VANCOUVER - Alexandre Burrows left his mark on the Boston Bruins once again in Game 2.
Quickly becoming more than just the third guy on a line with the dynamic Sedin twins, Burrows scored 11 seconds into overtime Saturday night after collecting a goal and an assist in regulation to give the Vancouver Canucks a 3-2 victory and a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven Stanley Cup Final.
Not only did Burrows score his eighth and ninth goals of the postseason one game after his biting incident with Boston's Patrice Bergeron on Wednesday, but he also scored his third overtime goal of the playoffs in nearly record fashion. Only Brian Skrudland's goal nine seconds into overtime for the Montreal Canadiens in the 1986 against the Calgary Flames happened faster during a Cup Final overtime.
Only two other players in NHL history have scored three OT goals in one postseason -- Maurice Richard of the Canadiens in 1951 and Mel Hill of the Bruins in 1939.
With 17 points in the playoffs and 89 goals the past three regular seasons, maybe it's time people started treating Burrows as the perfect complement for the Sedins and not a guy who won the hockey line sweepstakes.
"I don't know what games anyone is watching, because he's a big part of our line," Henrik Sedin
said. "I've always said his main asset is he reads the play so well. A lot of the times, he's the guy making plays. That's what we need as players. For a lot of years here, a lot of people said we needed a big grinder. That's not the guy we want to play with. We want to play with a guy who can make plays. He's that guy.
Burrows' overtime winner in Game 2 was a thing of a beauty that virtually defied the laws of physics.
Boston's Patrice Bergeron
won the opening faceoff back to Andrew Ference
, who chipped the puck up the right-wing boards. Canucks defenseman Alex Edler read the play and intercepted the puck at his own blue line and chipped it ahead to Daniel Sedin
, who knocked it forward to Burrows.
The 6-foot-1 Burrows streaked down the left wing and somehow evaded the reach of the 6-foot-9 Zdeno Chara
, who was draped all over him. Burrows then faked his shot to get hard-charging goaltender Tim Thomas
down to the ice before swooping around behind the net for a wraparound that caused the roof to nearly pop off Rogers Arena.
"Danny made a perfect chip," Burrows said. "I know Tim Thomas
likes to challenge. If I shoot there, I think he stops it. So I wanted to walk around and shoot it right away but he tripped me and I lost the puck a little bit. I was lucky enough just to be able to wrap it."
Burrows opened the scoring midway through the first period on a power play, and he did so with nary a Sedin on the ice.
Defenseman Sami Salo
made a smart play along the left-wing wall to block a clearing attempt, then shoveled the puck to Chris Higgins
at the right of Thomas. Higgins knocked the puck down to Burrows, who fired a quick shot from a sharp angle between the blocker arm and body of Thomas to make it 1-0 at 12:12 of the first period.
After 81 scoreless minutes, the Bruins finally scored their first goal of the Stanley Cup Final. Milan Lucic
slipped a loose puck under Roberto Luongo
after the goaltender was unable to control a blast from the point by Johnny Boychuck. It took less than three minutes for the Bruins to grab their first lead of the series by scoring a rare power-play goal.
Mark Recchi, who turned 43 in February, became the oldest player in NHL history to score in the Stanley Cup Playoffs when he deflected a wrist shot from Chara 2:35 after Lucic's goal. It was only the Bruins' sixth power-play goal of the playoffs.
"I go back to last game here," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "We had six power plays. I thought we generated some good opportunities. We didn't score. Tonight we got rewarded. I thought our guys again tonight did a good job at moving the puck around, getting some opportunities."
The Bruins were 6-0 when leading after two periods in the postseason. But Burrows helped put an end to that perfection.
Burrows looked more like Henrik Sedin
when he assisted on Daniel Sedin
's tying goal at 9:37 of the third period. He tried to deflect a shot from the point by Edler, but the puck never got through to the net. When it came to the rest near his skates, he slipped the puck to the left circle, where Daniel Sedin
buried the puck into a wide-open net with Thomas far out of his net to cut down the angle on Burrows.
"I think that comes from him knowing where we're going to be and we know where he's going to be," Henrik Sedin
said. "In those areas, he looks up and knows Danny is going to come there. That comes from playing together for a long time. He made a great play there."
"I think all three of us are pretty similar," Daniel Sedin
said. "I think we had to work really hard to get to where we are. Obviously, when we first played with him a couple years back, we realized right away he was a good complement to us. I don't want to say he's underrated, but he brings a lot to the table. He works hard, forechecks, brings pucks to us. Like he showed today, he can score some big goals."
There was some thought that Burrows would be suspended for Game 2 after allegedly biting Bergeron in Game 1. Julien was quick to dismiss that notion as a reason for the Bruins to be upset following a brilliant performance in the following game.
"That has nothing to do with that," Julien said of the lack of a suspension. "I never thought about that that way. They made a decision. We moved on. For us, if we start using that as an excuse, we're a lame team."
Game 3 will be played Monday night at TD Garden in Boston.
Facing an 0-2 deficit is nothing new to the Bruins, who overcame losing the first two games in the first round against the Canadiens in Boston before rallying to win the series in seven games.
Despite the recent history that clearly shows the series is far from over, the Canucks will take their chances with a 2-0 lead in the series.
"We haven't won anything yet," Burrows said. "It's only two games. We've only taken care of home ice. They're a really good team and I'm sure they're going to feed off the energy from their crowd. We have to make sure we're ready to go in there. It won't be easy. Until you win a road game, you're not in control of any series."
Follow Dave Lozo on Twitter: @DaveLozo