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DeBrusk scores two power-play goals, Swayman saves 35 as Bruins win 5-1 to open series against Toronto

Jeremy Swayman made 35 saves to lead the Boston Bruins to a 5-1 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs in Game 1 of their first-round playoff series

BOSTON – Jeremy Swayman made 35 saves and got some help from the post to stop a point-blank shot by Auston Matthews Saturday night as the Boston Bruins defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-1 in Game 1 of their first-round playoff series.

Jake DeBrusk scored two power-play goals, and Bruins rookie Jonny Beecher scored on his first postseason shot on goal. Brandon Carlo added a goal about a minute after Matthews, who led the NHL with 69 goals this season, took Swayman away from the crease but knocked the puck off the near goal post.

Trent Frederic added an empty-netter to make it 5-1 with just over two minutes to go.

David Kampf scored for Toronto and Ilya Samsonov stopped 23 shots for the Maple Leafs. Toronto scratched No. 2 scorer William Nylander due to an undisclosed injury.

Game 2 is Monday night in Boston before the series shifts to Toronto for Games 3 and 4. If the Bruins follow their pattern of the season, it will be Linus Ullmark in net instead of Swayman.

The Maple Leafs are eager to end Canada’s half-century Stanley Cup drought and end Canada’s three-decade slump — or at least build on last year, when they won a play for the first time since 2004 off series won. But to do that, they’ll have to get past an Original Six enemy.

Toronto hasn’t beaten the Bruins in the playoffs in six tries since 1959. Boston also won the regular season series 4-0.

This was more of the same.

Toronto tried to set a physical tone even before the opening faceoff, when Max Domi tried to provoke Bruins captain Brad Marchand. It didn’t work: Boston opened a 2-0 lead and then took advantage of the Leafs penalties to pull away.

Beecher, who played 17 games in the AHL this season, converted a two-on-one with Jesper Boqvist to give Boston a lead 2:26 into the game.

It remained that way until about five minutes had passed in the second, when Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy fell, leaving no one between Matthews and Swayman. The goalie slid out in an attempt to poke the puck away, but Matthews got there first, turned and fired the puck off the near post.

About a minute later, DeBrusk dug the puck from behind Toronto’s net and fed it to Carlo in the slot in front of the goal. The Leafs were awarded consecutive penalties and the Bruins scored on both before Kampf made it 4-1 and spoiled the shutout early in the third.

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AP NHL Playoffs: https://apnews.com/hub/stanley-cup and https://apnews.com/hub/nhl