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Both teams missed plenty of chances before the Canadiens scored on a power play in the last minute of the second period.
Now the Bruins have very little chance after losing 1-0 on Tuesday night.
Down 3-1 and returning to Montreal where it lost the first two games, Boston must win Thursday night or finish its eighth straight season without making it past the first round. Their meager offensive output — five goals in the first four games — doesn't bode well.
"When we had a chance to capitalize tonight and we had some great opportunities, we didn't bury them," first-year Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "Sometimes it's those little details that make the big difference."
Julien has been down 3-1 before and come back to win a best-of-seven series. It happened in 2004 when he coached Montreal against Boston.
"You don't want to start comparing. You don't want to start thinking that those things just happen that easily," Julien said. "You've got to think about winning the next game. ... You don't look at the fact you have to win the next three. It's too big of a picture."
In other NHL playoff games on Tuesday night, it was: Philadelphia 6, Washington 3; Anaheim 4, Dallas 2; San Jose 3, Calgary 2; and Colorado 5, Minnesota 1.
The Bruins are 0-20 in series they trailed 3-1. And the 2004 team didn't have a goalie as hot as 20-year-old rookie Carey Price, who has allowed seven goals in the Canadiens past seven games and posted his first playoff shutout.
He saved all 27 shots and stopped point-blank attempts by Glen Murray and Glen Metropolit in the second half of the second period. Then the Bruins swarmed around the net in the final minute of the game.
"It came right down to the last 10 seconds," Price said. "The guys would have blocked shots with their teeth tonight. That's the kind of hockey you need to win. It is the way we have to play the next game."
Tim Thomas also stopped 27 shots for Boston and never saw the one that got behind him — a power-play goal from 30 feet by 17-year veteran Patrice Brisebois with 42 seconds left in the second period.
"I saw him winding up to take the shot and then I lost it," Thomas said. "I couldn't see the puck because it was buried in the net. And then I saw the Canadiens celebrating."
A bigger celebration may be coming after Game 5 unless the Bruins, a mediocre offensive team to begin with, can do a better job against Price.
"Right now he's in the comfort zone and it's going to be tough to get him out of it," Montreal coach Guy Carbonneau said.
The Canadiens are the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference and the Bruins are No. 8. Montreal won all eight meetings in the regular season and the first two in the playoffs before Boston pulled out a 2-1 overtime win on Sunday night.
Three of the four games have been decided by one goal.
"You're looking at two teams right now that are pretty evenly matched," Julien said. "It's a question of inches."
This program aired on April 16, 2008. The audio for this program is not available.
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