(Reuters) - Montreal netminder Carey Price stonewalled Boston to lift the Canadiens to a 4-0 win on Monday and force a deciding Game Seven in their Eastern Conference semi-final.
Price made 26 saves for his first shutout of the playoffs while Thomas Vanek scored twice to allow the Canadiens to shake off two straight defeats against the Bruins and even the best-of-seven series at 3-3.
The series finale is in Boston on Wednesday.
”Win or lose, you want to be in that situation,“ Montreal defenseman P.K. Subban told reporters of the winner-take-all scenario. ”Everybody has the opportunity going into there to be the guy, to put their team over the top.
“There are a lot of guys in this room that want to keep playing hockey, and we have an opportunity to do that.”
Lars Eller fired Montreal into the lead a little more than two minutes into the game, giving the home Bell Centre crowd an early boost.
Max Pacioretty scored at 15:24 in the second, while Vanek netted about two minutes later and again late in the third to put the finishing touches on an easy victory.
Montreal’s offense broke out in a big way after being limited in a 1-0 Game Four loss and a 4-2 Game Five setback.
Particularly, Pacioretty, who was the team’s leading scorer during the regular season but has struggled during this series. He added an assist on the night.
“I read every article written about me and it taught me how to score,” Pacioretty joked. “I love the pressure, it helps me get ready for every game. But you’ve just got to wait for your bounces.”
This is the 34th time the Bruins and Canadiens have met in post-season play, more than any other rivalry in NHL history.
Boston is looking to return to the Eastern finals after falling to the Chicago Blackhawks in the Stanley Cup a year ago.
Tuukka Rask made 24 saves in defeat for the Bruins.
Writing by Jahmal Corner; Editing by John O'Brien