After a dramatic, last-second 2-1 victory over the San Jose Sharks Thursday, the Bruins landed atop the Eastern Conference, tied with Pittsburgh and Toronto with 14 points apiece.
The Bruins’ team defense is one reason for their early success. They have given up only 13 goals in nine games, second only to Colorado, which had allowed 12 in nine games going into Friday’s game.
But goalie Tuukka Rask is surely the primary reason. He is third in the NHL in save percentage at .957, fourth in goals against average at 1.26, and tied for third in wins with six.
After stopping 38 of 39 shots from the Shark sharpshooters, he drew praise from all corners of the locker room, and even the locker room down the hall. Full story for BostonGlobe.com subscribers.