TD Garden, Boston, Ma. — Game five of the Blue Jackets vs Bruins series waited until the third period to provide the fireworks. Boston took a 1-0 lead into the final twenty minutes. It wouldn’t be decided until 18:32 of the period when David Pastrnak tapped in a Brad Marchand cross-ice feed giving the Bruins a 4-3 lead.
The Bruins carried play to open the game, as their physical line of Sean Kuraly, Chris Wagner, and Marcus Johansson started the festivities off. They set the tone from the opening puck drop.
The Bruins had the first power play of the game when Cam Atkinson was called for Slashing at 9:03. The struggling power play was unable to solve the Columbus penalty kill. The Bruins returned the favor when Charlie McAvoy was whistled for Slashing at 11:35. The Bruins penalty was equally up to the challenge.
The period ended 0-0 with the Bruins outshooting Columbus 9-8 and carrying play overall.
A David Krejci misfire put the Bruins ahead 1-0 at 1:39 of the second period. Krejci took a Jake DeBrusk pass just below the right circle and had his shot trickled through the legs of Sergei Bobrovsky.
Tuukka Rask had a big save when Atkinson raced in alone. It was a tremendous performance through the first two periods for the veteran goalie.
The Blue Jackets had the periods lone power play when Torrey Krug was called for Holding at 9:52. Again the penalty kill was up to the task. After two periods Columbus had the shots on goal advantage 23-21.
Brad Marchand put the Bruins up 2-0 at 4:51 when he fired home his own rebound. Bobrovsky had made the ridiculous stop on Marchand on the Columbus doorstep but was unable to hold the puck in his glove. The puck fell to Marchand who wristed it past the outstretched Bobrovsky.
After a long review after a scrum on Rask the Blue Jackets came away with a goal. At 10:53 Rask had appeared to stop the puck with his left pad on the post. The call on the ice was no goal. But upon further review, Seth Jones came away with the goal, cutting the lead to 2-1 Boston.
The Bruins answered immediately when David Pastrnak snapped a Marchand pass past Bobrovsky at 11:16.
Ryan Dzingel answered for the Blue Jackets at 12:07 when he roofed a shot top corner on Rask from the bottom of the left circle. Matt Duchene and Davis Savard ere credited with the assists.
Columbus capped off the comeback when Artemi Panarin corralled a rebound to the right of Rask and fed a wide open Dean Kukan in the slot. Kukan’s first postseason goal came at 13:58.
This set the stage for Pastrnak s heroics. Clearing the Bruins zone, Brandon Carlo made a nice pass to Marchand, who again set up his line-mate for the game-winner.
The Blue Jackets still had opportunities with time winding down. With the net empty the Bruins iced the puck setting up a face-off in their defensive zone. Twice Zdeno Chara was unable to clear the puck, and twice Rask bailed him out. The last one was a right pad save on Atkinson right in front of the Boston goal.
Rask finished with 33 saves. Marchand finished with three points on the evening, while Pastrnak had two to power the Bruins to victory in game 5. Bobrovsky had 32 saves of his own, while nine Blue Jackets figured in the scoring.
Afterwards, Columbus coach John Tortorella was in no mood for questions. The coach boldly predicted that his team will be back.
“Things happen for a reason,” said the coach. “I truly believe that. We’ll be back here for Game 7.” When asked what gave him confidence that that would be the case Tortorella answered “We Will. Because we will.”
Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy credited the play of his young players, Pastrnak, Carlo, McAvoy, and Connor Clifton, who assisted on the Marchand goal.
“We need everybody to contribute. Those guys played a lot of minutes,” said Cassidy. “Those young guys were able to rise up to the moment. Big contributors to it.”
The two teams meet again on Monday at 7:00 pm in Columbus at Nationwide Arena.