Nashville goaltender Pekka Rinne suffered a humiliating first period substitution as the Predators were thrashed 5-1 by the Dallas Stars on Wednesday in their Stanley Cup playoff series.
Finnish veteran Rinne — recipient of the NHL’s goaltender of the year award in 2018 — was hooked by Predators boss Peter Laviolette after a disastrous opening spell in Dallas.
The 36-year-old leaked four goals from eight shots before being hauled off the ice in favour of Juuse Saros.
Although Saros performed creditably for the remainder of the game, the contest had effectively been decided after Rinne’s nightmare opening.
Roope Hintz scored twice for Dallas as the home side leveled their Western Conference series at 2-2.
John Klingber and Esa Lindell provided the assists for Dallas while Ben Bishop made 34 saves, with the Predators’ lone goal coming from Roman Josi. Game five takes place on Saturday.
Avs put Flames on brink with OT win
Mikko Rantanen’s second goal of the game was the overtime winner as the Colorado Avalanche erased a two-goal deficit and beat the Calgary Flames 3-2 Wednesday night in Denver.
The result put the Western Conference’s No. 1 seed, Calgary, on the brink of elimination in the opening round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. The Avalanche lead the best-of-seven series 3-1. Game 5 will be Friday in Calgary.
Shortly after the Flames failed to convert on a power play, the Avalanche raced up the ice, and Carl Soderberg fed Rantanen a cross-ice pass that he one-timed for the winner. Avalanche goalie Philipp Grubauer made 35 saves, while Calgary netminder Mike Smith stopped 49 shots.
After a scoreless first period, Calgary’s Elias Lindholm broke the deadlock with a power-play goal 3:25 into the second. Derek Ryan doubled the Calgary lead at 6:58 of the third period. The Avalanche’s J.T. Compher scored 72 seconds later on a rebound, then Rantanen tied the game with a power-play goal with 2:50 remaining in regulation.
Boston hold to leave series at 2-2
David Pastrnak scored twice, Brad Marchand added a goal and two assists, and visiting Boston held on to defeat Toronto to even the first-round Eastern Conference playoff series at two games apiece.
Charlie McAvoy had a goal and an assist, and Zdeno Chara and Joakim Nordstrom each scored once for the Bruins, who will host Game 5 in the best-of-seven series on Friday.
Auston Matthews scored twice for Toronto, and Zach Hyman and Travis Dermott each scored once. Morgan Rielly added two assists for Toronto. Tuukka Rask made 38 saves for Boston while Toronto’s Frederik Andersen stopped 25 shots.
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