David Pastrnak netted a hat trick to lead the host Boston Bruins to a 5-2 victory over the New York Islanders on Saturday in the opener of their second-round playoff series.
Game 2 of the best-of-seven East Division series will be Monday, also in Boston.
Charlie McAvoy and Taylor Hall also scored for the Bruins, while goaltender Tuukka Rask made 20 saves.
Anthony Beauvillier and Adam Pelech replied for the Islanders, who received a 35-save performance from goalie Ilya Sorokin.
With the score tied after the second frame, McAvoy scored the game-winning goal at 6:20 of the third period. After the Bruins killed a penalty, McAvoy was set up at the point and blasted a one-timer to make it a 3-2 game.
Pastrnak’s hat-trick tally provided the insurance with 4:10 remaining. The Islanders had all kinds of pressure, but Pastrnak gained the puck on a rush, worked to the slot and ripped a wrist shot inside the far post to send a barrage of hats from the TD Garden crowd.
Hall’s empty-net goal with 85 seconds remaining rounded out the scoring. David Krejci collected three assists.
The Bruins have won five straight playoff games since losing their opener against the Washington Capitals.
Despite the Bruins having the early momentum, Beauvillier’s power-play goal put the Islanders first on the board at the 11:48 mark of the opening frame. Beauvillier deflected Noah Dobson’s point shot home to give him a three-game goal-scoring streak. He’s netted four goals and seven points in his last five games.
Pastrnak responded with a power-play goal of his own with 23.3 seconds remaining in the period. Pastrnak had the puck come to him in the left circle after a rebound and took his time to find the mark.
He then put the hosts ahead in the middle of the second period with a similar goal. Patrice Bergeron’s shot was stopped, but the rebound came to Pastrnak in the left circle, and he quickly wired the shot at 11:08 of the second period for his second career playoff hat trick.
However, Pelech tied the game again 86 seconds later. The Islanders had a dominating shift, and it ended with Pelech ripping a point shot into the top corner for his first goal of the playoffs.
The win may have come at a price, as Bruins forward Craig Smith left the game early in the third period due to a lower-body injury.
–Field Level Media
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