Patrice Bergeron surpassed one milestone shortly before reaching another.
Bergeron had four goals and an assist while leading the Boston Bruins to 7-1 rout of the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday night, topping the 700-point mark for his career and tying a club record for goals in a game.
“It was one of those nights where the puck was going in,” said Bergeron, the 16th player in Bruins history with a four-goal game.
“Last time I did that I was 16 years old. I don’t know what to think of it, to be honest.”
Bergeron, Boston’s second pick in the 2003 draft, needed three points for 700 in his career and reached the mark with two goals and an assist in the first period. He added two more in the first 10:45 of the second, making him the first Bruin with four goals since Dave Andreychuk on Oct. 28, 1999 against Tampa Bay.
“It’s not just a night like tonight. It’s every night. He does so much for this hockey club,” Bruins captain Zdeno Chara said.
Bergeron’s linemates also had a big night. Brad Marchand assisted on all of Bergeron’s goals and David Pastrnak had a goal and two assists for the Bruins, who scored on their first two shots and led 5-1 after the first period.
Anton Khudobin had 27 saves as Boston improved to 8-0-2 in its last 10 games.
Jordan Staal scored a power-play goal for Carolina in the first period and Scott Darling stopped 23 of 28 shots in relief of Cam Ward, who was pulled after allowing two goals on two shots.
“I didn’t think we had too many sustained shifts where we had pressure and we actually won shifts and built a game,” Carolina coach Bill Peters said. “We didn’t have a lot of pushback or a lot of mental toughness there.”
Bergeron shined despite fighting a cold. He said he got some extra rest when Boston’s game Thursday night against the Florida Panthers was postponed because of the fierce winter storm that swept up the East Coast. He put Boston up 1-0 with a short-handed goal 3:14 into the game, then set up Pastrnak for a power-play goal that put Boston up 3-1 at 9:04.
After Jake DeBrusk gave the Bruins a 4-1 lead on a tip-in 10:22 into the game, Marchand set up Bergeron for a one-timer from the right circle for point No. 700.
Bergeron scored again 5:36 into the second off a pass from Marchand, and Bruins fans celebrated with a wave of hats onto the ice. It was just the second career hat trick for Bergeron, whose only other three-goal game was during a 6-0 win over Ottawa on Jan. 11, 2011.
“We were hoping to get him to six, but it didn’t work out,” Marchand said.
Marchand and Pastrnak set up Bergeron again at 10:45 of the second for another one-timer from the left post for a 7-1 Boston lead.
Ward stopped 21 shots in a 4-0 win over Pittsburgh on Thursday for his first shutout of the season but lasted just 5:43 on Saturday. Bergeron beat him with a wrist shot to the glove side with Carolina on a power play early in the first, then Riley Nash scored again for Boston on another wrist shot past Ward’s glove.
It was the 41st game of the season for the Hurricanes, who were 5-1-1 in their previous seven.
“Not the way we want to come into the midpoint of the season, but the reality is we didn’t play very well,” Peters said.
NOTES: Boston hasn’t lost in regulation since a 5-3 defeat against Washington on Dec. 14. … C Marcus Kruger returned to the Hurricanes after missing four games with a lower-body injury. … The game was the first of three meetings this season between Boston and Carolina. … Carolina last beat Boston in regulation 4-2 on April 13, 2013.
Hurricanes: Visit Tampa Bay on Tuesday night.
Bruins: Complete a back-to-back set at Pittsburgh on Sunday night.