The Boston Bruins got power-play goals from Marcus Johansson and Patrice Bergeron within 28 seconds of the third period to overcome the Carolina Hurricanes, 5-2, in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference final. Game 2 will be Sunday afternoon in Boston.
Johansson finished with a goal and an assist while Brad Marchand assisted on both third-period goals for Boston. Tuukka Rask finished with 29 saves. Brandon Carlo and Chris Wagner added a pair of unassisted-goals 11 seconds apart in the third period to seal the game.
Marcus Johansson Spurs Bruins Fast Starts
Both teams scored goals within the first four minutes. Steven Kampfer got the Bruins on the board two minutes, 55 seconds into the first period. Sebastian Aho quickly tied the game at one for the Hurricanes 47 seconds later.
The game settled down after that with no goals until the Greg McKegg broke the ties 9:18 into the second period after rushing in on Tuukka Rask. Carolina had been peppering the Boston net with shots before McKegg finally broke the tie.
The opening to the third period played out just like the first as Johansson and Bergeron scored less than three minutes into the period.
Petr Mrazek and Micheal Ferland Return
The Hurricanes got a boost when both Petr Mrazek and Micheal Ferland returned to the lineup. Both have been missed by Carolina. Mrazek has been out since April 28 while Ferland has been out since Game 3 of the first-round series against the Washington Capitals.
The Czech goalie shook off the early goal and made some key saves to keep the game tied. There was some worry that he’d be rusty thanks to his long layoff. However, he kept the Bruins off the scoreboard for good stretches. However, that shaky opening and closing to the third period. He ended up finishing with 23 saves for the Canes.
Ferland provided a secondary assist on McKegg’s goal and got an interference penalty late in the second period. He was back to being a physical force in the Hurricanes’ lineup.
The Bruins gave up a rare power-play goal to Aho early in the first period, but special teams was key for them in the third. Boston’s two extra-man tallies kept up the trend of timely goals. Coming into the game, the Bruins had a power-play conversion rate of 28.6-percent.
Boston is good at closing out games when they have a lead. That’s what they did that in the third period with those late unassisted goals from their role players. This is a sign of a team on a mission. The Bruins are three wins away from getting their first Prince of Wales Trophy since the 2012-13 season.
Carolina will have to shake off those two spells where Boston got quick goals if they want to get a split of the opening two games.
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – MAY 09: Marcus Johansson #90 of the Boston Bruins scores a goal during the third period against the Carolina Hurricanes in Game One of the Eastern Conference Final during the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Garden on May 09, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)