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Bruins decided in overtime – avoiding historic slump

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The Boston Bruins celebrate David Pastrnak’s winning goal in the playoff game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. The goal sent the Bruins to the quarterfinals. Photo: Michael Dwyer, AP / NTB

Of NTB | 05.05.2024 11:04:06

Sport: The Bruins thus avoided becoming the first team to be knocked out of the playoffs twice in a row after leading 3-1 in the best of seven games.

Last year it happened against the Florida Panthers, who will now be the opponent in the quarter-finals.

The Bruins lost the last three times the team played a 7th and deciding game, and it looked like it would happen again when William Nylander whipped in a 1-0 lead for the Maple Leafs in the 3rd period. It happened after Bruins defenseman Branon Carlo lost the puck when he tripped and fell.

Hampus Lindholm equalized when he threaded the puck up to the nearest cross from an acute angle, and in extra time the same man provided the assist for the winning goal.

Lindholm just eased the puck into the zone, but from the mitt it unexpectedly bounced right in front of the goal. Pastrnak was there, outwitted goalkeeper Ilja Samsonov and scored.

Thus, for the seventh time in a row, the Maple Leafs have lost a playoff series against the rival Bruins. The previous victory was way back in 1969.

– The guys handled adversity well and gave us a chance, said Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe.

Goalkeeper Joseph Woll missed Saturday’s game with an injury. Superstar Auston Matthews was back in the lineup after missing the previous two games with illness and had an assist on the leadoff goal, but he was far from the form that gave him 69 goals in the regular season.

– We have become a better team through these matches. “Now the guys know what it takes,” Bruins coach Jim Montgomery said.

(© NTB)

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