The Boston Bruins defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins 1-0 to sweep the National Hockey League Eastern Conference championship series and advance to the Stanley Cup finals.
The Bruins, who last won the Stanley Cup in 2011, will meet the Chicago Blackhawks or Los Angeles Kings in the championship round. The Blackhawks can eliminate the Kings in Game 5 tonight in Chicago.
Adam McQuaid scored his second playoff goal on a 45-foot slap shot that sailed over the glove of Penguins goalie Tomas Vokoun five minutes, one second into the third period at TD Garden in Boston to give the Bruins their fourth straight win in the best-of-seven conference title series.
“I don’t think our mindset, coming into the series, was thinking to want to sweep it,” McQuaid said during a news conference. “We did a really good job of taking one game at a time. That was something we needed to do against this team that, you know, is extremely talented and extremely dangerous.”
Both teams were scoreless in the first two periods.
“We were a little sluggish in the first two periods,” Boston’s Milan Lucic said in a televised interview. “We had to win a period to win the game.”
Tuukka Rask had 26 saves for the Bruins, who are going to the Stanley Cup finals for the 19th time. They have won six championships.
The last time the Penguins were swept was in 1979 by the Bruins.
“I think for the last eight periods of hockey, everything was left out there,” Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said. “Game 3 was as hard fought and competitive for territory and turf as any game I’ve been a part of. This one was much like that.”
Boston held the league’s top scoring team to two goals during the four Eastern Conference title games, including Game 3 that went into double overtime before the Bruins won 2-1.
“We didn’t come up with that goal, either in Game 3 or Game 4,” Bylsma said. “You have to give the Bruins a ton of credit for that and the way they played and battled, as well.”