One down, now what?
The Habs’ win over the Bruins on Thursday night at the Bell Centre marked the 20th time the longtime rivals had opened a playoff series in Montreal. That 4-1 win brought the Canadiens’ record in opening games of a series kicked off at home to a whopping 18-2. It’s quite another story in cases where the Bruins began a series in Beantown, with the B’s coming out on top in Game 1 on 8 of 11 occasions.
Over the 20 times the Canadiens have jumped out to a 1-0 series lead against the Bruins, Montreal has gone on to win the series every time but once.
The only time the Habs won Game 1 against the Bruins but failed to win the series Guy Carbonneau was taking face-offs for the Habs while eight-month-old Carey Price was still in diapers. In the second round of the 1988 playoffs, the Habs downed Boston 5-2 in the opening game, only to lose the next four straight. While being ousted by the Bruins that year mustn’t have been much fun for Carbonneau and then-captain Bob Gainey, the Bruins were bound to win one eventually with that playoff triumph ending a painful 42-year, 18-series postseason drought for Boston versus the Habs.
As for what should be expected for Game 2 at the Bell Centre, the Canadiens are 15-4 on home-ice after drawing first blood in an opening game against the Bruins, so you do the math.
Manny Almela is a writer for canadiens.com