|(NHL playoffs) Montreal force Game 7, Ducks closer to conference finals
Max Pacioretty scored a goal and had an assist in the second period, and Carey Price made 26 saves as the Montreal Canadiens blanked the Boston Bruins 4-0 on Monday to force Game 7 in their Eastern Conference semifinal series.
The series is level at 3-3 going into Game 7 on Wednesday in Boston.
In the day's other playoff, Devante Smith-Pelly scored two goals 1:23 apart in the second period as the Anaheim Ducks moved to the brink of the Western Conference finals with a 4-3 victory over the Los Angeles Kings in Game 5.
Pacioretty, who had only one assist in the first five games, scored and set up Thomas Vanek's goal in the second period. Lars Eller scored in the first for Montreal and Vanek added his second of the game into an empty net with 3:56 left.
Rookie Nathan Beaulieu, the Canadiens' 2011 first-round draft pick who was given a surprise start by coach Michel Therrien, picked up an assist in his first NHL playoff game and was plus-2.
The Canadiens repeated the scenario of their 2011 first-round series against the Bruins, winning at home to force a Game 7. That year, they lost Game 7 in overtime. The Bruins went on to win the Stanley Cup.
At Anaheim, California, John Gibson made 39 saves in his second career playoff start as the Ducks took a 3-2 lead in the second-round series with their third straight victory.
Nick Bonino and Jakob Silfverberg also scored for the Ducks, who jumped to a three-goal lead in the second period and hung on behind their 20-year-old rookie goalie, earning the first home victory by either team in the series.
Marian Gaborik scored two goals for the Kings, who will face their fifth elimination game of the postseason.
Game 6 is Wednesday at Staples Center.
Gaborik scored his NHL-best seventh and eighth goals of the postseason, including a redirection with 5:48 left to trim Anaheim's lead to one goal.
Los Angeles pressed throughout the final minutes with a playoff-high 42 shots, but couldn't beat Gibson for the equalizer. --AP