BOSTON -- Mitchell Marner scored twice to help the Toronto Maple Leafs defeat the Boston Bruins 4-1 in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference First Round at TD Garden on Thursday.
William Nylander and John Tavares scored, and Frederik Andersen made 37 saves for the Maple Leafs, who lost three of four games to the Bruins during the regular season.
"I thought it was a good road game for us," Toronto coach Mike Babcock said. "You know we gave up the first goal there when we missed an assignment, but I thought other than that we had played well, and we seemed to get back to it. We had a stretch in the second period where we didn't execute in our own zone well, and then I thought they were pretty good. But other than that, we had a pretty good night."
[WATCH: Maple Leafs vs. Bruins Game 1 highlights | Complete series coverage]
Patrice Bergeron scored, and Tuukka Rask made 29 saves for Boston, which defeated Toronto in seven games in the first round last season.
"They're a team that works hard and gets their chances by putting the puck on net and converging," Bergeron said. "I think we didn't take care of the blue lines, that's where we got caught many times and you know, against a team like them, they're going to capitalize and get some momentum out of it."
Game 2 of the best-of-7 series is here Saturday.
Video: TOR@BOS, Gm1: Marner scores after hitting both posts
Bergeron scored a power-play goal at 9:31 of the first period to give the Bruins a 1-0 lead. Brad Marchand skated toward the high slot and drew a couple of defenders to him before hitting Bergeron on a backdoor cut to the right side of the slot.
Marner tied it 1-1 at 16:44 after his initial redirection hit the post but the rebound went back to him at the right side of the net.
Marner scored shorthanded on a penalty shot at 2:47 of the second period for a 2-1 Toronto lead. He drew the penalty after stripping the puck from Jake DeBrusk at the Toronto blue line, getting taken down from behind by DeBrusk on a breakaway. Marner became the fifth player to score on a shorthanded penalty shot in the playoffs.
"We know we're fast in this locker room," Marner said. "I think when we play right it's hard to stop us. Tonight we just wanted to make sure we were getting pucks in for the first 10 minutes. It made it hard on the defense. I thought we did a great job of that. Our four lines played very well tonight with our defensive core. Frederik again was unbelievable."
Nylander scored through Rask's five-hole with 1:35 left in the period to extend the lead to 3-1 after Kadri sprung him on a breakaway with a long pass.
"Well I saw him in stride and I just tried to get my head up," Kadri said. "And I knew I had to put a little bit of extra juice on it for it to get there. So he did a great job skating up ice and finishing the job."
Tavares scored into an empty net with 1:19 remaining in the third period for the 4-1 final.
"Sometimes you get … with some time off you get away from playing your style, you know, but I think maybe we thought it was going to be a little bit easier than it was out there," Bruins forward Brad Marchand said of Boston playing its first game in five days, the same as Toronto. "But we were trying to play too much of a controlled style, where that's not really our game. So we've just got to play a little faster."
Video: TOR@BOS, Gm1: Nylander goes five-hole on breakaway
They said it
"That's a great win for us. We played very well as a team, but we're going to need to keep it going throughout the series. The games are just going to get harder and harder. As a team, we've just got to make sure we come to play every night." -- Maple Leafs forward Mitchell Marner
"That was a [David Pastrnak] move; he's done that in practice. I put my whole weight on my right foot, and then I just couldn't get there anymore. It was a nice move, fresh ice too, so I probably should've recognized that, but yeah, good move." -- Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask on Marner's puck-handling on the penalty shot
Need to know
The team that wins Game 1 has a best-of-7 series record of 467-214 (.686). … Toronto forward Patrick Marleau skated in his 185th NHL postseason game, tying Denis Potvin for 27th. … Marner became the second player in Maple Leafs history to score on a playoff penalty shot. Mats Sundin did it against the Buffalo Sabres in Game 4 of 1999 Eastern Conference Final. Marner's shot was Toronto's fourth postseason attempt. … Rask stopped the only other playoff penalty shot he has faced, against Ville Leino of the Philadelphia Flyers in Game 6 of the 2010 Eastern Conference Semifinals.
Game 2 of Eastern Conference First Round at TD Garden on Saturday (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, TVAS)
Video: Marner scores twice as Maple Leafs take Game 1