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Determined Zamuner chips in

If the last stretch has been difficult on the Bruins as a whole, it's been even tougher on veteran forward Rob Zamuner.


On Dec. 16, when the team was in Montreal, Zamuner found out he had cleared waivers and was waiting to see what was going to happen to him. That night, playing against the Canadiens, Zamuner was checked hard by forward Darren Langdon and hit the ice face-first, suffering a broken nose. He played the next two games but then was a healthy scratch for Monday's game in New York against the Rangers.

Last night, he finally got some good news. Zamuner scored the Bruins' only goal in a 1-1 overtime tie with the Tampa Bay Lightning, a team for which Zamuner used to serve as captain.

His goal, his second of the season, came at 4:18 of the second period, giving the Bruins a 1-0 lead. Zamuner, along with linemates Brian Rolston and P.J. Axelsson, provided a spark against the Lightning, and he logged more ice time than usual.

Through his first 23 games, he averaged just 10 minutes 12 seconds of ice time. Last night, he played 14:27 over 18 shifts and tied with defenseman Dan McGillis with a team-high three shots on net.

When asked about his travails, Zamuner said he was past the point of worrying about things he can't control.

"At first you're obviously disappointed," said Zamuner. "When you get in the lineup, you're a little stiff and a little nervous with the puck but you get to the point where you just go out there and have fun and that's what I'm trying to do and whatever happens, happens. I can control what I do on the ice and that's what I'm trying to do."

Moran sprains ankle

The Bruins lost defenseman Ian Moran early in the first period to what coach Mike Sullivan termed "a high ankle sprain." No further information was available. He's expected to be re-evaluated and a prognosis likely will become known after the Christmas break . . . Desperation has been the order of the day for the Bruins lately. After the disappointing loss to the Rangers, the Bruins were deflated but said they don't believe they're playing as badly as their record over the last month indicates. "We came out with a good effort," said center Brian Rolston of the performance against the Rangers. "The last couple of games we've played better. We've played good hockey and we're close and we know it." "We're getting [chances] and they're not going in," said Rolston, clearly frustrated by the futility. "Even when they're almost for-sure goals, well, nothing is a for-sure goal, but [when they're close] something happens. That's the way the game is. Sometimes you get the breaks and sometimes you don't."

Samsonov recovering

Left wing Sergei Samsonov, who continues to recover from a sprained left knee suffered Dec. 11 against the Capitals, was on the ice yesterday morning and will return sometime after the break. The logical plan, provided Samsonov doesn't have any setbacks, would be to have him return against Washington Tuesday. That would give him two practices and two morning skates to get his legs under him . . . Goalie Andrew Raycroft, who started against the Lightning, played in his 10th straight game (nine starts). Raycroft has allowed two goals or fewer in 15 of his 22 complete games. Last night, Raycroft was opposed by Nikolai Khabibulin, who was appearing in his seventh straight game . . . Axelsson notched the 100th assist of his career . . . Right wing Marty Lapointe needs one point to achieve 300 for his career . . . The club's annual Wives Carnival will be held at the FleetCenter Jan. 4. The early-bird session is sold out. However, tickets do remain for the general session (3:30-6:30 p.m.) and are available by calling (617)-624-BEAR. Prices are $15 for adults and $7 for children ages 5-12. Kids under age 5 are admitted free.

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