Two goals late in the second period set the momentum in motion for the Carolina Hurricanes Monday night as they opened up their 2022 First Round series against the Boston Bruins with a, 5-1, win in Game 1 at PNC Arena.
Antti Raanta (1-0, 1.00 goals-against average, .972 save percentage in one game played) made 35 saves on 36 shots against in the win for Carolina in his first career start in a Stanley Cup Playoff game.
Boston goaltender, Linus Ullmark (0-1, 4.07 goals-against average, .833 save percentage in one game played), stopped 20 out of 24 shots faced in the loss in his postseason debut.
The Bruins are meeting the Hurricanes for the seventh time in Stanley Cup Playoffs history with Boston holding an all-time series advantage, 5-1.
The two clubs are facing each other for the third time in four years with the B’s having most recently defeated the Canes in the 2020 First Round in five games while the league held its Eastern Conference playoff bubble in Toronto due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic that summer.
Carolina won all three games against Boston in the 2021-22 regular season with 16 goals for and one goal against over the course of the year.
The Bruins were without Jakub Zboril (right ACL) and Jesper Frödén (lower body) on Monday as the two players missed a combined 69 games in the regular season due to injuries.
Jack Studnicka, Marc McLaughlin, Jack Ahcan and Oskar Steen were all reassigned to the Providence Bruins (AHL) prior to Game 1 against Carolina as Providence is set to take on the Bridgeport Islanders in their 2022 Calder Cup Playoffs First Round series.
Kyle Keyser was recalled from Providence to serve as Boston’s third goaltender at practice this postseason.
Bruins head coach, Bruce Cassidy, reunited his lines from the penultimate game in the regular season for Game 1 against Carolina, rendering Mike Reilly, Chris Wagner, Josh Brown, Anton Blidh and Keyser as healthy scratches for the B’s.
Brady Skjei sent an errant puck over the glass and out of play for an automatic delay of game infraction at 3:00 of the first period, but Boston’s power play failed to convert on the skater advantage.
Midway through the opening frame, Jordan Staal’s stick work pushed the puck over the line while pushing Ullmark’s pad through the crease in the process and was deemed incidental goaltender interference.
As a result, the Hurricanes were not penalized and the call on the ice (no goal) stood.
Moments later, Erik Haula cut a rut to the box for holding and presented the Canes with their first power play of the night at 13:53, but Boston’s penalty kill stood tall and made the kill.
Patrice Bergeron presented Carolina with their second skater advantage of the night for tripping Staal at 16:42, but the Hurricanes failed to capitalize on the resulting skater advantage.
Entering the first intermission, the score remained tied, 0-0, despite the Bruins leading in shots on goal, 14-10.
The B’s also held the advantage in blocked shots (6-5), while the Canes led in takeaways (7-4), giveaways (6-5), hits (22-12) and faceoff win percentage (57-43)– reflecting the momentum of the opening frame where Boston got out to a hot start for about 10 minutes before Carolina rocketed to the intermission.
The Hurricanes were 0-for-2 and the Bruins were 0-for-1 on the power play heading into the middle frame.
Almost midway through the second period, Ian Cole tripped Trent Frederic at 8:15, but Boston couldn’t muster a shot past Raanta on the ensuing power play.
In another surge in momentum late in the period, Jaccob Slavin riffled a shot from the point that Seth Jarvis (1) tipped through Ullmark’s five-hole to give Carolina the first goal of the game at 16:28 of the second period.
Slavin (1) and Cole (1) tallied the assists on Jarvis’ first career Stanley Cup Playoff goal and the Hurricanes led, 1-0.
Carolina scored a pair of goals in a span of 2:10 when Nino Niederreiter (1) sent a shot past Ullmark on the glove side from just outside the faceoff circles in the attacking zone.
Tony DeAngelo (1) and Martin Nečas (1) notched the assists as the Hurricanes grabbed a, 2-0, lead at 18:38.
Heading into the second intermission, the Canes led, 2-0, on the scoreboard despite trailing the Bruins, 25-19, in shots on goal.
Boston held an advantage in shots in the middle frame alone, 11-9, while Carolina led in blocked shots (13-10), takeaways (11-6), giveaways (14-9), hits (34-30) and faceoff win% (61-39).
Both teams were 0-for-2 on the power play through 40 minutes of play Monday night at PNC Arena.
Taylor Hall (1) fluttered a catch and release shot past Raanta to cut Carolina’s lead in half at 2:53 of the third period and the Bruins trailed, 2-1, early in the final frame as a result.
Haula (1) and Charlie McAvoy (1) had the assists on Hall’s goal.
Moments later– after Hall rang the post at the other end of the rink– Teuvo Teräväinen (1) scored on a 2-on-1 while Matt Grzelcyk got caught out of position while trying to pinch, leaving Brandon Carlo to defend on his own.
Vincent Trocheck (1) had the only assist on Teräväinen’s goal to give the Hurricanes a, 3-1, lead at 7:02 of the third period.
Midway through the final frame, Brendan Smith interfered with Craig Smith at 10:00, but the B’s failed to convert on the resulting skater advantage.
Late in the period, Trocheck (1) waltzed right into the attacking zone and cut to the net before flipping the puck over Ullmark as the Bruins goaltender tried to make a save with his mask.
Max Domi (1) and Brett Pesce (1) had the assists on Trocheck’s goal and the Hurricanes took a, 4-1, lead at 16:58 of the third period.
Cassidy pulled his goaltender with about 2:54 remaining in the action to rally his skaters with an extra attacker, but Sebastian Aho quickly received a pass from Aho and selflessly setup Andrei Svechnikov (1) for the empty net goal to give Carolina a, 5-1, lead at 17:59.
Aho (1) and Jarvis (1) tallied the assists on Svechnikov’s goal.
A couple minutes later, Frederic exchanged pleasantries with Smith after a brief stoppage and received a roughing minor as well as a ten-minute misconduct at 19:53 of the third period.
At the final horn, the Hurricanes won, 5-1, and took a 1-0 series lead in their 2022 First Round matchup with Boston.
The Bruins exited the ice leading in shots on goal, 36-25, including an, 11-6, advantage in the third period alone.
Boston finished the night leading in blocked shots, 17-16, while Carolina left their own building leading in giveaways (20-10), hits (48-42) and faceoff win% (57-43).
Both teams went 0-for-3 on the power play on Monday.
The Hurricanes take a 1-0 series lead heading into Game 2 at PNC Arena Wednesday night.
Puck drop is set for 7 p.m. ET and viewers outside of the local markets can catch the action on ESPN in the United States, as well as SN360 and TVAS2 in Canada.