x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Savard grabs Boston winner

Marc Savard completed an emotional return by scoring the winner as the Boston Bruins beat the Philadelphia Flyers 5-4.

BOSTON // Marc Savard completed an emotional return by scoring the winner as the Boston Bruins beat the Philadelphia Flyers 5-4 in overtime in yesterday's opening game of their Eastern Conference second-round playoff series. Savard, out for almost eight weeks with a concussion, swatted a rolling puck past netminder Brian Boucher 6:08 into overtime. "It's unbelievable," he told reporters after his first game since leaving the ice on a stretcher on March 7. "I didn't think this game would come this quick.

"I had tough stretches for days. I'm just happy to be back with my buddies and to be here in Boston," added Savard, who celebrated wildly after his goal. Game Two will be in Boston on tomorrow. In the Western Conference, the Vancouver Canucks stunned the Chicago Blackhawks at home with five consecutive goals to win their second-round series opener 5-1. Canucks netminder Roberto Luongo made 36 saves, holding the Blackhawks scoreless until the first two minutes of the third period.

The two teams play again tomorrow in Chicago. At Pittsburgh, Philadelphia fought back from a two-goal third period deficit to tie the score on Danny Briere's slap shot with 3:22 left in regulation. In-form Boucher turned away 14 overtime shots by Boston before Savard struck. The Flyers netminder had 41 saves in the game. Boston's Tuukka Rask saw only four shots in the extra period but made some impressive saves and had 32 stops in the game.

The Bruins won despite losing forward Marco Sturm to a leg injury with the game 21 seconds old. He led the team with 22 regular-season goals. "We had to keep going," said Boston centre Patrice Bergeron after recording one goal and an assist. "Obviously everyone had to step up." The Bruins dominated the first period, goals by Steve Begin and Bergeron earning a 2-0 lead. The advantage went to 4-2 in the third on David Krejci's slap shot before Philadelphia fought back on goals by Mike Richards, who also had two assists, and Briere.

Miroslav Satan had Boston's other goal in the second period. Ryan Parent and Chris Pronger put Philadelphia in position for the comeback with goals sandwiched around Satan's score. * Reuters