David Pastrnak scored a hat trick for the Boston Bruins in a 5-2 win against the New York Islanders in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Second Round at TD Garden in Boston on Saturday.
Pastrnak has scored each of his five goals in the Stanley Cup Playoffs in the past three games. He was held without one in the first three games of Boston’s first-round series against the Washington Capitals.
“It seems like he rises to the occasion every time he’s asked to,” Bruins captain Patrice Bergeron said. “I think he’s one of those guys [who] brings that energy, but also he loves to get the crowd going. It seems kind of fitting for him to have one of those nights with the fans back in the building.”
Charlie McAvoy scored the go-ahead goal in the third period, and Tuukka Rask made 20 saves for the Bruins, who have won five consecutive games. David Krejci had three assists.
Teams that win Game 1 are 495-224 (68.8 percent) winning a best-of-7 NHL playoff series, including 5-2 in the first round this season.
“Obviously, he’s feeling it,” Boston coach Bruce Cassidy said of Pastrnak. “He broke through [against] Washington late, had plenty of opportunities, so that was the good news. It was only a matter of time. That line’s (Pastrnak, Bergeron and Brad Marchand) really humming.”
Ilya Sorokin made 35 saves for the Islanders but lost for the first time in five playoff starts. Jordan Eberle had two assists.
Game 2 will be played at Boston on Monday.
“We’re going to need more from our lines,” New York coach Barry Trotz said. “I really felt that I only had really one line [that] was on top of their game. The other lines had spurts. Right through our whole lineup, we’re going to have to be much better.”
McAvoy gave the Bruins a 3-2 lead at 6:20 with a one-timer at the point off a pass from Krejci. The goal came 18 seconds after Boston killed a penalty for having too many men on the ice.
Pastrnak completed his hat trick with a wrist shot from the slot at 15:50 to make it 4-2.
“Anything can happen in the playoffs,” McAvoy said. ” … The smallest little thing can lead to huge shifts in the game. We had that penalty, and I think the overall mindset on our bench was, ‘Let’s kill this thing off and go back to work.’ I thought we were playing well before that happened. We were able to do that.
“Sure enough, you take sort of a nothing play, just a point shot, and it turns into a goal, and then [Pastrnak is] able to get us an insurance goal there with his skill, and we were able to get the job done.”
Pastrnak tied it 1-1 on the power play at 19:36 of the first period, then gave Boston a 2-1 lead when he one-timed a rebound in the left face-off circle at 11:08 of the second.
Adam Pelech scored 1:26 later with a one-timer from the point to tie it 2-2 at 12:34.
Anthony Beauvillier gave the Islanders a 1-0 lead at 11:48 of the first period on a redirection of Noah Dobson‘s shot from the point on a power play.
“I think we’ve just got to stick to what we do best and our game plan and what brought us here,” Beauvillier said. “Obviously, they’re a really good team, and the further you’re going to go in the playoffs, the harder the games are going to get and the harder it will be to win.
“They obviously have a lot of firepower up front and, yeah, they’re good players and they want to score goals, and it’s going to be our job to defend better and obviously create more offense.”
Taylor Hall scored into an empty net with 1:25 left for the 5-2 final.
The attendance was 17,400, the largest crowd in the NHL this season.
“It’s a different sport with them in the building,” Pastrnak said. “It definitely kind of warms your heart and kind of reminds you why you play this sport. It was awesome to have them back. Just coming on for warmups, it was so much fun. They [were] our seventh player all night. Really good job by them. I enjoyed it a lot.”
NOTES: Bruins forward Craig Smith left the game at 1:20 of the third period because of a lower-body injury. Cassidy said he’ll be reevaluated Sunday. … It was Pastrnak’s second hat trick in the NHL playoffs (Game 2 of 2018 Eastern Conference First Round against Toronto Maple Leafs). … Beauvillier has scored in three straight games. … The Bruins have been penalized for having too many men three times this postseason. … Boston defenseman Jeremy Lauzon returned after missing four games because of an upper-body injury. He had three hits in 18:18. … Islanders forward Oliver Wahlstrom missed a second straight game with an undisclosed injury.