Final, 5-3 Bruins: That’ll do it from the Garden. The Bruins sure didn’t make it easy on themselves, but give them credit for coming back when it looked like they were about to fall behind 2-0 in this series.
That was a great game. Unfortunately, we all have to wait an extra day for Game 3. We’ll see you Tuesday night.
Third period, 1:06, 5-3 Bruins: With Carey Price on the bench for the extra skater, Milan Lucic scores from center ice. The Garden breaks into a full-on celebration.
Third period, 3:32, 4-3 Bruins: Unbelievable.
With Patrice Marchand battling in front with Subban, Krug sent a cross-ice feed to Reilly Smith. Price was unable to move right to left, in part because of the mess in front, and Smith buried it into the open net.
Subban might have been a little too preoccupied with Marchand on that one.
Either way, the roof is about to blow off this place. Truly an incredible comeback.
Third period, 4:12, 3-3: Alexei Emelin just plopped down on David Krejci’s head with an elbow after Krejci dived for a puck. Krejci took offense, but the refs didn’t see it. That was a dirty, dangerous play that can lead to a concussion.
Third period, 5:43, 3-3: Tie. Hockey. Game.
The building is truly as loud as it can possibly be, after Patrice Bergeron’s shot richocheted off a Canadien and got past Price. Goal for Bergeron, assist to Bouillon, and we’ve got another tie game here at the Garden.
Third period, 9:04, 3-2 Canadiens: Bang — just like that, it’s a one-goal game.
Brad Marchand made an abrupt stop and spin in the offensive zone and feathered a pass back toward the blue line for Dougie Hamilton. Hamilton adjusted to the top of the slot and let her rip, and he beat Price high to the glove side.
It’s a one-goal game now. Hold onto your hats.
Third period, 9:25, 3-1 Candiens: The Bruins are running out of time. The third line just generated decent zone time, but ultimately they were kept to the outside and were unable to create any real chances. The Canadiens have done a great job of leveling the ice, and really limiting everything the Bruins have wanted to do. It’s been really impressive.
But as the Bruins showed in Game 1, it’s hard to hold them down for a whole game.
Third period, 12:42, 3-1 Canadiens: In positive news for Boston, Shawn Thornton is back on the bench.
Third period, 13:30, 3-1 Canadiens: And the penalty comes back to bite the Bruins.
P.K. Subban strikes again with a bomb from the blue line. It weaved its way through traffic, with Vanek in front to redirect it past Rask, and the Habs have a two-goal lead.
Third period, 14:14, 2-1 Canadiens: Another Boston penalty.
Dougie Hamilton goes to the box for interference. This was a bad call. Hamilton and Gallagher got tied up as Gallagher crashed the net. It’s a bad call in the sense that similar contact has been made throughout the day without calls. It’s really hard to tell what is and what isn’t a penalty today. It also broke up a 2-on-1 Boston rush. It was called very late, which is a good indicator that it probably should not have been called.
Third period, 17:07, 2-1 Canadiens: After an icing on Montreal, Michel Therrien elected to use his timeout to give his players a chance to catch their wind. You don’t often see timeouts called with 17 minutes left in the regular season, but Therrien understands the importance of every shift here.
Third period, 19:38, 2-1 Canadiens: Thornton came out of the box flying and had Subban lined up for a hit, but Subban hit the deck after dumping the puck into the zone, sending Thornton flying into the dasher. It looked like Thornton might have hurt his shoulder in the collision with the boards, as he stayed down on the ice for a bit and needed some help from the trainer.
Third period, 20:00, 2-1 Canadiens: Referees Dave Jackson and Dan O’Rourke were roundly booed when they took the ice before the start of this period, which is to be expected.
The Habs have 10 seconds of power play time left, and after that, the Bruins will get to work on that comeback. I’d say the team that scores next is going to win, but I know better than to think this game is predictable.
Here we go … Bergeron wins the opening draw, and the third period is underway.
End of second period, 2-1 Canadiens: The B’s killed off most of that bench minor penalty, with just 10 seconds remaining. But this building is definitely a bit stunned.
The refs certainly aren’t helping matters, but that’s not why the Bruins trail in this game. Carey Price has been outstanding, and the Canadiens remain committed to blocking shots. They’ve stopped enough chances to make Price’s job easier, and when things break down, Price has been there to make the incredible save. It’s been something to marvel at, really, through seven-plus periods.
The Bruins are going to have to regain their composure, because they lost it a bit at the end of the second period when things started to snowball for them. Sticking with the game plan is likely going to lead to a goal, but that’s awfully difficult if they’re consistently down a man.
Second period, 1:47, 2-1 Canadiens: And now the Bruins have to kill another penalty, after a bench minor is called on Boston. Perhaps Claude was getting too vocal in his protests? If that was the case, he had a point. These refs have been wildly inconsistent all day.
Second period, 1:51, 2-1 Canadiens: And the Habs break through on the power play.
After Zdeno Chara’s backhanded attempt to clear the zone gets kept in by Montreal, the Habs set up their power play and Subban sent a shot toward net. Thomas Vanek, Mr. Bruins Killer, redirected it over Rask’s shoulder, and the Canadiens have their first lead of this game.
Second period, 3:37, 1-1: And now the Habs go on a 4-on-3 power play, after Andrej Meszaros gets called for roughing. It’s a good call, but the refs have their hands all over this one. They’re not doing an excellent job, but what else is new?
Second period, 3:51, 1-1: Either Gionta or Eller sprayed Rask after the goalie covered up the puck, and a major scrum broke out. Nobody really wanted to mess with Kevan Miller, but Lars Eller got tangled up with Torey Krug.
As a result, both Krug and Eller go to the box for roughing and unsportsmanlike conduct, respectively.
This all came after Milan Lucic nearly scored a legitimate goal right after the overturned one. He carried across the goalmouth looking to score on the backhand, but yet again Price stayed with it and never gave up anything, eventually turning away the shot. Price has really been outstanding and is yet again a difference maker.
Second period, 4:36, 1-1 (again): As expected, that one doesn’t count. It clearly went off Lucic’s glove, and he was clearly intending to make a play on the puck with his hand. No goal, tie game again.
Second period, 4:36, 2-1 Bruins (for now): A puck bounced off Milan Lucic’s glove and went into the net. I don’t think that will stand. It’s under review.
It was a really nifty play by Iginla to set up that play though.
Second period, 7:28, 1-1: The Bruins generated some chances on the PP — the best of which was a give-and-go between Bergeron and Soderberg, which Price gloved — but they couldn’t bury any of them.
Each team is now 0-for-3 on the man advantage.
Second period, 9:32, 1-1: Thanks to some wizardry from David Krejci, the Bruins are going on the power play. Lars Eller held him up on a rush, which Krejci created himself.
Second period, 11:22, 1-1: Carey Price just showed great poise to remain in position as Loui Eriksson tried to wait him out. Eriksson held, and held … and held, but Price stayed square and eventually made a nice blocker save.
That holding onto the puck strategy isn’t working for the Bruins. They’d be better served to just fire away.
Second period, 13:12, 1-1: Tuukka Rask stopped a shot off the initial faceoff on the power play, and the penalty killers did the rest from there.
Zdeno Chara actually led a shorthanded rush, showing solid hands in stickhandling around two Habs to gain space in the neutral zone. He teed up a blast from the blue line, but Josh Gorges willingly put himself in front of the slap shot. That’s an insane thing to do.
Second period, 15:59, 1-1: Trouble in Boston, as Kevan Miller goes to the box for roughing. He basically cross-checked Brendan Gallagher in the head in an attempt to clear out the front of the net. Gallagher did retaliate with a slash, but that went uncalled.
Second period, 17:39, 1-1: Excuse me for some internet connectivity issues, but the Habs have tied the game.
Mike Weaver sent a slap shot through a whole mess of traffic in front, after a wild scramble that had Tuukka Rask rolling around on his back in an effort to stand up to the rush. It was the type of sequence that worked against the Bruins for the entirety of Game 1. The Habs — yet again — capitalized on their chance.
End of first period, 1-0 Bruins: And that 1-0 lead remains intact at the end of the first period.
It was certainly a period played at the pace you’d expect — frenzied.
Both Boston and Montreal are 0-for-2 on the power play, with Boston letting 60 seconds of a two-man advantage go by the boards.
Referees Dave Jackson and Dan O’Rourke dished out 16 PIMs and are clearly intent on being a major part of this game. Hooray for that. We’re all here to see the refs.
As for non-referee-related business, the game looks very similar to Game 1. The Bruins are controlling the puck, generating 27 shot attempts compared to Montreal’s 18. And yet again, Montreal is showing a great ability and willingness to block shots. They’ve blocked eight already.
Price looks sharp again, though he isn’t as perfect as he was to start Game 1. Rask hasn’t really been tested, but he’s stopped all six shots the Bruins have needed him to stop.
Andrej Meszaros is playing with an extra jump in his step, looking like a man who not only has had a lot of rest but also wants to hang on to his spot in the lineup. He’s been jumping on pucks in the neutral zone and confidently carrying it across the blue line, and he’s trying to make an impact.
First period, 1:21, 1-0 Bruins: The Bruins killed the penalty, with Rask only needing to make one save. But there will be more penalties called, as P.K. Subban cross-checked Chara in front of the Boston bench. I’m not sure what Chara did to deserve a penalty there.
First period, 3:31, 1-0 Bruins: Dougie Hamilton just opened the door for a Montreal comeback, as he interfered with Max Pacioretty on a 1-on-1 rush up the boards.
First period, 6:58, 1-0 Bruins: The home crowd gets what it wants.
Daniel Paille stood in the slot and took a feed from the corner from Carl Soderberg, and Paille sent a simple wrister toward the left post. It made it just inside that post, and the Bruins lead 1-0 — their first lead of the series.
Claude Julien switched things up on that third line, and it pays off with a first-period goal.
First period, 10:13, 0-0: The Bruins had a lot of zone time, but thanks to some great shot blocking by the Canadiens’ PK, and maybe one or two saves by Price, the B’s get nothing out of their power plays.
First period, 12:42, 0-0: Make that a two-man advantage. Brandon Prust for holding. This building is going bananas. We’ll see if the Bruins can turn that energy into a goal or two.
First period, 13:42, 0-0: “Silhouette” by Thrice is blaring over the PA, which can only mean one thing: The Bruins are heading on a power play.
Dale Weise is in the box for hooking.
First period, 14:01, 0-0: The Bruins kill the penalty, and then Bergeron fed Caron, who was streaking to the net, for a quality scoring chance.
First period, 16:21, 0-0: Jordan Caron makes his presence known by getting a hooking call. Welcome back, Jordan. Habs to the PP.
First period, 16:30, 0-0: Shots are just 1-1, but don’t let that trick you into thinking this one had a slow start.
Shawn Thornton actually just dinged the crossbar with a slap shot from the right faceoff circle. Fast and furious action to start this tone.
First period, 18:49, 0-0: Rene Bourque flat-out tackled Kevan Miller and got away with it. Torey Krug decided to bop Bourque in the face, and the two went off for minors — roughing for Krug, cross-checking for Bourque. Some early 4-on-4 play here at the Garden.
First period, 20:00: This game is underway.
12:27 p.m.: Matt Bartkowski took two penalties in Game 1. Both led to power-play goals, and one was the game-winner in double overtime.
So Matt Bartkowski will not be playing today.
He’ll be replaced by Andrej Meszaros. That’s a relatively significant change. Meszaros played in Games 1 and 2 against Detroit but hasn’t played since.
Jordan Caron is also in the lineup, with Justin Florek taking a seat.
Here are the lines that will start this game:
Brandon Prust-Tomas Plekanec-Brendan Gallagher
Josh Gorges-P.K. Subban
Brad Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-Reilly Smith
Andrej Mesazaros-Johnny Boychuk
As for right now, Terry O’Reilly is the honorary banner captain, and he’s getting this afternoon crowd hyped up and ready to go.
12:25 p.m.: Gary Bettman spoke about many topics, ranging from concussion protocol, to expansion (Seattle and Las Vegas were asked about specifically), to the new playoff format and more.
He was also asked about the racist tweets, and Bettman said the NHL fully supports the statement issued by Cam Neely and the Bruins. He added that NHL condemns any such hateful thoughts, obviously.
11:49 a.m.: Gary Bettman is about to take the podium. I’ll update if he says anything interesting.
11 a.m.: Brad Marchand, Shawn Thornton and Torey Krug just spoke for the Bruins, and much of it was standard pregame stuff. You’re honestly not going to get a ton of stuff out of players when they talk a couple of hours before a game.
But I did find Montreal head coach Michel Therrien’s comments to be noteworthy. He was asked about the racist tweets that caused such a hoopla yesterday. What was interesting is that despite the Canadian media’s insistence on the Bruins’ fan base being racist, Therrien was smart enough to realize that the tweets were made by a handful of ignorant people who are representative of no larger group.
“We’re not here to talk about a few bad people that put comments on the Internet,” Therrien declared, adding that they did not come from real fans.
The coach said the tweets did not affect P.K. Subban, who also recognized that a few ignorant people on Twitter do not represent a fan base.
Therrien also said he has never heard anything from the fans in Boston aside from passion, similar to what he sees out of fans in Montreal.
On a hockey note, Therrien said that Michael Bournival will be inserted into the lineup in place of Travis Moen, and when asked about Thomas Vanek (18:58 time on ice in Game 1), Therrien made it clear that work ethic, attitude and a desire to compete were non-negotiable. He then curbed his remarks by saying he wasn’t speaking about Vanek directly, but considering how small a role the star forward played in Game 1, we can understand why he said what he said. Will the message be received?
10 a.m.: It feels weird to be inside the TD Garden at 10 a.m., but here we are.
The Bruins and Canadiens will hit the ice today at 12:30 p.m., a rather early start for Game 2 of this second-round series.
Despite the early start, I don’t believe it’ll take too long for these two teams to wake up on this Saturday. There’s too much on the line to do anything but come out at full speed today.
I’ll have updates right herein the live blog throughout pregame, and I’m going to hop downstairs to hear what the Bruins have to say this morning. I’ll have any lineup changes noticeable in warmups, as well as live updates and analysis throughout the game. Will we go to period No. 5 today, too?