Best Bruins Playoff Games: Another Game 7 win over Toronto

Scott McLaughlin
April 22, 2020 - 3:07 pm
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We should all be enjoying the madness of the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs right now, but since we're not, we've decided to look back at some great Bruins postseason memories by counting down their top 10 playoff games of the last decade. Today we take a look at our No. 8 choice. If you missed any previous entries, check them out here:

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No. 10: Pastrnak buries Blue Jackets

No. 9: Horton the Hero, Part 1

It wasn’t quite as crazy as the Bruins’ famous Game 7 comeback win over the Maple Leafs in 2013, but the 2018 version of Boston-Toronto Game 7 was still pretty wild.

Thanks to the NHL’s divisional playoff format, the Bruins and Maple Leafs had to meet in the first round despite having the second- and third-best records in the Eastern Conference, respectively. The Bruins opened up a 3-1 lead in the series, but then the Leafs fought off elimination in Game 5 at the Garden before going home and winning Game 6 to force a decisive seventh game.

It quickly became apparent that we were in for a treat in Game 7. The Leafs opened the scoring with a Patrick Marleau power-play goal just 2:05 in, then the Bruins answered with a power-play goal of their own from Jake DeBrusk 2:42 later -- off a nice keep-in from David Krejci and beautiful slap-pass from David Pastrnak.

Marleau scored again a minute and a half after that, but then Danton Heinen scored three minutes later to make it 2-2 less than halfway through the first period. The Bruins took the lead in the final minute of the period when Patrice Bergeron collected a rebound off the end-boards and slipped it past Frederik Andersen.

Momentum swung Toronto’s way in the second period, however, as goals from Travis Dermott and Kasperi Kapanen gave the Leafs a 4-3 lead heading into the third. Toronto leading a Game 7 in Boston? Surely nothing could go wrong.

This game wouldn’t require a miracle three-goal comeback late, though. Instead the Bruins tied it just 1:10 into the third when Torey Krug beat Andersen with a rocket one-timer from the point. 

Then DeBrusk gave the Bruins a 5-4 lead four minutes later with one of the most impressive and memorable goals in recent Bruins postseason history, as he stormed past Jake Gardiner one-on-one to the outside before beating Andersen while taking a hard hit from Gardiner that knocked him to the ice and into the end boards.

Pastrnak added some insurance with 8:21 to go after Brad Marchand won a battle on the forecheck, allowing Patrice Bergeron to dig the puck out and feed Pastrnak in the slot, where Pastrnak then patiently waited out a sliding Gardiner and down-and-out Andersen before finishing. The party was on in the Garden.

A Marchand empty-netter finished off the 7-4 win and sent the Bruins on to the second round. While that series ended up being a disappointing five-game loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Bruins’ Game 7 win over the Leafs -- their second of three in a seven-year span -- is still a fun game worth celebrating and remembering.

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