We have a series
The Canadiens came within eight minutes of a 2-0 series lead.
Then they collapsed.
Boston scored three goals in less than six minutes, and Carey Price – brilliant to that point – looked shaky.
Credit the Bruins: a character team that never quits.
Back to the Bell Centre for Game 3.
Leading 3-1 11 minutes into the third period, the Canadiens surrendered three goals in 5:32.
Dougie Hamilton began the rally, and Boston got goals from Patrice Bergeron and Reilly Smith.
Milan Lucic's empty-net goal completed the rally.
Canadiens outshot Boston 15-13 and got goals from Mike Weaver and, on a power play, Thomas Vanek to take the lead.
Signs of frustration from the home team, which took a bench minor toward the end of the period.
A Milan Lucic goal was disallowed – in off his hand – and Carey Price made spoectacular stops on Patrice Bergeron and Torrey Krug.
Daniel Paille, alone in the slot, fired a shot that ricocheted off Francis Bouillon's leg to beat Carey Price.
The Canadiens killed off a 5-on-3 shorthanded situation but were inept on their two power plays.
Boston had a 13-6 shot advantage, an accurate reflection of play.
Boston plays many afternoon games in the course of its regular season.
The Canadiens don't.
So the home team might have an advantage in adapting to a 12:30 p.m. start time.
The way Carey Price is playing, however, the Canadiens goaltender could stone the Bs at 4 a.m.
Price has started 10 times at the Sochi Olympics and in this spring's NHL playoffs.
He's 10-0, with a save percentage of .939 and a goals-against average of 1.60.
Yeah, you could say that.
Price made 48 saves in the series opener. His teammates blocked another 30 shots, and Boston missed the net 17 times.
That's a lot of vulcanized rubber, and Game 2 may bring more of the same.
• Interesting stat cited by Patrick V. Hickey in The Gazette: The Canadiens have played 342 minutes, 25 seconds to date in the postseason. They've trailed for 3:34.
• Suggested reading: I'd urge anyone surprised by the stomach-turning racism of some Bruins fans to track down Common Ground, J. Anthony Lucas's epic study of the Boston busing crisis. Also remember the Red Sox were the last major league team to integrate. Pumpsie Green joined the team in 1959 – 12 years after Jackie Robinson made his Brooklyn Dodgers debut.