Montreal Canadiens 3-1 Boston Bruins
The Montreal Canadiens got exactly the start they needed when Dale Wiese beat Tuukka Rask just over two minutes into the first period.
Max Pacioretty added to the lead by sniping a goal halfway through the second period. The Canadiens did a wonderful job using their speed to put pressure on the Boston Bruins. But a careless penalty gave the Bruins some life as Jarome Iginla tipped a Torey Krug point shot past Montreal’s Carey Price to cut the lead to just one.
This set up a wild finish to a original six rivalry filled with end to end action. The Bruins peppered Carey Price with shots all game long but couldn't beat him again.
Price stopped 29 shots on the night and didn’t let out many rebounds. Then the unthinkable happened when Bruins captain Zdeno Chara accidentally deflected Daniel Brier's shot into his own goal in the third period.
Unfortunately for the Bruins, that mistake sealed the deal for the Canadians. With the 3-1 win, the Montreal Canadiens have eliminated the President trophy Boston Bruins and will play the New York Rangers in the Eastern Conference finals.
This was a fantastic win for the Montreal Canadiens. They silenced the Boston crowd by jumping to an early two goal lead. They kept their composure and were able to keep the lead.
All four lines were able to contribute in some way throughout the game. Daniel Brier assisted on the first goal and was credited with the third. Brendan Gallagher tallied two assists on the night and Brandon Prust, David Desharnais and Nathan Beaulieu all got assists as well.
After taking a careless penalty, Max Pacioretty redeemed himself by scoring a goal. The defensive core of PK Subban, Andrei Markov and Josh Gorges did a wonderful job blocking shots at various points in the game.
The Canadiens blocked a total of 14 shots in the game. Michael Bournival also had an impressive night. He won some key battles on the boards, took some hits but got up and continued to frustrate the Bruins. He ended the game with one shot on goal. Even though he didn’t get on the scoreboard, I believe he was one of the heroes in this game.
This was a really weird night for the Boston Bruins. The President’s trophy winners certainly aren’t used to going down early. But Tuukka Rask seemed quite nervous in goal.
He gave the puck away on one occasion and failed to react at all when the puck glided across his crease moments before the first goal. He also juggled the puck on several of Montreal’s dump ins.
Captain Zdeno Chara had a very uncharacteristic night as well. He fell down at least four times in the game, took a couple of careless penalties, and unfortunately helped the Canadians by scoring an own goal late in the game.
Brad Marchand and Milan Lucic’s bullying tactics didn’t get the Bruins the response they needed to shift the momentum in the game. Jarome Iginla scored the only goal for the Bruins on the night, but wasn’t able to launch a comeback for his team.
In the end, it’s the Montreal Canadiens who come away with this incredible road victory against the best team in the Eastern Conference.
This was truly an underdog victory and I believe the Montreal Canadiens deserved to win this game. Montreal begins their series against New York on Saturday afternoon. I can’t wait to see how the goaltending battle of Price against Lundqvist is going to unfold at the Bell Centre on Saturday.
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