NHL playoffs roundup: Bruins finish sweep of Habs; Rangers top Caps
MONTREAL ” Former Montreal forward Michael Ryder scored twice and assisted on David Krejci’s goal to help the Boston Bruins complete a four-game sweep of the Canadiens with a 4-1 victory Wednesday night.
Tim Thomas made 26 saves, and Phil Kessel also scored for Boston, which won the Eastern Conference quarterfinal for its first playoff series win in 10 years.
The top-seeded Bruins had lost five straight series ” including losses to Montreal in 2002, 2004 and 2008 ” since beating Carolina in the first round in 1999.
Andrei Kostitsyn gave Montreal a 1-0 lead 39 seconds in and the Canadiens dominated the scoring chances in the opening period, outshooting Boston 16-7.
The Bruins, though, went to the dressing room with a 2-1 lead after Ryder and Krejci scored 1:58 apart late in the period.
Kessel extended the lead to 3-1 when he stepped out of the penalty box and drove the right side before putting a low shot past Carey Price 11:58 into the second for his fourth goal in four games.
Ryder, who scored the winner Monday night in a 4-2 victory, got his second of the game ” his fourth of the series ” at 12:43 when he scored off a Krejci’s cross-ice pass.
Montreal completed its 100th season with eight straight losses, including its last four regular-season games.
NEW YORK ” Henrik Lundqvist made 38 saves, half of them in the second period, and the seventh-seeded New York Rangers put the Washington Capitals on the brink of elimination with a 2-1 victory Wednesday night.
Lundqvist, who posted a 1-0 shutout win in Game 2, was on top of his game all night as the Capitals controlled play from the second period to the end ” outshooting New York 39-21. But it’s the Rangers who hold a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven series.
Paul Mara staked the Rangers to the lead with 6:05 left in the first period, scoring just the second goal against 20-year-old rookie Simeon Varlamov, who has stopped 75 of 78 shots since taking over for Jose Theodore after New York’s 4-3 win in Game 1.
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