BOSTON BRUINS forward Milan Lucic knows what the league is trying to do and understood the reason for his one-game suspension despite the fact that he didn't totally agree with it.
Lucic sat out last night's 3-2 win over visiting Montreal because he was suspended without pay by the league for hitting Flyers forward Zac Rinaldo from behind and into the boards in the second period of a 6-0 win on Saturday.
"I think it's good that it's in the back of players' mind now that the NHL just isn't a place to just be running around recklessly anymore, and I think it's a good thing," he said before Boston faced the Canadiens. "It's good to see that they're aware to keep the game safer and try to take head injuries ultimately out of the game."
But he said he was trying to avoid hitting Rinaldo in the back.
"I did everything I could to try to get his shoulder," he said.
He received a 5-minute major for the hit and a game misconduct. By being suspended, he forfeited $22,072.07. He is eligible to return Friday night against Florida.
Last night, David Krejci scored off his skate to break a second-period tie, and Tim Thomas stopped 33 shots to help lead the Bruins to their fifth consecutive win.
Benoit Pouliot and Brad Marchand also scored for the Bruins, who have won 19 of 22 since losing back-to-back games to Montreal at the end of October.
Carey Price made 28 saves and Tomas Plekanec scored for Montreal, which lost its third straight game - its second in a row since coach Jacques Martin was fired and replaced by Randy Cunneyworth.
In other games *
At Toronto, Dustin Brown scored twice, including the only goal of a shootout as the Los Angeles Kings defeated the Maple Leafs, 3-2.
* At Dallas, Michael Ryder scored the go-ahead goal at 6:42 of the third period after Dallas had wasted a three-goal lead, and the Stars went on to 5-3 victory over the Anaheim Ducks.
* At Edmonton, Drew Miller's third-period goal led the Detroit Red Wings to a 3-2 win over the Oilers.
* At Vancouver, Henrik Sedin had a goal and an assist to lead the Canucks to a 4-0 win over the Minnesota Wild.
Calgary forward Rene Bourque was suspended by the NHL for two games without pay because he hit Chicago's Brent Seabrook from behind in Sunday's game.
The league said Bourque will lose just over $36,000 for the hit he made at 15:25 of the first period. He got a 5-minute major and a game misconduct on the play.
He will be able to return Friday at Vancouver.
* Buffalo's leading goal-scorer Thomas Vanek missed practice due to an upper-body injury, and the team called up two players from the minors.
Vanek was injured during a loss at Pittsburgh on Saturday.
Forwards Derek Whitmore and Marcus Foligno were promoted from AHL Rochester.