Both teams got off to solid starts, getting chances early and controlling possession, but both goaltenders were able to fight off early scrums in front of their respective nets to keep it scoreless. With about 5 minutes gone the Canucks amped it up and came very close with Thomas almost out of his net, but the puck was cleared off the line to prevent Vancouver from opening the scoring. After some back and forth in the middle stages of the game, the Canucks were awarded the first power play of the game at 10:24 when Zdeno Chara was boxed for interference. The Bruins looked to have killed off the man advantage with some great shorthanded play, but Alex Burrows was able to collect a slick pass down low and squeeze a shot past Thomas for a 1-0 lead late in the power play at 12:12. The home side continued to press as the period continued, but the Bruin defense began to play better to keep the Canucks from extending their lead. The rest of the period expired without incident and Vancouver took a 1-0 lead into the locker room.
Boston was awarded a power play just 1:03 into the second period when Kevin Bieksa was given the gate for delay of game even though it appeared as though the puck hit the top of the glass before it went into the seats. Vancouver was able to kill off the penalty with relative ease, however and even got two great chances of their own. As the period continued, the Bruins began to slowly get some momentum back, and were finally able to equalize with their first goal of the series when Milan Lucic hammered home a rebound in front at 9:00. Soon afterwards Boston was awarded another power play at 10:26 when Aaron Rome was boxed for holding at 10:26. The anemic Boston power play finally was able to cash in on that man advantage at 11:35 when Mark Recchi tipped a point shot past Luongo for a 2-1 Bruins lead. The home side came back hard after Boston took the lead, and got some great chances, but were robbed twice by Thomas and once by the stick of Michael Ryder. At 19:01 of the period, Aaron Rome was called for another penalty, again interference, but the Bruins were not able to score in the last minute and took a 2-1 lead into the intermission.
On the power play for 59 seconds to open the third period, the Bruins generated some nice chances early but then took a penalty at 51 seconds to give the Canucks a slightly abbreviated power play. Vancouver failed to even get a shot off on their man advantage, and the Bruins used the momentum from their successful kill to amp up the pressure on the Canucks' goal, and it took more nice saves from Luongo to keep Boston only ahead by one. After a while, however, Vancouver picked up their pressure again, and after being robbed by Thomas several times off of rushes and zone time, Daniel Sedin was finally able to convert at 9:27 to equalize. The Canucks kept coming after they had tied it, getting two odd-man rushes in a minute long span that were both stopped by great backchecks. Despite some amazing pressure from Vancouver as the period wore down, the game moved to overtime.
In overtime, Alex Burrows beat Zdeno Chara down the wing and poked a loose puck past Tim Thomas only 11 seconds in to win the game for the Canucks.
Seriously, Alex Burrows. The agitating forward was the hero tonight, scoring two goals including the winner after being conversely not suspended after biting Patrice Bergeron in game one. There will be alot of heat on Gary Bettman and Mike Murphy following their decision to let Burrows off, as it may have changed the tide of the series totally in Vancouver's favor.
Roberto Luongo can play the goaltender position. Louie was great again tonight, making 28 saves, several of them spectacular, in order to help his team on the road to victory. He has been great these playoffs since his shaky middle of the road during the Blackhawks series, but is thisclose to silencing his critics once and for all.
Andrew Ference: whoops. He's had his moments this postseason, and you could make the argument that he scored the goal that turned around Boston's postseason, but tonight, he was very bad. He was caught out of position on both of Burrows' goals and that clearly cost the Bruins dearly. Not a good night for him.
Game three is Monday night in Boston.