Pittsburgh, PA – Brad Marchand posted two goals as the Boston Bruins thumped the Pittsburgh Penguins, 6-1, in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals at CONSOL Energy Center.
Coming off a 3-0 whitewash of Pittsburgh in Game 1, Boston scored the first three goals of this game and never looked back in taking a 2-0 lead in this best-of-seven series.
Nathan Horton, Patrice Bergeron and Johnny Boychuk each posted a goal and an assist while David Krejci added a goal for the Bruins, who got 26 saves from Tuukka Rask.
"We had all of our guys making some great plays out there tonight," said Boston head coach Claude Julien. "Tuukka has been in the zone for a while and he's got a lot of confidence right now. That puck looks huge to him."
The Bruins can take a stranglehold in this series as it switches back to Boston for Game 3 on Wednesday night.
Brandon Sutter had the lone goal of the night for the Penguins, who lost consecutive home games for the first time since dropping their first two home tilts of the season.
Tomas Vokoun, who made his ninth straight start in goal for Pittsburgh, was pulled less than 15 minutes in after giving up three goals on 12 shots. Marc- Andre Fleury, who was replaced by Vokoun in the quarterfinals and playing for the first time since May 7, gave up three goals on 17 shots in relief.
"We're going to Boston and we have to win Game 3," said Pittsburgh head coach Dan Bylsma. "This team has won a lot of hockey games and it's a good team. We certainly didn't play anywhere near what we're capable of and that's got to be our focus."
It took just 28 seconds for the Bruins to go on top, as Pens captain Sidney Crosby tried to whack a bouncing puck at the right point and missed it shortly after the opening faceoff. The puck was picked up by Marchand in the neutral zone and he went in on a clear break, snapping the puck into the left corner for a 1-0 lead.
Shortly after an elbowing call on Pittsburgh's Brooks Orpik expired, Boston took a 2-0 lead. The Penguins' Kris Letang had the puck behind his net and tried to clear it out through the middle, but Torey Krug kept it in for the Bruins and threw a shot on net that saw Horton chip in the rebound at 14:37 of the first.
Just under two minutes later, the Bruins chased Vokoun from the net when Krejci finished off a nice play with a wrister into the twine for his eighth goal of the playoffs.
The move to Fleury seemed to spark life into Pittsburgh, and the team cut its deficit to two when Sutter wristed a shot into the left corner of the net on a rush with 33.7 seconds to go in the period.
Boston, though, had an answer 25 seconds later to take a 4-1 lead into the break.
Bergeron brought the puck in the right wing and passed it over to the left for Marchand, whose heavy wrister from the top of the left circle beat Fleury to the glove side with just 8.1 ticks showing.
Marchand took a tripping minor at 11:54 of the second, and Pittsburgh had a good chance to score when Craig Adams got a wrister on net and Joe Vitale was in front for the rebound. However, Rask stood tall and finished the frame with seven saves.
Boston put the game away just 27 seconds into the third. Former Penguin Jaromir Jagr fired a backhand pass from the right circle to the left, where Bergeron was wide open for an easy slam and his fourth goal of the playoffs.
Rask made 14 saves in the final 20 minutes, while Boychuk scored with 1:24 to play to put the emphasis on the rout.
Jagr posted two assists in the game ... Neither side scored on the power play, as Pittsburgh went 0-for-2 and Boston was 0-for-1 ... Krejci leads all skaters in the playoffs with 20 points (8g, 12a), while Horton is second with 17 points (7g, 10a) ... Boston improved to 5-2 on the road in the playoffs ... Boston and Pittsburgh have split four all-time playoff series, with the last meeting a sweep by Pittsburgh in the 1992 Wales Conference Final.