NHL Playoffs: Bruins Stage Comeback, Kings Triumph In Overtime

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Bob DeChiara USA TODAY Sports

Montreal Canadiens at Boston Bruins – BOS wins 5-3, Series tied 1-1

There was cause for concern for Montreal very early on. P.K. Subban and Brad Marchand collided in the Boston zone and hit the ice together. As Marchand was getting up, it appeared he may have cut Subban across his wrist with his skate by accident. After missing the early part of a power play that came shortly after, Subban would return to the ice, seemingly no worse for the wear.

Boston got a 5-on-3 with under 12 minutes left in the period for a full minute and could not convert. There were a couple of big saves by Carey Price but they really couldn’t generate a lot of pressure. They would take the lead at five-on-five, though. A pass to Daniel Paille found him alone in the slot and his shot deflected off of Canadiens defenseman Francis Bouillion and past Carey Price for the 1-0 lead. The Bruins finished the period with a 13-6 shot advantage.

It wouldn’t take long for Montreal to tie the game early in the second period. A neutral zone turnover led to a scramble in front of Tuukka Rask. Tomas Plekanec corralled the puck, got it to a pinching Mike Weaver, who then fired it through a maze of bodies and past Rask just 1:09 in to the second period. The Habs would outshoot the Bruins 8-3 through the first half of the second period, mostly thanks to some bad neutral zone turnovers by Boston.

Montreal would take the lead on a 4-on-3 power play. A slap pass from Subban found Thomas Vanek’s stick and he promptly redirected it to the top shelf over Rask’s glove. A very eventful period that saw 28 total shots (15 for Montreal, 13 for Boston) would end with the Habs still on a brief power play from a bench minor by Boston. Boston would be a bit unfortunate to this point, hitting both a crossbar and a post through 40 minutes.

Montreal would open the scoring of the third period with another shot from the point from Subban that found the stick of Vanek again, who tipped it over Rask again. Dougie Hamilton would bring the puck over the goal line and he ripped a puck past a screen Price to make it 3-2. Patrice Bergeron would tie the game for Boston just over three minutes later. A harmless shot from the boards was deflected by Bouillion again and over the shoulder of Price to make it 3-3. The Bruins would take a lead with their third goal in a little over 5 minutes and 30 seconds off a shot from Reilly Smith. That would be the deciding goal as the Bruins would hold the lead the rest of the way to earn the split at home.

Zdeno Chara and Hamilton led the way for Boston with double-digit CorsiForRelative ratings each, 22.6-percent (team-leading) and 15.1-percent respectively.

Los Angeles Kings at Anaheim Ducks – LAK wins 3-2 (OT), LAK leads series 1-0

The Kings would open the scoring on their second power play of the game at little before the half-way mark of the first period. A nice shovel backhand pass coming out of the corner from Marian Gaborik found a pinching Alec Martinez, who in turn found the back of the net. It wouldn’t be long until Anaheim tied the game up. Ryan Getzlaf rushed wide, cut the puck back from below the goal line and Matt Beleskey finished it to tie the game 1-1. The Kings out-attempted the Ducks 12-11 at all strengths in the period but the Ducks held the Kings without a shot on goal after Los Angeles scored.

The Ducks would start the second with a lot of pressure, hitting the post twice in the first five minutes. From Martinez’s goal until 6:33 into the second period, the Kings failed to register a shot, spanning more than 17 minutes. The period would end without much action, though the Ducks would keep up the pressure through most of the period.

The Ducks would take the lead just over eight minutes into the third period. A rush by Patrick Maroon occupied the lone defender on the play and Teemu Selanne brought it to his backhand and beat Jonathan Quick for the 2-1 lead. At the time of the goal, Selanne was third on the Ducks in CorsiForRelative and second among forwards at 17.8-percent. He had been playing well and was justly rewarded.

The Kings would get their chances over the rest of the third period but it looked like they wouldn’t get the goal they needed. With seven seconds left on the clock in the game, though, they had their prayers answered. Marian Gaborik would bat a puck out of the air from the left of Jonas Hiller and the puck would go through his five hole to tie the game 2-2, sending it to overtime.

The overtime saw a lot of pressure for the Ducks. Quick had to make a nice save on Devante Smith-Pelly as he was left alone in front with no pressure but couldn’t put it past the netminder. There was another scramble where Emerson Etem was robbed by Quick and Corey Perry was robbed by defenseman Alec Martinez, who was pretending to play goal as Quick was out of the play. In fact, the Ducks held a 7-3 shot advantage in overtime through 12 minutes. Gaborik would redirect a pass from Kopitar, though, with Los Angeles’ fourth overtime shot, which would prove to be the game-winner.

The Kings had a few players player very well, but Doughty was above them all. Doughty finished with 17 shot attempts against when he was on the ice at 5-on-5, two fewer than teammate Matt Greene. Greene played over 13 fewer minutes at 5-on-5 than Doughty.

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