Reilly Smith and Jarome Iginla scored 22 seconds apart to help the Bruins snap a five-year playoff power-play drought against Montreal and beat the Canadiens, 4-2, in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals Saturday night in Boston.
The Bruins lead the best-of-seven series, three games to two, with a chance to eliminate the Canadiens in Montreal on Monday night. Game 7 would be Wednesday night back in Boston.
Carl Soderberg and Loui Eriksson also scored, and Tuukka Rask stopped 29 shots for Boston. He extended his shutout streak to 122 minutes, 6 seconds before Brendan Gallagher scored to make it 3-1 on a power play with 5 minutes, 21 seconds left in the second period.
Montreal pulled goalie Cary Price for most of the last 5 minutes, and defenseman P.K. Subban scored on a six-on-four power play. But the Canadiens could not get any closer. The Bruins had not scored a power-play goal in the playoffs against the Canadiens in 39 tries over 14 playoff games dating to 2009.
Chicago Blackhawks forward Brandon Bollig was suspended for two games Saturday by the NHL for boarding Minnesota defenseman Keith Ballard in Game 4 of the Western Conference semifinal series.
Bollig received a minor penalty for boarding in the second period of Chicago's 4-2 road loss Friday night.
Ballard suffered an upper-body injury on the hit and didn't travel to Chicago for Game 5 on Sunday night. The series is tied at two games apiece.
When the New York Rangers last left Madison Square Garden they were embarrassed, disappointed, and unsure if they would get another chance this season to erase the haunting memories of a playoff meltdown.
Hard work, desperation, and team bonding - all in the face of a personal tragedy - were enough to prevent the Rangers' season from ending Friday night in Pittsburgh against the Penguins.
New York will need two more performances just as good to reach the Eastern Conference finals.
The first one is Sunday night back in the Garden, where two losses in the last week put the Rangers in a three-games-to-one hole.
In their win Friday night, the Rangers showed their desperation from the start. They jumped to a 2-0 lead in the first period when they had 17 shots - two more than their Game 4 total. They took the play to the Penguins, and rallied around teammate Martin St. Louis, who was in the lineup despite the sudden death of his mother on Thursday.
When the Penguins got within 2-1 in the second, the Rangers responded with a pair of goals 50 seconds apart to stretch the lead to three. An empty-netter made it 5-1 and ensured Sunday's game would be necessary.
"It's going to be a very emotional night again for our group, being Mother's Day, and the situation that Marty is going through," Rangers coach Alain Vigneault said.
While the Rangers waited to head home - their return was delayed until Saturday because of fog in New York - St. Louis went back to Montreal. It was his second trip there as he also went home on Thursday after learning of his mother's death when he arrived in Pittsburgh.
- Associated Press