March 9 (UPI) -- BOSTON -- After losing an important game in Ottawa on Monday, the Bruins needed to come out strong and get the jump on the fading and tired Detroit Red Wings.
They did just that.
"It was a tough game in Ottawa. We wanted to respond well. We did that," David Krejci said after his first two-goal and three-point game of the season helped the Bruins to a 6-1 blowout of the Wings, Boston's ninth win in 12 games under interim coach Bruce Cassidy.
Krejci, Brad Marchand and Drew Stafford scored in a 2:25 span of the first period to chase goaltender Jared Coreau, Krejci capped a four-goal first period and Marchand scored again in the second for the Bruins as the Red Wings offered token resistance.
"We played the right way and didn't let off," said Stafford, who scored his first goal in his three games with his new team and also added an assist. "The type of season that Detroit's having it's a little bit different than Ottawa. There's a little bit more room out there, a little bit more time to make some plays."
Boston moved four points ahead of the idle Toronto Maple Leafs for the third spot in the Atlantic Division and three points ahead of the idle New York Islanders in the race for the second wild card. The Leafs and Islanders have two games in hand on the Bruins.
Marchand notched his 31st and 32nd goals of the season. He has seven goals in the last seven games, 15 in the last 17 and 22 in the last 26.
"I want this team to feel they can win every night,'' said Cassidy, who is 6-1 at home and has yet to suffer two straight losses since replacing the fired Claude Julien. "I don't want them to be cocky, but they should be confident. They have to be."
Rask stopped 26 shots for his 31st win of the season and had a shutout until Niklas Kronwall scored his first 2016-17 goal with 2:25 left in the second period.
The Red Wings, in last place in the Eastern Conference, suffered their fourth straight loss and fell to 3-8-2 in their last 13 games as they fade from playoff contention, likely ending a run of 25 straight playoff seasons. This was the end of a five-game trip after losing at Toronto on Tuesday night.
"I don't think they were working hard to get chances against us," said Detroit's Henrik Zetterberg, held of the scoresheet after coming in with 22 points in the last 22 games. "We were way too easy to play against. They were just skating by us in the neutral zone and we weren't winning the battles in our own end. You can't play like that."
The Bruins, who matched their season high for goals in a game, are 10-1-1 in their last 12 games against Detroit, going 3-0-1 this season.
Bruins winger Tim Schaller left the game with a lower-body injury after falling skates first into the end boards. He will be evaluated Thursday.
The Red Wings held a 6-2 shots advantage before the Bruins struck. First, Krejci went around Danny DeKeyser to score at 11:07, with Stafford collecting an assist. Then Pastrnak lobbed the puck into the Detroit zone and Marchand slipped between two defensemen to score at 12:08.
Pastrnak then carried the puck into the slot and lost it before Stafford picked it up and beat Coreau on the glove side to end the goalie's night at 13:32 -- in his first start since Feb. 12.
Enter Petr Mrazek, who had been resting after eight straight starts. In the final minute of the period, Dylan Larkin coughed the puck up in front of his net and Krejci picked it up and scored, his first two-goal game since April 1.
Mrazek and Rask made big saves before Marchand scored on a breakaway to make it 5-0. But 40 seconds later, Kronwall one-timed his first of the season from the right point.
-- The Red Wings recalled G Jimmy Howard from his minor league rehab and he will join the team for Friday's home game against the Chicago Blackhawks.
-- With C Ryan Spooner out indefinitely with a concussion suffered Monday night, the Bruins recalled RW Austin Czarnik and put RW Jimmy Hayes back in the lineup, with LW Peter Cehlarik a healthy scratch and RW Drew Stafford taking his place on the team's second line with David Krejci and David Pastrnak.
-- G Petr Mrazek went 3-4-1 playing the previous eight games for Detroit.
-- The Bruins host the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday and head west on a four-game road trip that actually ends in Toronto.
-- Wednesday was Irish Heritage Night at TD Garden.