Bruins Daily will be taking a look at the top 10 Bruins regular season games of 2010-11, followed by the top ten playoff games of the 2010-11 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Today we take a look at No. 6: Eastern Conference Finals: Game 5, Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Boston Bruins.
The Bruins and Lightning hit the Garden ice in Game 5, tied at two games apiece. With the series now a best-of-3, both teams knew the magnitude of this important Game 5.
Thanks to Tim Thomas, the Bruins survived a terrible first period en route to a 3-1 victory that put the black and gold just one win away from playing for Lord Stanley’s Cup.
Bruins killer Simon Gagne scored just over a minute into the first giving Tampa Bay the early 1-0 lead. Tampa Bay kept going hard at the Bruins and Thomas as they registered 14 shots on net, the Bruins only managed four.
The Bruins started the second period off the way they wanted to start the game when Nathan Horton added his seventh goal of the playoffs a little less than five minutes into the period.
Midway through the second, with the score knotted at one, Brad Marchand tipped in a beautiful pass from Patrice Bergeron giving the Bruins their first lead of the game.
With the Bruins clinging to the 2-1 lead midway through the third, it looked like the Lightning would tie things up when a Tampa shot went wide and took a crazy bounce off the boards. The puck bounced right to the stick of Steve Downie who had a wide open net. Downie tapped the puck towards the open net when Thomas came from post to post keeping the puck out of the back of the net with his stick, by far the best save of the playoffs.
Rich Peverley would add the empty net goal, and propel the Bruins to the 3-2 series lead.
Bruins Goal Scorers: Horton, Marchand, Peverley
Lightning Goal Scorers: Gagne
For the third time in the series a goal was scored in the first 80 seconds of the game.
Nathan Horton’s second period goal snapped Mike Smiths streak of minutes played without a goal at 85:15.
The Lightning outshot the Bruins 34-20.
It was the fifth time in the series where the team who won more faceoffs won the game.