The Maple Leafs gave it all they had for the second straight game, and it was enough to keep them alive Friday at TD Garden with a 2-1 win over the Bruins that forced a Game 6 Sunday in Toronto.
After a scoreless first period that was heavily Toronto-dominated, the Maple Leafs got a shorthanded goal from Tyler Bozak in the second period and an even strength tally from Clark MacArthur 1:58 into the seconds. Both Toronto goals came off Bruins turnovers, the first of which came from Andrew Ference on the power play and the other of which came when Nathan Horton didn’t hustle to a pass from Johnny Boychuk in the neutral zone. Zdeno Chara scored on a wrist shot with 8:48 to play, but it wasn’t enough as James Reimer held the fort.
The Bruins caught a break late in the one-goal game when Bozak took a delay of game penalty for flipping the puck over the glass in the defensive zone with 3:48 left, but they were unable to score on the power play.
With the series now 3-2 in Boston’s favor, the teams will head to Toronto and play Game 6 of the series at Air Canada Centre.
WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE BRUINS
- After Rask had to shine in the first to keep it a one-goal game, Reimer came up huge multiple times for the Leafs, with his biggest save occurring shortly before van Riemsdyk’s penalty, when Patrice Bergeron had half the net to shoot at and Reimer getting his right leg on it to keep the game tied. That save went a long way, as the Leafs took the lead shortly after.
- The absence of Wade Redden was felt more than expect. Andrew Ference was on the point on the power play in place of the injured Redden and committed the turnover that led to Bozak’s breakaway goal. That just goes to show you that any loss — even a third-pairing defenseman — can be a big one.
- The Bruins won 12 of 15 faceoffs in the first period, yet the Leafs completely carried the play. The reason the Bruins pride themselves on having good faceoff guys — and the reason the Leafs made such a big stink when they were losing them — is because starting with the puck is an important facet. Despite the Bruins’ big faceoff advantage in the first, they were outshot, 19-8.
- Five games into the series and the Patrice Bergeron line has yet to score a goal. The line’s been active in some games and was on the ice for Johnny Boychuk’s Game 2 goal, but the second line needs to be a source of more offense for Boston. THe trio had their chances Friday, with Seguin and Bergeron finishing with five shots on goal. Brad Marchand, however, had none.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE BRUINS
- David Krejci continued his impressive pace by picking up the primary assist on Chara’s goal. Krejci now has five goals and six assists for 11 points and leads the playoffs in both goals and points.
- Tuukka Rask stood on his head for the B’s and he had to in the first period. Much of the first period was spent in Boston’s zone, with Rask needing to come up with save after save, the biggest of which came Mikhail Grabovski with the B’s shorthanded. Rask stopped 31 of the 33 shots he faced, and Bozak’s goal came on the breakaway.