Cam Neely scored two goals, boosting his playoff-leading total to 14, and the Boston Bruins controlled the Pittsburgh Penguins' potent offense for a 6-3 victory in Wednesday night's opener of the Wales Conference finals.
His linemates also excelled - Craig Janney had a goal and two assists, and Vladimir Ruzicka had three assists - and Bob Sweeney emerged from Mario Lemieux's shadow for the other goal.Sweeney, assigned to stick close to Lemieux, gave the Bruins the lead for good. His fourth playoff goal at 3:23 of the second period made the score 3-2.
Boston, trying for its third berth in the Stanley Cup finals in four years, is home for Friday night's second game of the best-of-7 series. It continues in Pittsburgh on Sunday and Tuesday nights.
Goaltender Andy Moog played a big part in the Bruins' victory with Pittsburgh outshooting Boston 34-23. He made one of his biggest saves 14:19 into the second period when he stopped a point-blank shot by Mario Lemieux with the Penguins on a power play and the Bruins leading 3-2. Neely scored 1:16 later to give Boston a 4-2 lead.