Thomas trumps Chicago; Boston holds off Blackhawks late.


CHICAGO - The Boston Bruins came within inches of blowing a 4-0 lead. But Tim Thomas saved them with his catching glove. Glen Murray, Mark Mowers, Milan Jurcina, Patrice Bergeron and Marc Savard scored, and Boston held on for a 5-3 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks last night. The Bruins, who led, 4-0, after two periods, improved to 4-0-1 in their last five games and 5-1-1 in their last seven. But Chicago rallied on goals by Jim Wisniewski, Bryan Smolinski and Denis Arkhipov in a 4:19 span early in the third to cut it to 4-3. Thomas, who stopped 37 shots, made his most spectacular save with 1:44 left in the third. With the score still 4-3, he sprawled across the crease to snare Jeff Hamilton's point-blank attempt. "It was actually an, `Oh, no!' moment, as in, `Oh, no! He's got a wide-open net,'" Thomas said. "I was just trying to stay with him. It felt great to make that save. "But it was 4-0 going into the third period. I had no idea a save at the end of the third period was going to be a big save." Savard's empty-net, power-play goal with 11 seconds left sealed Boston's victory. Boston coach Dave Lewis was satisfied with the win, but more impressed by Thomas' focus. "That was a good one (save)," Lewis said. "He never quits on a puck. That's what goalies are supposed to do. Winning a game is never a bad thing. You try to draw from your experiences. Our guys found a way to win. Maybe two or three months ago, we'd have lost this game." Bergeron extended his point streak to 10 games. He has six goals and 11 assists during the span. Chicago's Nikolai Khabibulin made his 10th straight start, but was pulled for the first time this...

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