Chris Kelly has a good sense of humor and is the ultimate team guy, so it was difficult to tell from the outside if going without a goal in the first 14 games of the season was gnawing at the third line center.

Thankfully Kelly and the Bruins don’t have to worry about it anymore as the two-way center potted his first goal of the season in Boston’s solid 4-1 victory over the Florida Panthers at BB&T Center.

“It’s always nice to score,” said Kelly. “That one was a long time coming, so hopefully it’s a sign of good things to come.”

It was a little bit luck and a little bit being the right guy in the right place at the right time. But sometimes that’s what it takes to climb out of a slump and finally get things moving offensively for a player that’s always been defense, penalty killing and face-offs before offense.

“We talked about that. [Kelly] is one of those guys that puts a lot of pressure on himself,” said Claude Julien. “To be able to get that monkey off his back is a positive. Though he hadn’t scored yet [leading up to Sunday] I felt like his game had really come along in the last few weeks.

“As you all know he’s on the penalty kill, but his skating and his timing is coming along. You’re starting to see him turn the corner in regard to his play.”

Kelly’s goal was actually a power play strike, which doubles his career output on the power play with the Bruins. Claude Julien had tossed the third line on the ice in the closing seconds of the man advantage to prepare for the shift following the power play in the second period, but they gave the Bruins coach the bonus plan.

“They scored with eight seconds left [on the power play],” said Julien. “His comment was ‘that was easy’ so I told him to tell the rest of the power play guys that.”