Marcus Johansson and Patrice Bergeron each scored on the power play in a span of 28 seconds in the third, and Tuukka Rask had 29 saves as the Boston Bruins beat the visiting Carolina Hurricanes 5-2 in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Final on Thursday.
Johansson struck first when he cleaned up a rebound of a Brad Marchand shot at 2:26, and Bergeron scored on a feed from Marchand at 2:54 as the Bruins extended their winning streak to four while halting the Hurricanes' at six.
Game 2 of the best-of-seven series is Sunday in Boston.
Sebastian Aho and Greg McKegg scored for Carolina, and Petr Mrazek stopped 23 shots in his return from a two-game absence following a lower-body injury.
The Hurricanes took a 2-1 lead into the third period before a slew of penalties awakened Boston's dangerous power play. Jordan Staal boarded Chris Wagner to lead to Johansson's score, and Dougie Hamilton roughed Joakim Nordstrom ahead of Bergeron's go-ahead marker. Hamilton would again be penalized for interference in the period, but Carolina killed the penalty.
The Hurricanes pulled Mrazek down 3-2 with 2:38 remaining, but Charlie Carlo and Wagner put the game away for Boston with empty-netters 11 seconds apart.
Steven Kampfer, playing his second playoff game with defenseman Charlie McAvoy suspended for an illegal check in the series finale against the Columbus Blue Jackets, got the Bruins on the board at 2:55 of the first period, but their early lead lasted less than a minute.
The Hurricanes replied three seconds after Sean Kuraly went to the box for roughing. Aho deflected a pass from Andrei Svechnikov in front of the net for a 1-1 tie at 3:42.
Boston defenseman Zdeno Chara ended the first in the locker room after blocking an Aho shot with his right foot and limping down the tunnel. Chara returned early in the second.
Carolina took a 2-1 lead in hectic fashion at 9:18 of the second. McKegg's shot trickled through Rask's legs just before the forward crashed into the goal and knocked the net off its moorings. The goal counted without review.