Boston forward Brad Marchand has had his share of success in the postseason, but nothing as important as the timely goal he knocked in during last night’s opening semifinal against New York.
With the Bruins forced into a second consecutive overtime, Marchand sent the partisan TD Garden crowd home happy when he converted a pass from the previous game’s hero Patrice Bergeron, capping a 3-2 victory over the Rangers.
Marchand’s game-winner from the slot burned New York goalie Henrik Lundqvist, who had stifled Boston shooters the first 15 minutes of the extra period.
“(Bergeron) waited until I could get a little bit of space,” said Marchand after scoring his 13th goal but first in overtime in his 40th career playoff games. “He made a great pass, and I just put it in the open net. It felt great.”
The goal capped Boston’s strong overtime performance that saw the Bruins outshoot the Rangers 16-5. Lundqvist, however, was unable to combat the two-on-one rush of Bergeron and Marchand.
“I thought I made a bad decision,” said Lundqvist, who made 45 saves. “I’ve got to see the guy in the middle. I was too focused on the puck ... Sooner or later when you face a lot of chances like that, you’re going to make a mistake.”
Marchand also assisted on Boston’s game-tying goal scored by Torey Krug less than three minutes into the third period.
Recalled from Providence on Wednesday, Krug proved the Bruins staff made the right decision, giving the 22-year-old his first playoff start.
The defenseman, who posted one assist in his only regular-season game with the Bruins, drilled his tying goal from the top of the left circle. The slapper came off a pass from fellow rookie defender Dougie Hamilton.