Share this article

print logo

Canadiens force seventh game Bruins can't close out Habs

The Montreal Canadiens have little time to savor their latest successful effort at staving off playoff elimination.

They've got another do-or-die game coming right up. And now, so do the Boston Bruins.

Michael Cammalleri and Brian Gionta each scored 5-on-3 goals and Montreal beat the Bruins 2-1 on Tuesday night, forcing a seventh game to decide their first-round series.

"In less than 24 hours we've got to do it all over again and tonight gets forgotten really quickly depending on the result [Wednesday] night," said Cammalleri, who scored in the first and assisted on Gionta's goal in the second.

Game Seven is tonight in Boston, which is bidding to win for just the ninth time in 33 playoff meetings between the longtime rivals.

"It's win or you're done," said Bruins goalie Tim Thomas, who stopped 25 shots. "If we play the same way we did to win the three, we'll win the fourth."

The Canadiens improved to 6-1 in playoff games where they have faced elimination dating to last year's run to the Eastern Conference final.

"It's a lot better coming in here knowing we're going to Boston than coming in here knowing that we're going home," said Montreal's Carey Price, who stopped Rich Peverley's short-handed chance with just over 2 minutes remaining and made 31 saves. "We can't dwell on it, though. We've got to saddle up and do it again [Wednesday]."

The Canadiens had lost three in a row, including the previous two in overtime, after winning the first two games on the road.

Dennis Seidenberg scored for Boston, which played more than half the game without ejected winger Milan Lucic but still outshot Montreal, 32-27.

"Obviously when it's 5-on-3 it's harder to keep the puck out of the net," Thomas said.

The Bruins went 0 for 3 on the power play and have yet to convert a chance in 18 opportunities through the first six games.

"The power play's been struggling and they won the game because of that tonight, because of their power play," center Patrice Bergeron said. "We've got to find a way and bear down."

Lucic was given a boarding major and a game misconduct 4:37 into the second for his hit on Jaroslav Spacek. The Bruins' 30-goal scorer drove the Montreal defenseman's head into the glass on a check from behind directly in front of the off-ice officials.

"I haven't had a chance to really look at it closely; you see quick replays here and there, but it's something I need to see before I'm able to comment on that," Bruins coach Claude Julien said.

The Canadiens got their second lengthy two-man advantage of the game 16 seconds later when Bergeron was penalized after his clearing attempt sailed over the glass.

Gionta, who had a goal disallowed in the first, got his third of the series at 5:48 on the ensuing two-man advantage to restore Montreal's one-goal lead at 2-1.


Decider for Pens, Bolts

PITTSBURGH -- The Pittsburgh Penguins have the edge in playoff experience. Tampa Bay coach Guy Boucher sees it differently, saying that the Lightning have played in more Game Sevens this season.

Two, in fact -- both in this series.

"For us, it's been a Game Seven," Boucher said Tuesday. "We've been playing Game Seven hockey for the past two games, and we're not about to change our attitude."

The Lightning won each of the last two games while facing elimination, coming back from a 3-1 series deficit to tie the best-of-seven first-round series at three games apiece.

Game Seven is tonight in Pittsburgh (8 p.m. Versus), and this time -- for the first time this postseason -- the Penguins will know that a loss means the end of their season.

There are no comments - be the first to comment