EDMONTON, Alberta — It has been a year to forget for left winger Matt Beleskey. He started slowly, then suffered a knee injury that kept him out of the lineup for almost seven weeks.

His return from that injury has been anything but smooth.

And Thursday night, his buzzard luck returned when he took a hard snap shot from Patrice Bergeron off his head when he was standing in front of the net with 11 seconds to play in the Bruins’ 7-4 blowout loss to the Oilers.

But he’s showing signs of breaking through. He scored the big insurance goal early in the third period in Calgary on Wednesday and also chipped in on the penalty kill that did not allow the Flames a shot on net in three tries.

Interim coach Bruce Cassidy was pleased with the pace of his game on Wednesday.

“We want to see it there for a consistent period of time. (Wednesday in Calgary) was by far his best game, not just because he scored. I loved his backchecking efforts, his reloads, he was on the puck, he was physical, he was involved in the penalty kill. (David Backes) gets hurt, so he gets a little power-play time and he goes to the front of the net. All facets of the game,” said Cassidy.

It was his gritty play that got him dinged Thursday night when, with the game out of reach, he had parked himself in front of the net and took the brunt of the Bergeron shot off the side of the head. He needed some assistance to get off the ice and he was bleeding.

“I don’t have an update on Matt. He’s a hard-nosed kid and hopefully he’s all right,” said Cassidy. “That’s very unfortunate for him.”


PANTHERS 4, RANGERS 3: Aleksander Barkov scored a third-period goal and added the winner in the shootout as Florida won at New York.

Jaromir Jagr had two assists and passed Hall of Famer Gordie Howe for the most points after turning 40 with 269.

PENGUINS 6, DEVILS 4: Sidney Crosby scored twice to move into a tie for the NHL lead with 37, and Pittsburgh won at home against New Jersey.