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Bruins aim for ninth straight win vs. Penguins

Boston (27-5-4) at Pittsburgh (19-13-4), 7:30 pm EST

PITTSBURGH (Ticker) -- The red-hot Boston Bruins attempt to

further solidify themselves as the elite team in the Eastern

Conference when they face the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday.

The conference leader with 58 points, Boston will be looking to

extend its season-long winning streak to nine games in the

opener of this home-and-home series.

Michael Ryder netted the game-winner with just over six minutes

left in the third period Sunday, lifting Boston to a 2-1 victory

over the Atlanta Thrashers.

Phil Kessel also scored and Manny Fernandez made 32 saves for

the Bruins, who are 25-3-1 after opening the campaign 2-2-3.

The Bruins remain nine points clear of the New York Rangers and

Washington Capitals - clubs tied for second in the conference

standings.

Boston, which is wrapping up a five-game road trip, will play

its next six contests at home - including Thursday's home game

against the Penguins.

With the exception of superstars Evgeni Malkin and captain

Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh hasn't look liked the team that

stormed through the conference en route to a Stanley Cup

appearance last season.

Crosby and Malkin have combined for 30 goals and 108 points this

season, but the Penguins have fallen to fourth place in the

Atlantic Division after losing seven of their last 11 games.

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