ST. LOUIS — David Pastrnak scored the first goal of the game.

That was nothing new; he’s done that more than a handful of times for the Bruins this season.

It was just on a bigger stage at the All-Star Game.

Just 26 seconds into the first game, the 2020 NHL All-Star Game MVP took a pass from the Lightning’s Victor Hedman and tapped it past Washington’s Braden Holtby to put the Atlantic Division ahead en route to a 9-5 win over the Metropolitan Division in the semifinals, which was followed by a 5-4 loss in the final against the Pacific.

“We had a good start and it was fun, but we unfortunately came out on the losing point,” said Pastrnak. “Obviously wanted to win, congratulations to them, it’s definitely a little painful.”

The Bruins winger factored into the first goal of the game for six straight contests from Dec. 27 to Jan. 7, which tied an NHL record. He did that twice Saturday, scoring to lead off the first game and assisting on Hedman’s goal to open the final.

Despite being on the losing end, Pastrnak was chosen as MVP after collecting six points – four goals and two assists.

“He’s our MVP a lot of nights too,” said Bruins Coach Bruce Cassidy, who also coached the Atlantic Division on Saturday night. “I’m used to seeing him go to work. I’m happy for him, good for him. I’m sure he had a great time here, got to play some good players, score some good goals. Too bad we came up a little short, but I’m sure he’d tell you he had a great time.”

The 23-year-old skated primarily with Hedman and Sabres forward Jack Eichel in the 3-on-3 format as he captained the Atlantic team, donning the captain’s “C” for the first time.

“The first shift of game one against the Metro, he backchecked all the way to the blue line, so then I’m like, where is this all year,” said Cassidy. “You just need to put the ‘C’ on him … He was great, he was chatting with guys, we enjoyed the moment. They’re all good guys.”

Pastrnak is the fourth Bruins player in franchise history to win the All-Star MVP, joining Bobby Orr, Ray Bourque and Bill Guerin.

He showed some different moves with his goals, including success on a breakaway. He netted a backhanded breakaway tally 8:28 into the first period to tie the semifinal game at 4-4 after the Atlantic had blown a two-goal lead, and he notched a hat trick on an empty-netter to seal the win.

With 46 seconds left in the first period of the final, Pastrnak deked Canucks goalie Jacob Markstrom to put the Atlantic ahead 3-1.

The MVP award was voted by fans via Twitter, and despite the final loss, it was the perfect way to cap a strong weekend from the Bruins’ young star.

“If that was voted in by fans, I appreciate the love from them,” said Pastrnak. “Probably wasn’t any fans from the St. Louis building, but appreciate the love.”

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