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NHL Playoff Buzzer: Bruins tie series, Hurricanes and Avalanche take leads

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WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 17: Brad Marchand #63 of the Boston Bruins celebrates his game winning goal in overtime against the Washington Capitals in Game Two of the First Round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Capital One Arena on May 17, 2021 in Washington, DC.The Boston Bruins defeated the Washington Capitals 4-3 in overtime. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

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  • Brad Marchand sent the Bruins to a 1-1 series tie heading home.
  • Jordan Staal netted two goals and the Hurricanes handled Nashville 5-2.
  • Colorado’s best players stepped up to stop the Blues 4-1.
  • Three more games on Tuesday’s playoff slate.

Game 2: Bruins 4, Capitals 3 (OT)

It looked like Washington was set to take a 2-0 series lead, and then Taylor Hall happened. The Bruins top deadline acquisition poked a puck past Capitals goalie Craig Anderson with a hair over four minutes left in regulation to force overtime, and then Brad Marchand won it 39 seconds into overtime.

The series shift is drastic; Boston goes from facing down an 0-2 start to the series to momentum, a series tie, and home ice for the next two contests.

Game 1: Hurricanes 5, Predators 2

Jordan Staal scored twice and defenseman Brett Pesce had two assists as the Hurricanes handled Nashville to open the series. They held the Predators to just 14 combined shots in the final two periods.

It was the first multi-goal win in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, in front of 12,000 fans in the highest-attended NHL game of the year.

Game 1: Avalanche 4, Blues 1

Gabriel Landeskog notched a playoff Gordie Howe hat trick as the Avalanche offense broke through in the third period to take a 4-1 win. Nathan MacKinnon scored the go-ahead goal 30 seconds into the third period, and nabbed the empty netter for a two-goal night.

Blues goalie Jordan Binnington made 46 saves to keep St. Louis in it, but it wasn’t enough to hold down the Avs offense.

[NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs 2021 First Round schedule, TV info]

Three Stars for action from Monday in the NHL

1. Jordan Staal, Carolina Hurricanes

The Hurricanes took care of business with their 5-2 win over Nashville in Game 1, and Staal contributed to nearly half the offense. The veteran center scored twice, snapping a six-game scoreless streak.

His first goal was a tiebreaker in the second frame and then he added another later on in the third to make it a two-goal contest, the first two-goal lead anyone has held in the entire postseason to date.

2. Nathan MacKinnon, Colorado Avalanche

The Avalanche star and perennial Hart candidate scored the game winner 30 seconds into the third period, breaking through after the Avalanche had been shut down by the Blues throughout the third period.

He also assisted on Landeskog’s insurance goal later on in the frame. He scored the empty-netter to seal it with 39 seconds left in the contest.

3. Taylor Hall, Boston Bruins

What an effort from the newest Bruins skater. Hall led the game with seven shots, but the one that mattered was the one he used to tie the game with just over four minutes left in the third.

It could have been Brad Marchand in this spot, but despite the overtime goal, Marchand looked rattled early with two second-period penalties. He responded well with the winner.

Hall, though, continues to change the entire Bruins dynamic on the ice. This is the kind of game he was brought to Boston for.



Game 2: Islanders at Penguins 7:30 p.m. ET - NBCSN (livestream)

Game 2: Lightning at Panthers 8 p.m. ET - CNBC (livestream)

Game 2: Wild at Golden Knights 10 p.m. ET - NBCSN (livestream)


Marisa Ingemi is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop her a line at or follow her on Twitter @Marisa_Ingemi.