BOSTON -- Nathan Horton scored the game's only goal with 7:33 to play in the third period as the Boston Bruins advanced to the Stanley Cup Finals with a 1-0 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference championships Friday night at TD Garden.
Horton went hard to the net and finished a perfect David Krejci pass from the low left circle area. He finished with a game-high six shots on goal, and the game-winning goal was his third of the playoffs.
The teams were in a scoreless stalemate most of the way thanks to Tampa Bay goalie Dwayne Roloson's multiple big saves on the evening. Roloson -- who is now 7-1 in his career in Game 7s -- made 37 saves in all.
His biggest stop came when Milan Lucic took a Krejci pass and came in on a wide-open breakaway. Lucic shot the puck into Roloson's pads with just under five minutes left in the first period.
The Bruins got good scoring opportunities late in the second period as well. With just over two minutes left, Roloson saved a Mark Recchi shot and then made another stop when Recchi got his own rebound.
Tim Thomas shut out Tampa Bay's skilled attack with 24 saves.
The Bruins will play the Vancouver Canucks for the Stanley Cup, starting Wednesday. This will be the B's first trip to the Cup Finals since 1990.
Danny Picard is onTwitter at http:twitter.comDannyPicard.
Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while amazed, and alarmed, at any politician that would ever duck a town hall-style meeting with their constituents.
*Patrick Eaves had a close encounter of the hairy kind with the mighty Chewbacca during a recent visit to Disney. Let’s just say Eaves, Brent Burns and Chewie could all be from the same family tree.
*Good, long read on junior hockey scoring star Alex Debrincat, who Bruins fans will remember that Boston passed over to draft Trent Frederic at the end of the first round last summer. He’s scoring at the kind of levels that say he might be something special at the next level. Just saying.
*Wayne Gretzky jumps on the Florida Panthers telecast to chat about Jaromir Jagr, and jokes about what he’ll do if Jagr ever gets close to his NHL all-time scoring title.
*Pierre Lebrun has a list of NHL defensemen that are in demand ahead of the trade deadline, and it’s a fairly underwhelming list aside from Kevin Shattenkirk.
*If you’re looking for some good Blackhawks talk then you should check out the Blackhawks Talk podcast over at CSN Chicago.
*FOH (Friend of Haggs) Bob McKenzie dropped into the NBCSN studios again this past week to chat about the NHL tweaking the bye weeks moving forward after watching them play out this season.
*People getting concerned about turning budding personal NHL rivalries into another “Ovechkin vs. Crosby” is perhaps the dumbest NHL hot take I’ve ever heard. The Ovechkin/Crosby rivalry was perfectly good and anything to draw attention to the NHL and its players is also good. This is the kind of thing said by somebody that I’m sure gets more super-excited by a bar graph showing a player’s effectiveness rather than watching what they’re actually doing on the ice.
*For something completely different: A really interesting look from a random date that Carrie Fisher took to the 1978 Oscars while palling around with the young, new stars of Hollywood.