Boston, MA – Gregory Campbell scored the go-ahead and insurance goals, while Tuukka Rask made 28 saves as the Boston Bruins eliminated the New York Rangers with a 3-1 decision in Game 5 of this Eastern Conference semifinal from TD Garden.
Torey Krug added another marker for the Bruins, who reached the conference finals for the second time in the last three years.
Boston will take on the top-seeded Penguins in the Eastern Conference finals, the first time these two clubs meet in the penultimate playoff round since Pittsburgh swept the Bruins in four straight 21 years ago.
"We learned that two years ago, depth comes into play," Campbell said. "The further you go, the better the teams are and the higher the level [of play] is and the more you have to rely on everybody. "Pittsburgh, they're a heck of a team. They're four lines deep too, and they use everybody. We have a lot of respect for them, and we'll use everybody as well."
Dan Girardi's first-period strike was all the offense for the Rangers, who couldn't maintain momentum from Thursday's 4-3 overtime victory which kept them alive in the best-of-seven set.
Henrik Lundqvist stopped 29 shots in New York's season-ending defeat.
"They deserved to win, they were the better team," said Rangers head coach John Tortorella. "I watched our team fight, and though we never lacked effort, they did a better job than we did in all areas."
After multiple close calls against a sharp Lundqvist in the second period, the Bruins did take the lead thanks to a Rangers turnover inside their own zone. Daniel Paille corralled the disc and shot it towards the net, where it was blocked, but Shawn Thornton ended up feeding Campbell for a rising shot from the slot with 6:19 left in the period.
Rangers captain Ryan Callahan was in alone on a break with just over 8 1/2 minutes played in the third, but his backhander sailed high and wide thanks to a deflection off the butt-end of Rask's stick.
"There's no worse feeling than this," Callahan said of the loss which left his team one round short of their 2012 finish. "We had a good team this year. It's frustrating."
Lundqvist then flashed his pad to make a quick stop in close on David Krejci as the clock ticked under four minutes left in regulation, but his teammates couldn't provide a counterpunch.
New York played with an extra attacker after Lundqvist was sent to the bench with 1:15 on the clock, but Campbell's backhander slid inside the left post with 50.4 seconds to play to clinch the contest.
Girardi's point blast through a Brian Boyle screen early in a New York power play gave the visitors a 1-0 lead with 9:21 remaining in the first period.
Krug evened the score with his fourth goal in five games, a power-play marker at 3:48 of the second period. He wound up from the right point and beat Lundqvist to the near post and just under the crossbar, as the Swedish veteran shrugged his shoulder in vain while attempting to deflect the shot.
"He's done an amazing job stepping in and really playing big for us," Bruins forward Brad Marchand said of Krug. "We're all very excited when he touches the puck. He always makes a great play. We're very lucky to have him right now."
Boston posted its first postseason series victory against New York since taking the 1972 Stanley Cup Finals four games to two ... The Rangers took a five-game, first-round series in '73, the last time before this season these Original Six clubs faced off in the playoffs ... The Rangers scratched center Brad Richards for a second straight game ... The Bruins welcomed back defenseman Dennis Seidenberg (lower body) after a five-game absence, replacing struggling rookie blueliner Dougie Hamilton ... Blueshirts forward Derek Dorsett took four penalties totaling 11 minutes, was held without a point and a shot and was a minus-one in just 3:51 of ice time ... Pittsburgh also faced Boston in the 1991 Wales Conference final, dropping the first two games before winning four straight to reach the Stanley Cup Finals against the North Stars ... Boston took a seven-game Eastern final against Tampa Bay in 2011 en route to its last championship.