MONTREAL (AP) — Matt Fraser scored at 1:19 of overtime to give the Boston Bruins a 1-0 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday night, tying the Eastern Conference semifinal series 2-2.

Making his NHL playoff debut after being called up Wednesday from Providence of the American Hockey League, Fraser jumped into a scramble in front of goalie Carey Price and slid the puck under him into the net.

Fraser scored after Johnny Boychuk’s shot from the point took a high hop off the end boards and Price and defenseman Mike Weaver had trouble controlling the bouncing puck.

Game 5 is Saturday night in Boston.

Tuukka Rask made 33 saves for Boston, and Price stopped 34 shots.

The teams played their first scoreless period in regulation time in the series in a tight-checking first marked mainly by icings and missed passes.

Boston’s Carl Soderberg had the best chance in the final minute after Montreal defenseman P.K. Subban’s blind back pass was intercepted, but Price got a piece of it as it went off the crossbar.

Another goal-less period followed as shooters misfired, particularly Montreal’s Max Pacioretty on a setup from Thomas Vanek, and both goalies held their ground. Each team went on the power play once, but even that failed to break the deadlock.

The Canadiens went on attack in the third, peppering the Boston net and outshooting the Bruins 14-7. But the Bruins got a power play and Reilly Smith hit a goal post, only to see Brian Gionta stoned by Rask alone in front of the net at the other end a moment later.

Notes: Fraser played in place of Jordan Caron. Matt Bartkowski stepped in on defense for Andrej Meszaros. … NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr attended

the game.

Wild brace for faster pace

from Blackhawks

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Erik Haula started the rush from the circle in the Minnesota zone early in the third period of a then-scoreless Game 3, leaning forward as he reached the blue line to thread a cross-ice pass to Matt Moulson.

Moulson moved the puck forward to Justin Fontaine, who deftly sent a saucer-like delivery through two Chicago defensemen. Having raced past speedster Patrick Kane, Haula arrived at the crease in perfect timing for the tap-in past goalie Corey Crawford.

Finally on the board, the Wild pulled away for a 4-0 victory over the Blackhawks that night to cut their deficit in the Western Conference semifinal series to 2-1. Game 4 is Friday night, and the Wild have been bracing for more aggression from a Blackhawks team that’s as skilled and potent with the puck as any in the NHL.

“I think that’s when they’re at their best, when they’re going at you, trying to attack, trying to make plays every single time,” Wild defenseman Ryan Suter said.

The Wild have some made-in-Finland remedies for that sure-to-be-fired-up Blackhawks offense.

The centers on their first three lines, Mikko Koivu, Mikael Granlund and Haula, have the kind of defensive-minded games that make them a good fit in their system.

The rookie Haula’s speed in particular has been a big boost since his emergence down the stretch of the regular season. “The one thing that’s consistent for every Finn that I’ve ever worked with is pride,” coach Mike Yeo said, adding: “Part of that winning attitude is every play they take pride in making it happen, whether it’s a blocked shot or a faceoff or shutting somebody down or whatever they can to help their

team win.”

All three of these Finns were drafted and developed by the Wild, but Koivu and Granlund were top-10 picks. Haula, who played at the University of Minnesota, was the seventh-round overachiever who had three stints this season in the AHL before taking advantage of Granlund’s injury at the end of March to prove to the Wild he could provide quality ice time.

In the six games in April prior to the playoffs, Haula had three goals and three assists with a plus-five rating. His plus-14 total for the season smashed the franchise rookie record of plus-five.

“If we see a guy like that who’s a responsible defensive player, we’re not going to say he’s only going to be a third-line checker,” Yeo said.

“We’re going to see if he can continue to keep the things that he needs and the things that we need from him, but see what we can add onto that. Obviously the offensive sparks that he’s provided, that’s a real positive for him going forward.”

Haula had a chance earlier in Game 3 to give the Wild the lead, but his breakaway was thwarted at the last second with Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith in pursuit.

“I just kept thinking in my head that hopefully I get another chance to bury one,” Haula said.

Check and check.

That was hardly surprising to Blackhawks backup Antti Raanta, also from Finland.

Making those plays you can’t see in the big picture,” Raanta said, describing Haula’s contributions beyond the go-ahead goal.

The Wild will have left wing Matt Cooke back on Haula’s line for Game 4, and the struggling Moulson will be out, Yeo said on Thursday, with a lower-body injury.

The Blackhawks were on the verge of a shuffle or two as well, with coach Joel Quenneville seeking more of a scoring threat on each line. He said defenseman Nick Leddy will be back in action for more speed after being a healthy scratch in Game 3 for the first time in his career, but center Andrew Shaw will remain out because of a lower-body injury suffered in Game 1.

The Wild have held the Blackhawks, the second-highest scoring team in the league during the regular season, to an average of only 21 shots on goal over the first three games.

“It’s hard to hit a guy wide and have him go down and beat a couple guys because they’re so defensive and they play so well positionally,” said center Ben Smith.

With the exception of a surge in part of the third period, the Blackhawks were sluggish in Game 3, with the Wild’s defense a major factor. The Blackhawks, though, can certainly still win even if a line or two of theirs stays quiet. All it takes sometimes is one group to get going.

“The fact that you know you’ve got several options is what makes us a good team,” Quenneville said.


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