Three takeaways as Bruins force Game 6 to keep season alive

Three takeaways as Bruins force Game 6 to keep season alive

The Boston Bruins and Florida Panthers are headed back to Boston for Game 6 of their second-round playoff series thanks to the Bruins’ 2-1 win on Tuesday night to avoid elimination.

Here are three key takeaways from the Bruins’ big victory.

This time, the controversial goalie interference challenge went the Bruins’ way

The Panthers’ Game 4 win swung in the third period on a controversial Sam Bennett goal that was upheld after Boston challenged for goalie interference.

It not only looked like Bennett was guilty of goalie interference by cross-checking Charlie Coyle into Bruins goalie Jeremy Swayman, but he also could have easily been called for a cross-check.

The goal stood, the Panthers got a power play after the failed challenge and struck for the game-winning goal just a few minutes later.

On Tuesday, that controversial call went the Bruins’ way.

Charlie McAvoy broke the 1-1 tie in the second period when he beat Sergei Bobrovsky for his first goal of the playoffs. The Panthers challenged, however, hoping to get the play overturned for some contact on Bobrovsky in front of the net.

The league decided no interference occurred, and the goal stood.

The Bruins needed a big game from McAvoy

McAvoy is one of the Bruins’ best players and their top overall defenseman. But he has not played it like so far in this postseason, and it has been one of the sneaky concerns for the team.

That changed in a big way on Tuesday as he was not only on the ice for both Boston goals, but also scored the game-winner.

The Bruins also had a decisive edge in scoring chances during 5-on-5 play when he was on the ice. That is the sort of impact the Bruins need from their top defender.

Boston turned the tables on Florida

There is very little question that Florida had been the better team through the first four games of the series entering play on Tuesday, and there was nothing fluky about their 3-1 series lead.

They were controlling the pace of games, limiting the Bruins to some of their lowest shot totals of the season and completely rendering their offense useless.

The Bruins were able to fight through that on Tuesday and play their best game of the series since their Game 1 win.

Now, they just need to do it two more times to flip the tables on the Panthers and erase a 3-1 series deficit for themselves.

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