The top-seeded Pittsburgh Penguins will try to rebound from a poor showing in the opener of the Eastern Conference finals when they host the Boston Bruins in Monday's Game 2 at CONSOL Energy Center.
The fourth-seeded Bruins posted a 3-0 victory in Game 1 on Saturday to take the early lead in this best-of-seven set. David Krejci scored a pair of goals and Tuukka Rask stopped all 29 shots he faced for his first career playoff shutout.
Boston now will try to take a 2-0 edge before the series shifts to TD Garden for Games 3 and 4 on Wednesday and Friday, respectively.
Nathan Horton added a goal and the primary assist on Krejci's two markers for the Bruins, who produced the franchise's first postseason whitewash on the road since a 4-0 result in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals at Vancouver in 2011.
"This certainly wasn't easy, because they still had a lot of chances; we were just able to keep them off the scoreboard," Rask said.
Tomas Vokoun suffered the loss despite making 27 saves for the Penguins, who rolled into the semifinal round thanks to a five-game decision over the Ottawa Senators.
Pittsburgh, which hadn't been held scoreless in any contest since February of 2012, will try to even the score tonight on home ice, where the Pens are 5-2 in this year's playoffs.
After outshooting Boston by a 12-7 margin in the first period only to see the Bruins take a 1-0 lead into the intermission, the visitors assumed a 2-0 edge just after four minutes elapsed in the third period.
Krejci managed to squeeze off a shot from the right side that deflected into the air off Vokoun's glove, and he outmuscled a Pens defender to poke in his own rebound from atop the crease once the disc settled onto the ice.
"That's just how I play. I don't know. I can't explain it," Krejci said.
Krejci is leading all players with 19 points (7G, 12A) in this postseason and his seven goals ties him for second in the league along with Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby and Pascal Dupuis.
Boston made it a three-goal spread at 7:51 of the second period, when Horton snapped home a Gregory Campbell rebound from a sharp angle on the left wing. Vokoun made the initial pad stop but the puck sped directly to the goal scorer for the easy put back.
Vokoun, who took over for an ineffective Marc-Andre Fleury in the midst of Pittsburgh's first-round series against the New York Islanders, fell to 6-2 this postseason. His goals against average also jumped from 1.85 to 1.98.
"It's just one game," Vokoun said. "It's a best-of-seven series. We're going to regroup."
Crosby was held without a point for just third time in 11 playoff games this spring, but he was able to draw some positives from Game 1.
"We played with a lot of speed and generated a lot. I think we're pretty confident if we play that same way the pucks will go in for us," Crosby admitted. "We hit the post and had some pretty good chances. We had some bounces and unfortunately they didn't go our way."
Boston's victory snapped an eight-game playoff losing skid to Pittsburgh, which dated back to a 4-1 loss in Game 3 of the Wales Conference finals on May 5, 1991. The Penguins won four straight in that series to erase an 0-2 deficit and then swept the Bruins in four straight in 1992, the clubs' last postseason matchup.
The Bruins' win also put the brakes on a five-game skid in the Steel City during the playoffs, dating back to an 8-3 win on April 13, 1980.
Boston is 4-2 on the road in these playoffs.