NHL PLAYOFFS: Bruins win opener vs. Leafs
Nathan Horton scored the go-ahead goal late in the first period and the Boston Bruins used a revived offense to beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-1 in their playoff opener Wednesday night.
The Bruins scored more than three goals for the first time in 10 games.
They closed the regular season on a 2-7 skid that dropped them to the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference.
That set up a first-round matchup with fifth-seeded Toronto, the first time the teams have met in the postseason since 1974. The Maple Leafs, who are in the playoffs for the first time since 2004, lost four of their last six regular-season games.
Wade Redden also scored in the first period for Boston, and David Krejci and Johnny Boychuk added goals in the second.
James van Riemsdyk had given Toronto a 1-0 lead with a power play just 1:54 into the game.
Game 2 is scheduled for Saturday night in Boston, where the Bruins have won six straight against the Maple Leafs.
Horton gave the Bruins a 2-1 at 19:48 of the first period.
Redden, obtained from St. Louis on April 3, took a shot from the top of the right circle. Horton, sidelined the previous five games with an upper body injury, lifted his stick and deflected the puck past goalie James Reimer.
After video review, it was determined that his stick stayed below the crossbar.
SHARKS 3, CANUCKS 1: Dan Boyle and Patrick Marleau scored in the third period for San Jose, which rallied to beat Vancouver in the first-round Western Conference series opener.
Boyle and Logan Couture both had a goal and an assist, and Marleau pushed San Jose’s lead to 3-1. Antti Niemi made 28 saves for the Sharks, who were outshot 30-28.
Kevin Bieksa scored for the Canucks before a disappointed white-towel-waving sellout crowd. The loss spoiled a strong effort from goalie Roberto Luongo, who earned the start after Cory Schneider didn’t recover in time from an undisclosed injury.
The Canucks were the first home team to lose in the first six games of this year’s playoffs.