Despite missing No. 1 center Patrice Bergeron, the Boston Bruins gutted it out on Thursday night against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Goaltender Tuukka Rask made 31 saves and the Bruins capitalized on some timely scoring chances to escape Toronto with a 3-1 win in Game 4 to take a commanding 3-1 lead in their opening round playoff series.
Torey Krug got the Bruins on the board just 28 seconds into the game with his first goal of the playoffs. David Pastrnak started the play by cycling the puck along the boards to Kevan Miller. He then sent it along to Krug, who snapped it from the top of the faceoff circle and through a Riley Nash screen to make it 1-0 Bruins.
Tomas Plekanec answered 7:15 later when linemate Mitch Marner stuck with the play after being knocked over, making the centering pass from his knees. Plekanec ripped a one-timer from the slot through Rask to make it 1-1.
The Leafs controlled the majority of the action in the second period, but only the B’s could capitalize on a scoring chance. After Adam McQuaid chipped the puck up the boards for a simple breakout attempt, Pastrnak was able to tip it around the pinching Jake Gardiner and get a 2-on-1 with Marchand. Pastrnak made a slick pass back to Marchand, who fired it into the gaping net to give the Bruins a 2-1 lead heading into the third period.
It was early in the third when the Bruins extended their lead. Just 4:17 in, David Krejci caught the Leafs pinching down too low and sparked a 2-on-1 with Jake DeBrusk, who buried the one-timer to make it 3-1 Bruins.
Rask made several big-time saves on the night, including an incredible recovery off his own turnover to stop Patrick Marleau point-blank:
Up Next: The Bruins take a 3-1 series lead into Game 5 at TD Garden on Saturday.