Boston Bruins

Boston Bruins

Boston Bruins

SUNRISE, FLORIDA - MAY 08: Aleksander Barkov #16 of the Florida Panthers high fives teammates after scoring a goal during the second period against the Boston Bruins in Game Two of the Second Round of the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Amerant Bank Arena on May 08, 2024 in Sunrise, Florida. (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

The Bruins and Florida Panthers are heading back to Boston all tied up.

After the B’s took an early 1-0 lead, the Panthers switched up their forward lines and took control of the game, ultimately pouring it on for a 6-1 victory at Amerant Bank Arena. Despite both games resulting in blowout wins, the series comes out at 1-1 as it shifts back to Boston for Friday’s Game 3.

Bruins goaltender Jeremy Swayman allowed four goals on 23 shots and was ultimately chased from the game in favor of Linus Ullmark. However, the Bruins’ biggest issue was their struggles to contain the Panthers’ forecheck in the defensive end.

Instead of playing another scoreless first period, the Bruins got the scoring started relatively early. Charlie Coyle delivered an outstanding two-way effort on the play, first disrupting Panthers defenseman Brandon Montour on the breakout to force a turnover. Then, Brad Marchand and Pavel Zacha played a little Tic-Tac-Toe, with Coyle finishing a heads-up feed from Zacha across the crease to make it 1-0 Bruins.

  • Bruins captain Brad Marchand also joined the highlight reel in the first period, but not with offense. Instead, he toppled the Panthers’ Matthew Tkachuk with a thunderous body check as Tkachuk carried the puck deep into the Bruins’ zone.

  • The B’s very nearly had a 2-0 lead late in the period, but rookie forward John Beecher couldn’t angle the puck well enough into what was a wide open net off a 2-on-1 rush.

  • Early in the second period, the Panthers’ Steven Lorentz grabbed the equalizer. Left all alone in front of Swayman, Montour took advantage with the feed down low and Lorentz tipped it in to tie the game 1-1.

  • Later in the second, Florida took its first lead of the game. Panthers captain Aleksander Barkov took advantage of Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy, who had lost his stick, and finished around Swayman at the doorstep to give his team a 2-1 lead.

  • Just when it appeared the Bruins’ middle 20 minutes couldn’t get worse, it did. Panthers defenseman Gustav Forsling made it 3-1 Panthers with a bomb from the point, that went in with only two seconds left in the period. Swayman appeared to be screened by McAvoy on the play.

  • In the third period, the Panthers made it 4-1 after the Bruins appeared to think there would be an icing call. Swayman got spun around as the Panthers’ Eetu Luostarinen tapped it in on the back side.

  • Barkov grabbed his second goal of the game, this time from the slot, for the Panthers’ first power play goal of the game, making it 5-1.

  • Tempers started to flare at this point. And it didn’t get any better after Montour scored the Panthers’ sixth goal, a shorthanded tally. Marchand appeared to take exception to Montour’s antics after the goal.

  • The game reached peak chaos when the Bruins’ David Pastrnak and Tkachuk agreed to drop the gloves and fight. Prior to this, the Bruins’ Pat Maroon had been handed a game misconduct.

    Game 3 between the Bruins and Panthers takes place Friday night at TD Garden, with a start time of 7 p.m. ET. It’ll be interesting to see if the Bruins make any lineup changes after a rough effort in Game 2.

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