-to-back with travel. This game was a really tough one. We’ve got to be happy. We played a great game yesterday.”
Linemate Patrice Bergeron can see Marchand’s confidence growing.
“Well, definitely confidence helps a lot,” he said. “I think that’s got something to do with it, but I think that he is really moving his feet and he’s using his speed to his advantage and he’s creating a lot of plays just by his hockey instincts. He’s taking what’s in front of him, he’s not forcing plays.”
Willie Mitchell and Jeff Carter scored for the Kings. Jonathan Quick stopped 20 shots. But their special teams gave up goals in the opening period.
“We gave up a goal on the power play and penalty kill,” defenseman Drew Doughty said. “We picked it up in the second, but that was too late. You can’t let that happen.”
Los Angeles has lost two straight, but collected points in six of eight (4-2-2).
Marchand scored 18 seconds after Los Angeles had tied it when he one-timed Bergeron’s pass inside the right post by Quick’s glove.
“I actually didn’t see what happened,” Doughty said. “It happened right after. We were talking on the bench. We can’t let that happen. We actually had the momentum there. You can’t even let them get a scoring chance after that.”
Trailing 2-1 with just under 111/2 minutes to play and the Kings skating on a power play, Carter fired a shot past Johnson for his team-leading 19th of the season.
Marchand’s short-handed goal and Krug’s on the power play gave Boston a 2-0 lead after one.
Marchand’s first goal pushed Boston ahead 1-0 just over 12 minutes into the game. His score was filled with stick-handling and persistence after he beat two Kings players before slipping the puck between Quick’s pads.
Bergeron’s pass sent Marchand in one-on-one against Doughty. The Bruins winger shifted around Doughty, but lost control of the puck just before he attempted a shot. After getting it back, alone with three Kings players in front, he shifted around Anze Kopitar before firing a forehand shot.
“I thought he was going to shoot it, so I went down and tried to block it,” Kopitar said. “It went around me and it was a nice move that shouldn’t have happened.”
Krug’s slap shot from the right circle clanged into the net off the right post, giving Boston a 2-0 edge at 17:51.
Los Angeles sliced it to 2-1 early in the second when Mike Richards circled the net and slipped a pass to Mitchell, who one-timed a shot under the crossbar near the right post.
Quick kept it a one-goal game for the rest of the second with a couple of nice stops. He made a sprawling right-pad stop on Reilly Smith’s bid from the edge of the crease and a glove stop on Zdeno Chara.
NOTES: Boston D Adam McQuaid missed the game after leaving Sunday’s in Chicago with what Julien said, he believed, was a leg injury. “He is being evaluated right now by our medical staff or doctors,” Julien said before the game. “I think, right now, it’s a leg injury.” He had no further update after. … Julien also said D Dougie Hamilton, who missed his fourth straight with a concussion, may be able to practice soon. “I haven’t been told yet that he’s totally in with us, but that could come soon,” Julien said. … The Kings played their third of a five-game road trip. They are at Columbus on Tuesday night and Anaheim on Thursday. … Boston is in the midst of playing seven of nine on the road. The Bruins are off until they’re at Philadelphia on Saturday and the New York Islanders on Sunday. … Los Angeles won the only other meeting between the teams 4-2 at home on Jan. 9.