Charlie Coyle tied it in the last five minutes of regulation and scored again with 5:15 gone in overtime on Thursday night to lead the Boston Bruins to a 3-2 triumph over the Columbus Blue Jackets in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series.
Tuukka Rask stopped 20 shots for Boston, which took a 1-0 lead on Noel Acciari’s short-handed goal in the first time frame, however then fell behind in the third after Riley Nash and Pierre-Luc Dubois scored in a span of 13 seconds.
Coyle tied it when he one-timed a backhanded centering pass from Marcus Johansson into the net with 4:35 left to force overtime. He finished it in the additional period by redirecting a shot from Johansson into the net.
Sergei Bobrovsky made 34 saves for the Blue Jackets, who cleared the Presidents Trophy-winning Tampa Bay Lightning in the first round.
Game 2 is Saturday night in Boston before the best-of-seven series moves to Columbus for Games 3 and 4.
The Blue Jackets were the last group to qualify for the NHL playoffs, at that point they knocked out the Lightning in four games for their first-since forever playoff series triumph. While Columbus waited over seven days for a rival, Boston went tangled with Toronto for seven games before at long last advancing on Tuesday night.
In any case, the Bruins didn’t appear tired, outshooting Columbus 12-1 right off the bat in the game and scoring short-handed midway through the first after Coyle was sent off for hooking. Acciari carried the puck into the zone with Joakim Nordstrom waiting for the centering pass, yet Acciari snapped off a wrist shot that beat Bobrovsky on the stick side.
It remained 1-0 until Nash constrained a turnover at the blue line and after that deflected a shot from Seth Jones past Rask to tie the score with 12:21 left in regulation. The Blue Jackets were directly back at it after the faceoff, bringing the puck the length of the ice from behind their very own net before Artemi Panarin’s slap shot deflected off the back of Dubois’ leg and into the net.