NHL Playoffs: Bruins and Hurricanes open Eastern Conference Final in Boston

NHL Playoffs: Bruins and Hurricanes open Eastern Conference Final in Boston

The 2014 Vezina Trophy victor made 39 saves, including 11 against the power play, to anchor Boston's 3-0 win over Columbus to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals for the first time since 2013. The seven-game series already has a rivalry off of it, between media members of the Bruins and Hurricanes.

That was Jackets coach John Tortorella speaking with reporters last night, hours after he had predicted a game six victory.

Carolina Hurricanes Goalie Curtis McElhinney (35) and Carolina Hurricanes Goalie Petr Mrazek (34) celebrate after the Carolina Hurricanes clinch their first playoff birth since 2009 during a game between the New Jersey Devils and the Carolina Hurricanes at the PNC Arena in Raleigh, NC on April 4, 2019.

"We peppered him", Blue Jackets captain Nick Foligno said. "It's amusing when that happens because you know you got the better of them at that point". Appreciate how that ongoing brilliance in net was never more needed than across another listless second period for the Bruins, and how it kept them in the game long enough for a third-period, four-goal explosion they won't soon forget.

As statistically lopsided as the final score ended up, the game was anything but. I don't think you get this far by accident. "I felt 120 percent [Monday], to be honest". Kampfer was playing just his second game of the postseason, replacing the suspended Charlie McAvoy. The Blue Jackets had 1:41 of the power play remaining to start the third period but again couldn't capitalize.

The Bruins doubled the advantage at 8:58 of the third period, as Johansson weaved toward the middle of the ice before wristing a shot that handcuffed Bobrovsky.

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Near the end of the second, Boston's Charlie McAvoy almost took off Josh Anderson's head with a hit, but the officials levelled only a two-minute minor penalty for an illegal check.

"We are halfway to our goal", said forward David Backes, who scored Boston's final goal in the third period.

The Blue Jackets' defeat sends Bobrovsky into free agency. Matt Duchene and Ryan Dzingel, picked up in trades at the deadline, also will be unrestricted free agents. "Next year, who knows what's going to happen, who's going to be in this locker room, so this one stings".

In his first career playoffs, Aho now has five goals and 10 points in 12 games.

But the veteran blue-liner didn't hesitate when Johannson backhanded him the puck, 2:55 into the game as he cut into the zone.

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