NHL·NHL PLAYOFF ROUNDUP

Kyrou, Perron combine for 4 goals as Blues cruise past Wild to even series

Jordan Kyrou and David Perron each scored twice, Jordan Binnington made 28 saves in his first start this post-season and the St. Louis Blues beat the Minnesota Wild 5-2 on Sunday to even the best-of-seven Western Conference series at 2-2.

Marchand, Bergeron pull Bruins even with Hurricanes, combining for 3 goals, 8 points

Blues centre Jordan Kyrou, left, scored two goals in a 5-2 game four win over the Wild in their Stanley Cup Playoff first-round series on Sunday in St. Louis. (Jeff Le/USA TODAY Sports via Reuters)

St. Louis goalie Jordan Binnington didn't lose any sleep when he was informed by coach Craig Berube that he would be starting for the first time this post-season on Sunday.

"He's always the same, he doesn't give me much of a reaction," Berube said.

Instead, Binnington let his play do the talking.

Binnington made 28 saves and the Blues beat the Minnesota Wild 5-2 on Sunday to even the best-of-seven Western Conference series at two games apiece.

Jordan Kyrou and David Perron each scored twice and Ryan O'Reilly added a goal and two assists. Perron also had an assist for St. Louis.

Kirill Kaprizov and Matt Boldy scored for Minnesota. Marc-Andre Fleury made 29 saves.

Game 5 is Tuesday night at St. Paul, Minnesota, before returning to St. Louis for Game 6 on Thursday.

Binnington, who had lost his previous nine post-season starts, picked up his first playoff win since beating Boston in Game 7 of the 2019 Stanley Cup Final. He denied Kaprizov from point-blank range late in the second period. Binnington also stopped Mats Zuccarello on a 2-on-1 breakout midway through the final period.

"I felt prepared," Binnington said. "I felt pretty good."

Binnington had been supplanted by Ville Husso, who have up nine goals on 59 shots combined in Games 2 and 3 after shutting out the Wild with 37 saves in the opener.

"You have to be ready for whatever comes up," Binnington said. "We just have to focus on our job, whatever it is that night."

Coach Craig Berube said he went with Binnington as a hunch.

"We wanted to make a switch and just change the momentum and luck a little bit," Berube said.

Kyrou and Perron scored 54 seconds apart in the second period to break a 1-1 tie.,

Perron converted the go-ahead score on a shot that squeezed past Fleury towards the net. Minnesota forward Marcus Foligno tried to keep the puck from rolling across the line, but he flipped it off the back of Fleury and into the net.

Kyrou got his second of the game to push the lead to 3-1 with a shot off a pass from Ryan O'Reilly, who assisted on both second-period goals.

"Obviously, we wanted to come out hot, and come out strong," Kyrou said. "We did that today and we should continue to do it all series long."

Boldy cut the deficit to 3-2 by scoring off a scramble in from of the net 2:39 into the final period.

Perron added an empty net goal with 1:58 remaining, and O'Reilly had a power-play goal with 1 minute left to cap the scoring.

St. Louis struck first when Kyrou pounced on his own rebound just 4:19 into the game.

Kaprizov tied it 1-1 with his fifth goal of the series off a pass from Jared Spurgeon with 5:54 left in the opening period.

Kaprivoz, who recorded the first hat trick in post-season franchise history in Game 2, was wide open in the slot.

His five goals ties him with Wes Walz and Marian Gaborik for most goals in a series. Walz and Gaborik each scored five times in the 2003 Western Conference semifinals against Vancouver.

"It's not one guy, it's the Minnesota Wild that didn't get to our game quick enough," Minnesota coach Dean Evason said.. "In the third period we did. But it was a little too late."

Marchand, Bergeron lead Bruins to series-tying victory

Brad Marchand raced toward the empty net, and there was nothing Carolina defenceman Tony DeAngelo could do except throw his stick at the puck. Forward Jesperi Kotkaniemi shattered his across the goal in frustration.

It's the playoffs, and Marchand is at his best — scoring, passing and getting under his opponent's skin.

"It's a time he loves to play, and he shows it," Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said after Marchand's two-goal, three-assist game in Boston's 5-2 Game 4 victory over the Hurricanes on Sunday tied the first-round playoff series at 2.

"There's some chirping going on now, too," Cassidy said. "And I think that can elevate his game, as well."

Patrice Bergeron had a goal and two assists and drew a high-sticking double minor from Sebastian Aho at the end of the second period that gave the Bruins a 5-on-3 and left their captain with a black eye and several stitches.

Sixty-eight seconds after the penalty, and 44 seconds into the third period, Marchand scored to break a 2-2 tie.

Rookie Jeremy Swayman made 23 saves for his second straight win, and David Pastrnak had a goal and an assist.

The series returns to Carolina for Game 5 on Tuesday night.

"It starts over now. We just regroup," Hurricanes coach Rod Brind'Amour said. "You should have a little emotion right now. It should hurt, and it should bother you and then tomorrow you start fresh."

And now, the Bruins are assured a Game 6 in Boston on Thursday.

"This is what every kid's kind of hoping — to get that opportunity playing for that Cup," Marchand said. "These are the most fun games to play in, when there's high emotion, high intensity and the most is on the line. If you can't play in these games, I don't know what you're playing for."

Jake DeBrusk also scored for the Bruins, who scratched top defenceman Charlie McAvoy after he went into the NHL's COVID-19 protocol about an hour before the opening faceoff. No. 2 defenceman Hampus Lindholm has been out since a hit to the head in Game 2.

"We're playing for our season," Marchand said. "It's really tough when you lose guys like that, but here's a lot of pride in the room, a lot of character We've always shown that."

Brett Pesce and Jordan Staal scored for Carolina, and Antti Raanta returned to stop 23 shots for the Metropolitan Division champions.

Pesce gave Carolina the lead six minutes into the game, the fourth straight time the Hurricanes have scored first — the seventh time, if you count their three regular-season wins over Boston.

But Bergeron tied it with four minutes to play in the first period when he slid a loose puck through Raanta's legs. Just 33 seconds into the second period, Nino Niederreiter backhanded it out to Staal for the one-timer that gave Carolina a 2-1 lead.

In the last 90 seconds of the second period, Marchand backhanded the puck into Raanta and it wound up in the crease just sitting there for DeBrusk to clean up.

Brind'Amour challenged for goalie interference, but the call stood. That gave Boston a power play, and it became a 5-on-3 when Aho cut Bergeron's eye.

Boston still had 44 seconds on the 5-on-3 and 2:58 after that on the double-minor when the third period started. With one second left in the two-man advantage, Marchand wristed one into the net to give Boston its first lead of the day.

Pastrnak added an insurance goal five minutes later, and Marchand put in an empty-netter.

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