BOSTON -- David Pastrnak was glad to have a chance to be out on the ice in the closing minutes of a tie game on Saturday.
Pastrnak took a long pass from David Krejci, went 1-on-1 with defenseman Christopher Tanev, stopped, drew the puck back and beat Ryan Miller with his 25th goal of the season to give the Boston Bruins a 4-3 victory over the Vancouver Canucks.
The Bruins gave interim coach Bruce Cassidy his second victory in as many games.
"I had a couple turnovers ... I went out there two minutes before the end of the game," Pastrnak said of his spectacular goal with two minutes left. "Coach put me back there.
"So, it feels good," said Pastrnak, whose first-period giveaway in the offensive zone led to a 3-on-1 and the Canucks' first goal. "I really felt bad about the turnovers. Learn from it, you know? It was a tough shift for me, but better now."
In the last three games, Pastrnak has five goals and four assists, getting hot again after a long dry spell.
"It was one of those things that Pasta was open, gave him the puck, and then, next thing we knew, it went in," said Krejci, who had two assists.
"But I felt like we were really close as a line all night and it was nice that it finally went in and that was the game."
The pair was joined by fellow Czech Peter Cehlarik, who was making his NHL debut, and Pastrnak wound up with his third goal in two games under Cassidy.
Cassidy, an assistant under Claude Julien, took over when Julien was fired on Tuesday and led the Bruins (28-23-6) to a 6-3 home victory over the San Jose Sharks on Thursday night.
Boston has a chance to sweep a three-game homestand, if the Bruins can defeat the rival the Montreal Canadiens on Sunday night.
The hated Habs, however, have won nine straight games (including the Winter Classic at Gillette Stadium) in the Boston area dating to their last loss in Boston Jan. 12, 2012.
"Too early maybe; we've kind of been here," Boston's Ryan Spooner said when asked about a turnaround for an up-and-down team. "I think the problem this season has been we've played good for maybe three or four games, then maybe not as good for a couple games.
"So I think with our team now, we've got (25) games left, it's going to be about being more of a consistent team, and I think if we can do that, we should be fine."
Pastrnak's heroics came after the Bruins twice blew one-goal leads and also gave backup goalie Anton Khudobin his second win of the season.
Khudobin, whose season has been a disaster after signing a two-year contract to return to Boston, played well, making 29 saves in only the second Boston victory of the season not recorded by Tuukka Rask.
Khudobin, winning for the first time (in the NHL) since Dec. 1, improved to 2-5-1 and the backups as a group are 2-10-2.
The Canucks, who tied the game 3-3 on a power play goal by Markus Granlund with 5:37 left, and put the pressure on Khudobin late, Henrik Sedin hitting a post, but failing to score.
"Even going into the third we're at 2-2 and we gave one up early in the third -- we have to be a little bit better than that," said Vancouver coach Willie Desjardins, whose team is trying to hang in the Western Conference playoff chase. "To give it up with two minutes left is hard."
Defensemen Kevan and Colin Miller and Frank Vatrano also scored for the Bruins, who improved to 14-13-0 at home. Vatrano also had two assists and was the game's No. 1 star.
After Bo Horvat's goal gave the Canucks a 1-0 lead on his 100th career point 4:56 into the game, Kevan Miller and Vatrano scored before the end of the first period.
Vatrano scored the Bruins' 10th power play goal in the last seven games. Alexandre Burrows tied the game for Vancouver with a goal in the final second of the second period.
Miller made 28 saves in the loss as the Canucks fell to 7-17-3 on the road.
-- Bruins D Zdeno Chara (illness) returned after missing Thursday night's game.
-- Canucks RW Loui Eriksson, who scored 62 goals for the Bruins over the last three seasons, 30 of them last year, made his return to TD Garden.
-- Fourteen members of the champion New England Patriots family, including Super Bowl hero James White and Matthew Slater, were on hand for a puck drop before the game, White dropping the puck. Defensive coordinator Matt Patricia and his wife, Riana, were the stars of the Kiss Cam in the third period.
-- Canucks LW Sven Baertschi missed his second straight game because of a concussion, and was sent home from the trip.
-- The Canucks play in Buffalo on Sunday night.