BOSTON — No one was more snake-bit for the Bruins in their four-game Eastern Conference semifinal sweep of Philadelphia than Rich Peverley.
The veteran forward hit the post on a 3-on-2 in overtime in Game 2. With the Bruins looking to extend their lead from 1-0 in the second period of Game 4, he hit the outside of the net from left of the slot with goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky way out of position.
For the series, Peverley finished with just one assist in the four games.
“I think if I wasn’t getting chances, I’d be worried. But I had plenty of chances,” he said after the Game 4 win. “I’ve got to bury [the shot on the open net]. But we found a way to win and that’s the most important thing.”
A huge part of the win was Johnny Boychuk’s go-ahead goal early in the third period. He doesn’t get any credit on the score sheet, but Peverley’s screen in front helped Bobrovsky miss the knuckling puck. It takes some courage to go to the front when Boychuk winds up for a “Johnny Rocket.” Peverley showed no fear.
“I was just trying to do a flash screen. It maybe tipped off their guy and it had eyes and it found its way [into the net],” he said.
For the playoffs Peverley now has 1-5-6 totals in 11 games. However, he was a key component in a 12-for-14 penalty kill and helped the power play get back on track with some solid pressure to go along with the 5-on-4 goal Boston’s other quintet scored.
The Bruins got a taste of life without Patrice Bergeron for most of the third period and now know they might be missing him at the start of the Eastern Conference finals series with Tampa Bay. Peverley will be a huge part of making up for that loss.
“Everyone’s got to step up,” said Peverley. “He’s a great penalty-killer, a great defensive player and obviously he’s a big part of team.”