The Boston Bruins advanced to the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs after eliminating the Detroit Red Wings in Game 5 on Saturday, 4-2. The win marked Boston’s fourth in a row over the Wings. They’ll next battle their bitter rivals, the Montreal Canadiens, for a trip to the Conference Finals.
It appeared as if the Bruins would be in for a long series after the Red Wings won Game 1, 1-0. Boston flicked a switch and they looked every but like the NHL’s best team in dismantling their fellow Atlantic Division foe in typical black-and-gold fashion.
Boston amped up its physicality, locked down Detroit defensively, benefitted from world-class goaltending, worked pucks in deep, and established a relentless forecheck. They essentially outwilled their opponent, draining the life from Detroit, little by little.
Loui Eriksson and Zdeno Chara scored power play goals in Saturday’s win. Boston’s power play showed a great deal of improvement over playoff years prior in the series. Claude Julien‘s group will be difficult to beat moving forward if they continue to strike with the man advantage.
Milan Lucic and Jarome Iginla both scored in the third period to close out the Red Wings. Torey Krug had two assists in the game. Tuukka Rask once again answered the call, turning aside 33 of 35 shots directed toward him.
The Montreal Canadiens swept the Tampa Bay Lightning in their first round series. Boston will host them in another Original Six matchup when second round play commences. It will be the 34th playoff meeting between the two franchises.
“So another Original Six battle that we get to be a part of, and a lot of hatred between the teams, the fans, the cities when it comes to this kind of rivalry. So we expect them to bring their best,” said Lucic on Montreal following the series win over Detroit.
Boston beat Montreal just once in four tries during the regular season.
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