Bruins beat Canadiens, Ducks square with Kings
BOSTON (AP) — Boston scored two power-play goals in just 32 seconds en route to a 4-2 win over Montreal on Saturday which gave the Bruins a 3-2 lead in their second-round NHL playoff series.
On the other side of the country, Anaheim beat neighbor Los Angeles 2-0 to leave their series locked at 2-2.
The Bruins lead the best-of-seven series 3-2, with a chance to eliminate the Canadiens in Montreal on Monday night. Game 7 would be Wednesday night back in Boston.
Carl Soderberg gave Boston the lead with in the first period, and then the hosts broke the game wide open early in the second.
Boston had not scored a power-play goal in the playoffs against the Canadiens in 39 tries over 14 games dating to 2009 but they did so twice in rapid succession.
The Bruins had not scored a power-play goal in the playoffs against the Canadiens in 39 tries over 14 games dating to 2009.
With Montreal’s Tomas Plekanec off the ice for interfering with the goaltender, Reilly Smith pounced just 64 seconds into the second period when he tipped Dougie Hamilton’s shot past Carey Price to make it 2-0.
Sixteen seconds later, Plekanec was sent off again — this time for high-sticking. It only took 6 seconds into the power play for the Bruins to make it 3-0 as Jarome Iginla received a backhand crossing pass from Torey Krug and slapped a shot past Price.
Plekanec set up Brendan Gallagher to cut the deficit to two goals with 5:21 left in the second period, but Loui Eriksson snapped in the rebound of Matt Fraser’s shot with just under 6 minutes left in the game to make it 4-1.
Montreal pulled Price for most of the last 5 minutes, and P.K. Subban scored on a 6-on-4 power play, but the Canadiens could not get any closer.
Meanwhile, Anaheim goaltender John Gibson made 28 saves in his dynamic NHL playoff debut, shutting out Los Angeles.
Anaheim started its third goalie in three games with the dramatic entrance of Gibson, the 20-year-old American widely considered the best goaltending prospect in hockey.
Gibson, who made his NHL debut late in the regular season, got the nod from coach Bruce Boudreau in place of veteran Jonas Hiller, who started the first two games against Los Angeles and finished Game 3 after Frederik Andersen injured his right leg.
The youngster coolly backstopped the Ducks through the final 40 minutes, which were largely dominated by the Kings, who pushed in vain for a goal to get back in the contest.
Both Anaheim goals came late in the first period.
Devante Smith-Pelly, who replaced injured Matt Beleskey on Anaheim’s top line, pushed past Drew Doughty into the Kings’ zone and converted a pass from Corey Perry.
Ducks captain Ryan scored on a power play 2:43 later on his 29th birthday. He threw the puck into the crease from behind the net, and it banked off the Kings and into the net.
The Kings took control of the second period but had no goals to show for it. Getzlaf even saved a goal early in the second period, blocking an open net.
The Ducks played more than 25 minutes without a shot but Los Angeles could not capitalize on its dominance, with Gibson making several big saves in the final minutes.
All four games in the series have been won by the visiting team, which bodes well for the Kings on Monday as they make the 50-kilometer trip down the !-5 freeway to Anaheim.