Around the NHL: Blues Take Game 2 in OT, Even Series

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

Late in regulation, Carl Gunnarsson had a chance to put the Blues in front and break a 2-2 tie. He hit the post. In overtime, Gunnarsson got redemption.

Gunnarsson scored on a delayed penalty call at 3:51 of overtime to give the St. Louis Blues a 3-2 win over the Boston Bruins in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final, sending the series back to St. Louis tied, 1-1.

It didn't take long for the Bruins to take advantage of another power-play opportunity given to them by the Blues. At 4:44 of the first period, Charlie Coyle took a feed from Jake DeBrusk in the slot and buried the shot through the five-hole of Jordan Binnington to give the Bruins the early lead.

St. Louis got the goal back at 9:37 with Robert Bortuzzo firing a shot from a sharp angle that hit the stick of Matt Grzelcyk and beat Tuukka Rask. It took just 40 seconds for the Bruins to respond and regain the lead. Off a turnover by David Perron, Sean Kuraly set up Joakim Nordstrom in front and Nordstrom went to the backhand to beat Binnington through the five-hole again.

Just under five minutes later, at 14:55 of the first period, the Blues got the goal back again. This time, it was Vladimir Tarasenko picked up the goal, getting his own rebound to even the score at two.

After the first period, shots were 10-8 in favor of the Blues. The Blues had also taken two penalties in the period and managed to kill off one.

The Blues really controlled most of the second period, outshooting the Bruins, 14-6. The Bruins and Blues each killed off penalties in the first 13 minutes of the period. Then at the 15:39 mark, Connor Clifton took a high-sticking double-minor, giving the Blues a chance to take the momentum. The Blues could not, failing to get much on Rask and taking a goalie interference penalty with 1:43 left on the double-minor. The Blues killed off the short power play for the Bruins.

In the third, both teams had chances to get the upper hand and take the lead, especially late. The Bruins had two of the best chances. With 6:38 left in the period, Brayden Schenn took a slashing penalty to put the Bruins on the power play, but the Blues successfully killed it off. In the closing minutes, Gunnarsson hit the post and Patrice Bergeron was robbed in front by Binnington.

That set up overtime with the shot totals at 33-23 in favor of the Blues. In the overtime, the Blues took the only four shots of the period.

St. Louis was swarming in the offensive zone, and that helped draw a penalty. During the delayed call, Gunnarsson dished off to Ryan O'Reilly, who returned to puck to the defenseman in position to unleash a one-timer. The puck got through the screen of Alex Pietrangelo and beat Rask high to secure the win for the Blues.

Binnington made 21 saves in the win. Rask made 34 saves in the loss.

The overtime win was the first Stanley Cup Final win for the Blues in franchise history. In their previous three trips to the Stanley Cup Final, the Blues were swept each time.

The series now heads back to St. Louis, even at one game apiece. Game 3 will be on Saturday night at 8 p.m.

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