Hasek shuts down Bruins 3-1 to even up series
Posted: Monday May 10, 1999 01:52 PM
BOSTON (AP) -- Dominik Hasek is hot again and tempers may soon reach the boiling point now that Buffalo has gained a hard-hitting split of its first two playoff games in Boston.
"I thought he played good," Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff said of Hasek, the NHL's two-time defending MVP. "I thought he played real good."
Hasek was headed for his fifth career playoff shutout before Don Sweeney's power-play goal with 5:57 left cut the lead to 2-1. The Sabres survived another power play and restored the two-goal margin on Ward's empty-net goal with 37 seconds remaining.
"This was the most important game of the season for us," Brown said. "It didn't matter how we won. We just had to get the win."
The Sabres will have the home crowd behind them in Wednesday night's third game of the best-of-7 Eastern Conference semifinal. And they may have the Bruins pounding them.
"It was a dirty hit. That's for sure," Bourque said. "There's a lot more games to play. You can dish it out. Sometimes you find yourself on the other side of those hits."
Zhitnik, who drew a two-minute penalty, said he didn't intend to hurt Bourque.
"If I wanted to injure him," Zhitnik said, "he wouldn't be playing anymore."
Tune in Wednesday for the next round.
"If they take a run at our best player, they should expect the same thing back," Boston's Rob DiMaio said.
The Bruins have a more important task: winning in a building where they are 1-7-1 in their last nine games, including 0-3 this season.
"A lot of teams are winning on the road," Bourque said, "but it's going to be tough."
Especially if the Sabres start the game as aggressively as they did Sunday. Peca scored 1:51 into the game and Buffalo outshot Boston 17-5 in the first period.
"The first half of the game was our best effort in the playoffs," Hasek said. "We outskated them and outhit them. I'm sure Boston will be ready the next game."
The Sabres hope Miroslav Satan, who led them with 40 regular-season goals, will be also after missing his third straight game with a bruised foot.
Peca and Brown provided the offense with their second playoff goals. Brown's came during a two-man advantage at 5:57 of the second period.
Sweeney made it 2-1 with his second playoff goal with a rising 30-foot shot from the left while Hasek was on his knees in the crease.
That seemed to energize the Bruins, who dominated the rest of the game but couldn't beat Hasek again even though they had another power play with 2:44 remaining.
The loss ended Boston's four-game winning streak, including the last three games of its opening-round win over Carolina, and gave Buffalo home-ice advantage in the series.
Hasek was the key to Buffalo reaching the Eastern Conference finals last year and his role hasn't changed for a Sabres team that relies on tight checking and mediocre offense.
His nine regular-season shutouts were second only to the 10 recorded by Boston's Byron Dafoe.
Hasek wasn't spectacular in the first period but didn't need to be as he faced just five shots. The Bruins had been outshot 21-10 before Zhitnik was penalized at 14:57 of the second period.
Peca then drew a roughing penalty at 16:54 and Zhitnik went back into the penalty box at 17:12 for hitting Bourque.
That gave the Bruins a two-man advantage for 1:42, but they managed just three shots. Hasek's best save in that stretch came on a 5-footer by Dmitri Khristich. Then with 7:46 left in the game, Hasek sprawled to corral a rebound of Kyle McLaren's 45-foot blast.
Hasek's quickest move may have come at 5:01 of the third period when he covered the puck with his glove before McLaren jabbed at it. Hasek, along with several teammates, chased McLaren into the corner where players clutched each other. McLaren and Buffalo's Jay McKee were penalized.
Peca's goal came after Dafoe tapped the puck as Brown was passing it from behind the net. It deflected to Peca, who beat Dafoe with a quick shot from the inside edge of the right circle to the far side.
Brown scored with Ken Belanger and Tim Taylor in the penalty box for Boston, which led the NHL in penalty killing. Standing on the goal line to the left of Dafoe, Brown swept it to the far side past Dafoe.
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