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Recap: Bruins force a Game 7 with 5-2 win over Hurricanes

It’s a one-game series now!

Carolina Hurricanes v Boston Bruins - Game Six Photo by Rich Gagnon/Getty Images

The Boston Bruins staved off elimination yesterday and forced a Game 7 against the Carolina Hurricanes in a 5-2 win in Game 6 at the TD Garden.

Secondary scoring played a huge factor in the win, as Bruce Cassidy shuffled his forwards’ group back to what he felt worked during the regular season.

Brad Marchand netted a goal, but the Bruins also saw scoring from Charlie Coyle and Erik Haula - who registered his first of the series. The fourth line also contributed on two goals with Curtis Lazar’s empty-netter and assists on Derek Forbort’s tally.

It was another successful night for special teams, capitalizing on the power play and killing off five of six penalties.

Jeremy Swayman made 23 saves in the win for his third postseason victory.

Here are the highlights!

First period:

Scoreless

Second period:

The Bruins opened the scoring 46 seconds into the second period.

Connor Clifton hit Marchand with a forwarding pass at the far blue line where inside the right-wing circle, he lifted a wrist shot over Antti Raanta’s glove shoulder. 1-0 Bruins.

The Bruins extended their lead at 18:04 of the second period on the power play.

Coyle found the loose puck from David Pastrnak’s blast to put a quick shot past Raanta’s glove out front. 2-0 Bruins.

Third period:

The Hurricanes bounced back at 3:24 of the second period.

Seth Jarvis found Andrei Svechnikov low inside the left-wing circle where he beat Swayman’s blocker. 2-1 game.

The Bruins regained a two-goal lead at 7:08 of the third period.

In the slot, Haula got his stick just enough on Charlie McAvoy’s shot out front to redirect it past Raanta. 3-1 Bruins.

The Bruins cushioned their lead at 10:43 of the third period.

From the blue line, Forbort sent a wrist shot on net with traffic out front that blasted past Raanta’s glove. 4-1 Bruins.

The Bruins added an empty-net goal from Lazar in the neutral zone at 15:43 of the third period. 5-1 Bruins.

The Hurricanes scored on the power play at 17:30 of the third period.

Martin Necas fed a pass to Svechnikov inside the right-wing circle for a one-timer past Swayman - his second goal of the night. Final score: 5-2 Bruins.

Game notes:

  • Special units continued to play an important role in the Bruins’ wins this series. The Bruins’ penalty kill, yet again, made a huge difference tonight. They successfully killed off four penalties in about a ten-minute span in the second period. Their 5-on-3 kill was a momentum swing. Despite being shorthanded most of the period, the PK showed bursts of offense. On the other side, the power play capitalized on their only advantage of the second frame and finished 1 for 3 on the night.
  • The Hurricanes had a better power play though, and challenged the Bruins’ PK units. The ‘Canes hit the crossbar twice during one advantage and were able to find shooting lanes easier on their early power plays.
  • Secondary scoring finally broke through for the B’s. The fourth line had a solid game and were rewarded with a goal from Lazar and the assists and set-up on Forbort’s goal. That line kept pucks in deep and was able to sustain some valuable offensive-zone coverage.
  • Hampus Lindholm returned to the lineup for the first time since Game 2 and his presence changed the game early on. After a turnover, he broke up a 2-on-1 with Sebastian Aho and Seth Jarvis. Moments later, McAvoy delivered a big hit on Aho after Lindholm’s initial reaction to the play.
  • The Bruins’ defense was actively engaged in that secondary scoring. Clifton sent the heads up pass to Marchand to open the scoring. Throughout the game, the defense pinched down and put shots on net. McAvoy had a few chances by circling low and heading to the net and had a nice sequence with DeBrusk early on.
  • Cassidy discussed postgame the importance of his team’s response after the Hurricanes’ made it a 2-1 game minutes into the third period. It’s probably the biggest takeaway of the game with what it could mean for the Bruins in Game 7.
  • After Svechnikov netted Carolina’s first goal, the B’s top line dominated the offensive zone. Their strong shift was followed by a solid shift from Haula, Pastrnak and Taylor Hall. The second line’s net-front presence gave the Bruins the two-goal lead and showed they could manage the puck the right way to score the next goal and not allow the Hurricanes the chance to get some life back.
  • While the Bruins have the slight edge heading into Game 7, they haven’t been able to win a road game this series. Secondary scoring has shown up to the party. Swayman kept composure as the Hurricanes pressed on the PK and made timely saves. The Bruins responded at the right times tonight. Now, the hope is those three things carry over as the series shifts for one last time to Raleigh on Saturday May 14.