Desperation, luck work for Bruins

– If the Boston Bruins want an example of what's needed in the final few games to make the playoffs, they can simply watch a replay of the first period against the New York Rangers.

Milan Lucic scored twice in the first 10 minutes, Carl Soderberg also scored in the first period, and the Bruins spoiled New York goaltender Henrik Lundqvist's return after a long layoff with a 4-2 victory over the Rangers.

The Bruins moved ahead 1-0 less than 2 minutes into the game when a rebound caromed into the net off Lucic's right skate. The goal was upheld on review. The Bruins went on to build a 3-0 lead after one.

"Everything kind of kept rolling after we got that break on the first goal," Lucic said. "It's good to see us step up and play the way we can play."

Rick Nash scored his 40th goal for New York. Lundqvist, who missed seven weeks after a puck hit his neck, stopped 26 shots in his return.

"Obviously not the start I was looking for," he said.

HIGHLIGHTS

•IN BUNCHES: Daniel Winnik, Steve Downie and Sidney Crosby scored in a 4-minute, 8-second stretch of the third period, rally the Pittsburgh Penguins to a 3-2 victory over the visiting Coyotes.

•SHOOTOUT SUCCESS: Brent Burns got the winning goal in the shootout for the visiting Sharks in a 3-2 victory over the Flyers.

•THEY'RE IN: Carey Price's 41st victory clinched a playoff spot for Montreal, which beat Florida 3-2 on Max Pacioretty's overtime goal … Nashville became the first Western Conference team to clinch a playoff berth with a 4-3 win over the host Capitals … Anaheim also is playoff-bound after its 3-2 road victory over the Islanders.

•HOT HAND: Petr Mrazek earned his fourth career shutout as the host Red Wings beat Tampa Bay 4-0.

•HOME AWAY FROM HOME: The Blue Jackets won their sixth in a row overall and eight straight on the road, 4-2 over the Blues.

• THREE, AND MORE: Tyler Bozak had a hat trick — all in the third period — and assisted on Eric Brewer's winning overtime goal in Toronto's 4-3 home victory over Ottawa.

ASSOCIATED PRESS