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Canadiens blank Bruins to force Game 7

05.12.14 at 10:22 pm ET

MONTREAL — The Bruins can only hope that the Canadiens didn’t save anything for Game 7 after the beating handed out by the home team Monday night. The Canadiens trounced the Bruins, 4-0, in Game 6 at Bell Centre to stay alive and force a winner-take-all Game 7. The series will be decided Wednesday at TD Garden.

The B’s gave one to the Canadiens 2:11 into the game when Kevan Miller caught a bad bounce on an attempt to send the puck out from behind the Boston net. The puck bounced off his stick and in front, where Tuukka Rask tried to get it, but Lars Eller put it in to give the Habs a 1-0 lead.

Though the Bruins pushed back hard in the second period, the Habs scored twice in the final five minutes of the period to put the game out of reach for Boston. Max Pacioretty scored his first goal of the series with a partial breakaway goal that came as a result of gaffes from both Zdeno Chara and Tuukka Rask at 15:24 of the second, while Thomas Vanek buried a loose puck in front on a power play at 17:39 to make it 3-0.

The B’s went 0-for-3 on the power play on the night, while the Canadiens were 1-for-3. Though they didn’t score on the power play that followed Milan Lucic‘s trip of P.K. Subban at 3:58 of the third, the timing of the penalty was enough to hurt Boston’s minimal chances of a comeback.

The Bruins nearly got on the board with under 10 minutes to play in the third period on a shot from Zdeno Chara that bounced up and over Carey Price, but David Desharnais fell on it just before it crossed the line. The play was reviewed, with the no goal call being confirmed. Price’s shutout was his first this series.

Desharnais would later assist Vanek’s second goal of the game as Vanek buried an empty netter to seal the victory for Montreal.

The Bruins are no strangers to results like Monday’s, as they also failed to close out the Habs in Game 6 in 2011 after taking a 3-2 series lead; that year, Boston bounced back in Game 7 en route to a Stanley Cup. Whether they advance to the conference finals this year remains to be seen.


— That’s bad on both Chara and Rask on Pacioretty’s goal. Chara needed to be stronger on Pacioretty than he was, while Rask’s uncertainty played a big role as well. Rask initially skated out for the puck, but by the time he had changed his mind and began to retreat, Pacioretty was nearly at the puck and whacked it five-hole.

— The Bruins hit another post on a good chance about eight minutes into the first period when Loui Eriksson fired a shot over Price’s glove and off the cross bar. The post count for the Bruins this series is in the double digits at this point.

David Krejcis offensive game was improved from some of the duds he had turned in since Game 1, but he lost the faceoff on the penalty kill that led to the Andrei Markov point shot that created the Vanek goal. Krejci was also guilty of overpassing in the first two periods. Krejci still has just one point — an assist on a Milan Lucic empty netter in Game 2 — this series.

— In general, it wasn’t the best night for Boston’s young D. In addition to Miller’s play that led to Eller’s goal, Torey Krug struggled in his own zone and both Matt Bartkowski and Dougie Hamilton had giveaways that could have been costlier than they ended up being. Claude Julien shook up his bottom two pairings midway through the first period, playing Krug with Johnny Boychuk, while Bartkowski played with his former AHL partner in Miller. The pairings went back to normal for the second period.


— The second period was played at a feverish pace, with the Bruins getting a ton of offensive zone time leading up to Pacioretty’s goal. The Bruins got plenty of chances from their first and third lines, but fell victim to over-passing at points. About midway through the period, Carl Sodeberg got the puck at the hashmarks of the left circle off a slap pass from the point, but rather than shooting tried to send it across — through three Canadiens in front — to Matt Fraser. That attempt, like so many others, was broken up.

— Despite Rask misplaying the Pacioretty breakaway, he did keep the game close when it was 1-0 in the first period. Amidst a really good shift from Desharnais’ line, Rask came up with a big stick save on Brendan Gallagher at 6:55 of the first.

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