NHL

more stats

NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Wednesday, May 14th (All times Eastern)

Montreal Canadiens (3-3) at Boston Bruins (3-3), 7 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - For the ninth time in the storied history of their rivalry, the Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens will face off in a decisive Game 7, as the clubs battle for a berth in the conference finals Wednesday at TD Garden.

The Original Six foes are deadlocked at 3-3 in the Eastern Conference semifinals and this evening's game in Boston will decide who gets to face the New York Rangers in the third round. The Rangers earned a spot in the East finals after beating Pittsburgh, 2-1, in Game 7 on Tuesday night.

No rivalry in major professional sports has featured as many Game 7 battles as the one between the Bruins and Habs. Montreal is 5-3 in Game 7s against Boston, but the B's claimed the last one with a 4-3 overtime victory at TD Garden on April 27, 2011. The Bruins, of course, went on to win their first Stanley Cup title since 1972 after surviving that opening-round series with Montreal.

This marks the seventh straight season Boston will play a Game 7, setting a new NHL record. The Bruins were tied with Colorado (1998-2003) for that distinction.

All told, Boston is 13-11 in Game 7s but has won four of its last five. The Canadiens are 13-9 all-time in decisive seventh games and had won four straight Game 7s before losing the 2011 clash against Boston.

After losing Games 4 and 5 to fall behind 3-2 in the series, the Canadiens forced tonight's contest by posting a 4-0 home win on Monday. In order to advance to the conference finals for the first time since 2010, Montreal will have to win in Boston for the first time since posting a double-overtime victory in Game 1 of this set.

The Bruins, who are the top seed in the East and the defending conference champions, are 4-2 at TD Garden in this postseason. The club rallied for a 5-3 win in Game 2 and recorded a 4-2 win in Saturday's Game 5.

"Go home, and get the job done," said Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron about tonight's decisive battle. "We have to -- it's about using (the fans) to our advantage in Game 7. That's why you work for the home ice. You've got to go home and be ready."

Carey Price stopped 26 shots for his first shutout of the playoffs in Monday's Game 6 at the Bell Centre. Thomas Vanek scored twice, Max Pacioretty had a goal and an assist, and Lars Eller scored the other goal for the Canadiens.

"At the end, we came out hard," said Vanek. "They played hard too, had some push-backs, but Price played great, as he has for all the series. We found some ways to score tonight."

Montreal's Nathan Beaulieu recorded an assist while making his NHL postseason debut in Game 6. Beaulieu, a 21-year-old defenseman, replaced Douglas Murray in the lineup and made a big impact when he sprung Pacioretty on a breakaway early in the second period. Pacioretty scored on Boston's Tuukka Rask to record his second goal of the playoffs and first since getting the game-winner in Game 4 of an opening-round sweep over Tampa Bay.

"There were no passengers in this room tonight," said Pacioretty. "I got a bounce and waited for my chance. There was a bounce there and it landed on my stick."

Rask gave up all four goals on 28 shots for the Bruins, who were blanked for the second time in these playoffs. Boston also was shut out 1-0 by Detroit in the opener of the conference quarterfinals before winning the next four games to take the series.

"We should have had the momentum in this game," said Rask. "I don't think it carries over from the last game, as long as you regroup after a loss. How we handle it is how we prepare for the next one. We can't forget about what happened tonight. At the end of the day, I thought we played a pretty solid game, but we gave them some gifts."

Boston holds a definite edge in terms of Game 7 experience, as Bruins captain Zdeno Chara leads all players in this series with 10 appearances. Bergeron and fellow Bruins forward Milan Lucic are next with eight Game 7s apiece.

Brian Gionta leads Montreal with six Game 7s and the Habs captain is confident the less experienced Habs can pull off the series upset with a road win on Wednesday.

"We've felt confident all series against these guys," Gionta said. "We know we can bring it to them when there's no tomorrow. There's nothing to be afraid of."

Montreal forward Danny Briere was back on the ice after being a health scratch for Game 5. He played just over 10 minutes in Game 6 and didn't record a shot. Briere, however, has played in four Game 7s and has two goals and three assists in those tilts.

Bergeron and Lucic lead all players in this matchup in Game 7 scoring. They each have four goals and two assists, while Boston's Brad Marchand has two goals and three helpers over five Game 7s.

Price and Rask are each 1-1 in Game 7s. Montreal's netminder has a 1.91 goals against average and .932 save percentage in those outings while Rask has a 3.87 GAA and .855 save percentage.

This is the 34th playoff meeting between these teams, and while Montreal has won 24, Boston has won the past two series, which includes the seven-game battle in 2011.

05/14 10:26:20 ET

Other Stories

Hurricanes

Lightning Hurricanes Hockey 1
Staal, Faulk lead Hurricanes to 4-2 win over Lightning

Eric Staal and Nathan Gerbe got the Carolina Hurricanes off on the right foot Tuesday night, ending their struggles against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Related Stories
  • ACC: Clemson at NC State

    Tonight at 9:00 on WRAL-TV

  • ACC: NC State at Georgia Tech

    Saturday at 12:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • SEC: Arkansas at Florida

    Saturday at 2:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA: Waste Management Phoenix Open

    Saturday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • ACC: Duke at Notre Dame

    Tonight at 7:30 on 620am

  • ACC: NC State vs. Clemson

    Tonight at 9:00 on WRAL-FM

  • SEC: Kentucky at Missouri

    Tomorrow at 9:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • NHL: Hurricanes vs. St. Louis

    Friday at 7:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
CAR 4
TAM 2
7:30pm Tonight
ND
DUKE
 
8:30pm Tonight
SAN
CHA
 
9:00pm Tonight
NCSU
CLEM
 
9:00pm Tonight
MEM
ECU
 
Final
IND 91
TOR 104
Final
DET 95
CLE 103
Final
MIA 102
MIL 109
Final
DAL 90
MEM 109
Final
GSW 111
CHI 113
Final
LAL 92
WAS 98
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
DET
 
7:00pm Tonight
CLE
POR
 
7:30pm Tonight
TOR
SAC
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
BOS
 
8:00pm Tonight
ATL
BRK
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
DAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
NOP
DEN
 
8:00pm Tonight
NYK
OKC
 
8:30pm Tonight
SAN
CHA
 
9:00pm Tonight
UTA
LAC
 
10:30pm Tonight
PHO
WAS
 
Final
AKR 59
BST 47
 
Final
KSU 63
CMICH 53
 
Final
VCU 72
GWU 48
Final
TOL 70
UMO 65
 
Final
MICH 58
NEB 44
Final
BGU 56
NILL 46
 
Final
EMICH 76
OHIO 40
 
Final
VT 70
PITT 67
Final
LAS 53
STJOE 48
Final
TULA 55
TULSA 62
Final
UGA 70
VANDY 62
Final
KYST 59
WVU 65
Final
BUF 77
WMICH 71
 
Final
GEOR 53
XAV 66
Final
EVAN 89
INDST 78
 
Final
ORU 94
TABOR 53
 
Final
OKST 64
BAY 53
9:00pm Tuesday
PROV 0
DEP 0
 
Final
ALA 50
UF 52
9:00pm Tuesday
RUTG 0
MSU 0
 
Final
ARK 69
TENN 64
Final
AUB 61
TEXAM 71
Final
UTST 56
WYO 44
Final
SDST 58
FRES 47
Final
CALST 79
SDCHR 54
 
Final
NEV 62
UNLV 67
Final
BSU 82
COLST 78
7:00pm Tonight
VERM
GTDNS
 
7:00pm Tonight
NAVY
AMER
 
7:00pm Tonight
UMBC
BING
 
7:00pm Tonight
JMU
DEL
 
7:00pm Tonight
RICH
DUQ
 
7:00pm Tonight
UNCW
ELON
 
7:00pm Tonight
USB
HART
 
7:00pm Tonight
WMARY
HOF
 
7:00pm Tonight
COL
LAF
 
7:00pm Tonight
PSU
MINN
 
7:00pm Tonight
MAINE
UNH
 
7:00pm Tonight
DREX
NE
 
7:00pm Tonight
FORD
RIU
 
7:00pm Tonight
SFLA
SMU
 
7:00pm Tonight
MARQ
SHU
 
7:00pm Tonight
LSU
SCAR
 
7:00pm Tonight
UCF
TEMPL
 
7:00pm Tonight
LONG
UNCA
 
7:00pm Tonight
FSU
WAKE
 
7:00pm Tonight
CCAR
WINT
 
7:00pm Tonight
OU
WRST
 
7:30pm Tonight
ND
DUKE
 
7:30pm Tonight
GHND 0
HC 0
 
7:30pm Tonight
CSOU
RAD
 
7:30pm Tonight
OKLA
TTU
 
8:00pm Tonight
BRAD
DRAK
 
8:00pm Tonight
BUCK
LEH
 
8:00pm Tonight
WICHS
LOYC
 
8:00pm Tonight
ILLST
MIZST
 
8:00pm Tonight
PEAY
MORE
 
8:00pm Tonight
SDKST
NEOM
 
8:00pm Tonight
ARST
ORST
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
RICE
 
8:05pm Tonight
SILL
NIOWA
 
9:00pm Tonight
NCSU
CLEM
 
9:00pm Tonight
MEM
ECU
 
9:00pm Tonight
MIAMI
GT
 
9:00pm Tonight
PURD
IND
 
9:00pm Tonight
TCU
KU
 
9:00pm Tonight
BC
LOU
 
9:00pm Tonight
MISS
MSST
 
9:00pm Tonight
CREI
STJ
 
10:00pm Tonight
SJST
AFA
 
10:00pm Tonight
ARZ
OREG
 
11:00pm Tonight
WASH
STAN
 
Final
PHI 4
ARI 3
Final
NYI 4
NYR 1
Final
CLB 4
WAS 3
Final
PIT 5
WIN 3
Final
MON 3
DAL 2
Final
FLA 4
DET 5
Final
CAR 4
TAM 2
Final
NAS 4
COL 3
Final
CAL 4
BUF 1
Final
EDM 1
MIN 2
Final
VAN 0
ANA 4
7:30pm Tonight
NJD
TOR
 
8:00pm Tonight
WAS
PIT
 
10:30pm Tonight
LOS
CHI